Upcoming Event Calendar


Tuesday, November 14 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Forum on Ethics and Public Policy
robert-bullardRobert Bullard
“Environmental Justic for All: Why Equity Matters”
UCSB Campbell Hall – A FREE event

For more than three decades and in more than a dozen books, Professor Robert D. Bullard has documented that healthy places and healthy people are highly correlated. The poorest of the poor within the United States have the worst health and live in the most degraded environments. Bullard’s lecture explores how the environment justice framework redefined environmentalism and challenged institutional racism and the dominant environmental protection paradigm. Much of his life’s work has been devoted to uncovering the underlying assumptions that contribute to and produce unequal protection and brings to the surface the ethical and political questions of “who gets what, when, where, why, and how much.” Individuals who physically live on the “wrong side of the tracks” are subjected to elevated environmental health threats and more than their fair share of preventable diseases. Addressing equity is prerequisite to achieving healthy, sustainable, and livable communities for all.

Robert D. Bullard is a distinguished professor of urban planning and environmental policy in the Barbara Jordan-Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs at Texas Southern University in Houston. He is often described as the “father of environmental justice” and is the author of eighteen books that address sustainable development, environmental racism, urban land use, industrial facility siting, community reinvestment, housing, transportation, climate justice, emergency response, smart growth, and regional equity. In 2008, Newsweek named him one of “13 Environmental Leaders of the Century.” In 2013, he was honored with the Sierra Club John Muir Award, the first African American to win the award. In 2015, Iowa State University presented him its National Alumni Merit Award, and the same year, the American Bar Association presented him with the Excellence in Environmental, Energy, and Resources Stewardship Award. His latest books include Environmental Health and Racial Equality in the United States: Strategies for Building Just, Sustainable and Livable Communities (2011) and The Wrong Complexion for Protection: How the Government Response to Disaster Endangers African American Communities (2012).



Monday, May 1 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB
James Fallows
“It’s Happening Here: American Renewal, Ingenuity, and Innovation.”
Lobero Theatre – A FREE event –


Tuesday, January 31 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Kevin M. Esvelt
Assistant Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at MIT Media Lab
“Gene Drives, Technology, and Wisdom: Deciding Whether, When , and How”
UCSB Chemistry 1179 A FREE event


Event Description:

CRISPR-based gene drive systems are thought to be capable of altering entire wild populations and ecosystems, yet can be built by individuals. Do scientists have the right to perform such experiments behind closed doors? How should society deal with technologies that allow individuals to unilaterally affect many other people without their consent? Most importantly, is the scientific enterprise adequate to the challenge of increasingly powerful technologies? If not, gene drive could become a catalyst for reform.

Thursday, February 16 / 6:30 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Edina Lekovic
MPAC Public Affairs Consultant
“A Canary in the Coal Mine: Muslims in Trump’s America”
UCSB Corwin Pavillion A FREE event


Tuesday, February 28 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
E.J. Dionne
Senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, a syndicated columnist for the Washington Post, university professor in the Foundations of Democracy and Culture at Georgetown University
“Making America Empathetic Again: The Struggle of the Next Four Years”
Lobero Theatre – Santa Barbara A FREE event


Sunday, March 12 / 3:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Christina Bellantoni
Assistant managing editor for politics at the Los Angeles Times and writer of he Daily political newsletter Essential Politics
“Figuring Out What’s Real in an Era of Fake News: Why Journalism Matters Now More Than Ever”
The New Vic- Santa Barbara A FREE event


 Saturday, April 8 / 7:30 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Co-Presented with the University of California Santa Barbara Arts & Lectures
The 2017 Hamdani Harmony Lecture
Tawakkol Karman
“An Evening with the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate”
UCSB Campbell Hall A FREE event


In the most trying circumstances, both before and during the Arab spring, Tawakkol Karman has played a leading part in the struggle for women’s rights and for democracy and peace in Yemen.”  – The Norwegian Nobel Committee

2011 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Tawakkol Karman is the first Yemeni, the first Arab woman and the second Muslim woman to win a Nobel Prize. A human rights activist, journalist and politician, she was dubbed the “Mother of the Revolution” for her key role in the Arab Spring. She was imprisoned numerous times for her efforts, leading her to co-found Women Journalists Without Chains, an NGO that works toward freedom of expression and democratic rights for women around the world. An advocate for education, social equality and responsible investment as means to counteract poverty and oppression, Karman offers hopeful solutions to uphold the democratic spirit across the globe.

Graciously sponsored by Saida & Jamal Hamdani

Co-presented by the Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life, the Department of Religious Studies, UCSB Arts & Lectures, the Orfalea Center for Global & International Studies, the Department of Global Studies and the Center for Middle East Studies.


Tuesday, November 1 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Robert Jones
Director of the Public Religion Research Institute in Washington, D.C. and a well-known commentator on religion and politics and the upcoming presidential election
“Politics and Religion in a Changing America”
Victoria Theatre, 33 West Victoria Street – A FREE event


Thursday, November 10 / 8 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Anna Lappé
Internationally recognized export on food systems, James Beard Foundation Leadership Award, and a Time magazine Eco Who’s Who.
UCSB Lotte Lehmann Concert Hall – A FREE event


Thursday, November 17 / 4:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Co-Sponsored with the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center
Harry Boyte
Faculty member with the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota. Previously affiliated with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference
“Public Universities and the Future of Democracy”
McCune Conference Room, 6th Floor HSSB Building – A FREE event



Wednesday, October 5 / 7:30 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Co-Sponsored with Arts and Lectures
Larissa MacFarquhar
Staff writer at The New Yorker since 1998. Previously senior editor at Lingua Franca and an advisory editor at The Paris Review
“Strangers Drowning: Impossible Idealism, Drastic Choices, and the Urge to Help”
UCSB Campbell Hall – A FREE event

CappsEventsSectionFall2016_Larissa MacFarquhar

Wednesday, May 18 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
The Santa Barbara Independent
Martin E. Marty Lecture on Religion in American Life
An Evening with Bill Moyers
For almost half a century one of the most prolific
and influential figures in American journalism

The Granada Theatre, 1214 State Street, Santa Barbara – FOR TICKET INFORMATION – Click Here


For almost half a century Bill Moyers has been one of the most prolific and influential figures in American journalism.  For such groundbreaking PBS series as Joseph Campbell and the Power of Myth, A World of Ideas, Healing and the Mind, On Our Own Terms (death and dying in America); Faith and Reason, The Language of Life, Fooling with Words, Now with Bill Moyers, Bill Moyers Journal, Moyers & Company, his most recent series ending in January of 2015, and  scores of highly acclaimed investigative documentaries, Moyers has received 37 Emmy Awards, nine Peabody Awards, the National Academy of Television’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts from the American Film Institute, among others.

He began his public career as a founding organizer of the Peace Corps and then Special Assistant (and press secretary) to President Lyndon B. Johnson.  He became publisher of the influential New York newspaper Newsday, then chief correspondent of CBS Reports and Senior News Analyst for CBS before establishing his own independent production company, Public Affairs Television. Among his  best-selling books: Listening to America, Joseph Campbell and the Power of Myth, Genesis, Language of Life, Healing and the Mind, Moyers on America, and Moyers on Democracy. He is president of the Schumann Media Center, a non-profit organization dedicated to the support of independent journalism.

Friday, April 29 / 7:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
UC Santa Barbara Alumni Association
UC Education Abroad Program
Panel Discussion featuring
Marc Grossman ’73, Barbara Bodine ’70,
Giandomenico Picco M.A. ’71, and Joseph C. Wilson ’71
moderated by Professor Mark Juergensmeyer
Champions of Public Service 
A Gaucho Path to International Public Service
UCSB Corwin Pavilion– Event Registration Required – Click Here


Delve into the past, present and future of US foreign policy with the Gaucho diplomats who made their mark on the international arena.

UCSB Champions of Public Service presents a panel discussion moderated by Marc Grossman `73, featuring distinguished alumni Barbara Bodine`70, Giandomenico Picco`71 and Joseph C. Wilson `71. Find out how these UC Santa Barbara graduates built their careers in the diplomatic corps to become major policymakers during pivotal moments in our global history.


Panel Moderator

Marc Grossman `73 served in the United States Foreign Service for over 25 years. He served as US Ambassador to Turkey, Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs and Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs. He was also the United States Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan. In 1999, he played a lead role in orchestrating NATO’s Washington summit during the group’s 50th anniversary.

From 2000 to 2001, he served as the Director General of the United States Foreign Service and Director of Human Resources. In 2004, Grossman attained the Foreign Service’s highest rank when the President appointed him to Career Ambassador. In 2005, he received the Secretary of State’s Distinguished Service Award. Grossman now serves as the Vice Chairman of The Cohen Group.

Featured Panelists

Barbara Bodine `70 served in the Bureau of Near East Affairs’ Office of Arabian Peninsula Affairs as a Political-Military Officer, Deputy Office Director, and as the Country Officer for Yemen. She was the Deputy Chief of Mission in Kuwait during the Iraqi invasion and occupation in 1990. She received the Secretary of State’s Award for Valor for her work in occupied Kuwait, and went on to become the Dean of Professional Studies at the Department’s Foreign Service Institute.

In 1997, Bodine was Ambassador to Yemen when the destroyer Cole was bombed in a terrorist attack. In 1999, she negotiated for the release of three Americans kidnapped in Yemen. In 2001, a plane carrying Ambassador Bodine and 90 other passengers was hijacked mid-flight. The plane landed without incident in Africa.

Giandomenico Picco MA `71 served at United Nations for over two decades. As UN Under Secretary General, he worked to achieve peace in a troubled world through marshalling peacekeeping efforts, dispute arbitration, troop withdrawal from combat areas and negotiating ceasefires. Between 1989 to 1992, Picco negotiated the release of Western hostages and other missing or detained without due process from Lebanon.

In 1991, he received the US President’s Special Award for Exceptional Service. He now works in the private sector as a consultant and is a member of various institutions focused on international affairs.

Joseph C. Wilson `71 is best known for his 2002 investigative trip to Niger to investigate allegations Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein was attempting to purchase yellowcake uranium. For over two decades, Wilson has served in Africa on diplomatic missions in the Niger, Tago, South Africa, Burundi and the Republic of the Congo. In 1990, he was the last American diplomat to meet with Hussein to negotiate Iraq’s withdrawal from Kuwait. Wilson sheltered more than one hundred Americans at the embassy and helped evacuate several thousand from Iraq.

He went on to serve as US ambassador to Gabon and São Tomé and Príncipe. He also was appointed as Political Advisor to the Commander in Chief of the US Armed Forces in Stuttgart, Germany. Before he retired, Wilson helped direct African policy as Special Assistant to President Bill Clinton and as National Security Council Senior Director for African Affairs. He now manages JC Wilson International Ventures Corp. and serves as a guest speaker at programs and conferences dedicated to African business policies and politics.

This special event is a benefit for the Capps Center’s Sara Miller McCune Endowed Internship and Public Service Program.

Join us for a VIP meet and greet at Mosher Alumni House from 5:30pm to 6:30pm before the discussion, or join us just for the panel at 7:00pm at Corwin Pavillion.  Students may attend the panel discussion for FREE!


Thursday, March 3 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Capps Forum on Ethics and Public Policy
Marcy Darnovsky
Executive Director and co-founder of the Center for Genetics and Society
“Should We Genetically Modify Our Children?”
1104 Harold Frank Hall, UCSB – A FREE event


Thursday, January 21 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Hamdani World Harmony Lecture Series
John L. Esposito
Author of The Future of Islam, Islamophobia and the Challenge of Pluralism in the 21st Century, and Who Speaks for Islam? What a Billion Muslims Really Think

“Islam & Religious Pluralism”
UCSB Lotte Lehmann Concert Hall– A FREE event



Event Description:

Islam is a great religious tradition, the second largest and fastest growing of the World’s Religions, embracing some 57 Muslim countries and the second or third largest religion in Europe and America. Despite the global achievements of Islam as a faith and civilization, since the Iranian Revolution, Islam has been viewed through the lens violence and the actions of militant terrorists. This lecture will address the questions: Who are Muslims and what do they believe? What do Islam, Judaism and Christianity share in common? Why does it matter?

Speaker Profile:

Named “one of America’s foremost authorities and interpreters of Islam” by The Wall Street Journal, John L. Esposito is the author of more than 45 books including The Future of Islam, Islamophobia and the Challenge of Pluralism in the 21st Century, Who Speaks for Islam? What a Billion Muslims Really Think, Unholy War: Terror in the Name of Islam, The Islamic Threat: Myth or Reality? and What Everyone Needs to Know About Islam. He is University Professor as well as Professor of Religion and International Affairs and of Islamic Studies at Georgetown University, where he serves as Founding Director of the Alwaleed Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding in the Walsh School of Foreign Service.



Wednesday, October 21 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Capps Forum on Ethics and Public Policy
Morris Dees
Legendary civil rights attorney and co-founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center

“With Justice for All in a Changing America”
UCSB Campbell Hall – A FREE event


Thursday, November 12 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Capps Forum on Ethics and Public Policy
Mark Schapiro
Award winning investigative journalist and author of
Carbon Shock: A Tale of Risk and Calculus on the Front Lines
of a Disrupted Global Economy

“Carbon Shock: Seeking Equilibrium in the Climate-Disrupted Economy”
UCSB Lotte Lehmann Concert Hall – A FREE event

CappsWebEvents2015_Mark Schapiro_Image

Event Description:

Scientists describe the climate-havoc wrought on our natural world as the end of ‘stationarity’—a shift of the ecosystem so profound that it is no longer possible to extrapolate into the future from past patterns. Award-winning environmental journalist, Mark Schapiro, takes us on a journey to the tension points where these shifts are vividly underway. From the agricultural fields of California to the Amazon rainforest, from the oil-splattered beaches of Spain to the world’s ‘greenest’ cities, he reveals the accounting sleights of hand that have obscured the costs of fossil fuels—thus creating confusion over the costs of shifting toward renewable energy—and how the struggle to integrate those costs is reshaping the financial and political status quo. When climate negotiators convene in Paris next month, they will be facing this landscape in flux: Schapiro will also foreshadow some of the major areas of dispute and possibility informing the negotiations.  Courtesy of The Book Den, copies of Carbon Shock: A Tale of Risk and Calculus on the Front Lines of the Disrupted Global Economy will be available for purchase and signing at this event.

Speaker Profile:

An award-winning environmental journalist, Mark Schapiro is the author of Carbon Shock: A Tale Of Risk and Calculus on The Front Lines of the Disrupted Global Economy, Exposed: The Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Products and What’s at Stake for American Power, and the co-author of Circle Of Poison: Pesticides and People in a Hungry World. His work has appeared in Harpers, The Atlantic, Newsweek, Mother Jones, Yale 360, The Nation, Los Angeles Times, and elsewhere. He teaches at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, and at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey.

Schapiro is the recipient of a number of journalism awards, including the Society of Environmental Journalists Reporting Award, and the Kurt Schork Award for International Reporting.


Presented by the Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB and cosponsored by the Community Environmental Council.

Sunday, June 7 / 3:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Martin E. Marty Lecture on Religion in American Life

Eddie S. Glaude, Jr.
William S. Tod Professor of Religion and African American Studies and
Chair of the Center for African American Studies at Princeton University

“Is The Black Church Dead?”
University Club, 1332 Santa Barbara Street, Santa Barbara – A FREE event


Monday, April 20, 2015 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

The Hunting Ground

A documentary on the issue of sexual assault on college campuses from the makers of the Academy-Award nominated The Invisible War
UCSB Campbell Hall – A FREE event


Event Description:

In 2014, the White House released guidelines on how campuses should deal with issues of sexual assault and, in a move that continues to make waves, also disclosed the names of 55 schools – from Harvard to UC Berkeley –that were under investigation for their handling of rape accusations. Since it is estimated that 1 in 5 college women will be sexually assaulted during college the way in which universities handle these cases has become a source of intense scrutiny and controversy – are schools protecting all of their students, or just some?

From the makers of the Academy Award-nominated The Invisible War comes a startling exposé of sexual assault on U.S. college campuses, their institutional cover-ups, and the devastating toll they take on students and their families. Weaving together verité footage, expert insights, and first-person testimonies, The Hunting Ground (Kirby Dick, 2015, 103 min.) follows the lives of several undergraduate assault survivors as they attempt to pursue – despite incredible pushback, harassment, and traumatic aftermath – both their education and justice.

The Hunting Ground Reviews:

“This movie needs to be seen and discussed by everyone within shouting distance of the college experience: parents, students (of both genders), administrators, alumni, coaches – the list goes on.” — Boston Globe

“An unblinking look at sexual assaults on campus.” — The New York Times

“Some documentaries shed light on history, while others illuminate the quirky nooks of our existence. Few are as urgent as The Hunting Ground; few need to be seen by the masses.” 
— Newsweek

Wednesday, March 11, 2015 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Shane Harris
Author of @War: The Rise of the Military-Internet Complex,
and The Watchers: The Rise of America’s Surveillance State

“The Ethics of CyberWar”
New Vic Theater – 33 West Victoria Street, Santa Barbara – A FREE event


Event Description:

The United States military currently views cyberspace as the “fifth domain” of warfare (alongside land, air, sea, and space), and the Department of Defense, the National Security Agency, and the CIA all field teams of hackers who can, and do, launch computer virus strikes against enemy targets. Shane Harris delves into the frontlines of America’s new cyber war, investigating the recent revelations that have shown how government agencies are joining with tech giants like Google and Facebook to collect vast amounts of information. The military has also formed a new alliance with tech and finance companies to patrol cyberspace, and Harris offers a deeper glimpse into this partnership than we have ever seen before. Finally, Harris explains what the new cybersecurity regime means for all of us, who spend.

Speaker Profile:

Shane Harris is an award-winning author and magazine journalist. He is currently a Senior Correspondent at The Daily Beast, where he covers national security, intelligence and cyber security. He is also an ASU fellow at New America, where he researches the future of war. His work has appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Slate, Foreign Policy, the Atlantic, National Journal, the Washington Post, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, and the U.S. Naval Institute’s Proceedings. He has provided analysis and commentary for CNN, NPR, the BBC, the History Channel, National Geographic, several foreign media organizations and many local public radio stations.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015 / 5:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Capps Forum on Ethics and Public Policy and Department of History at UCSB
Eric Foner
DeWitt Clinton Professor of History at Columbia University and author of The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery

“Gateway to Freedom: The Hidden History of the Underground Railroad”
UCSB Campbell Hall – A FREE event


Monday, February 9, 2015 / 5:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Capps Forum on Ethics and Public Policy
Anna Lappé
Author of Diet for a Hot Planet and Grub

“Ethics at the End of a Fork”
UCSB Corwin Pavilion – A FREE event


Event Description:

The poet-farmer Wendell Berry has said, “Eating is an agricultural act.” Eating is also an ethical act. The choices that we make as individuals — and as a society — about food have ripples that affect every aspect of our lives, from the environment to the climate, from social justice to public health. In this talk, national bestselling author and advocate, Anna Lappé, will discuss how the food system impacts so many different aspects of our lives and how recent and diverse social movements motivated by a profound ethic of food are transforming how we feed ourselves. Ultimately, these movements show the transformative power of talking about the ethics of food.

Speaker Profile:

Anna Lappé is a widely respected writer and educator, known for her work as an expert on food systems and as a sustainable food advocate. Her latest book, Diet for a Hot Planet: The Climate Crisis at the End of Your Fork and What You Can Do About It was named by Booklist and Kirkus as one of the best environmental books of the year. She is also the author of Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen, showcasing the ecological and social benefits of sustainable food, and co-author of Hope’s Edge, which chronicles social movements fighting hunger around the world. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, Gourmet, Oprah Magazine, among many other publications. Named one of Time magazine’s “eco” Who’s-Who, Lappé is a founding principal of the Small Planet Institute and the Small Planet Fund.



Tuesday, November 18, 2014 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Peter Barnes
Entrepreneur, journalist, and author of Capitalism 3.0 and With Liberty and Dividends For All

“Fixing Capitalism’s Deepest Flaws
UCSB Corwin Pavilion – A FREE event


Speaker Profile:

Peter Barnes, entrepreneur and former Newsweek correspondent, will discuss his new book With Liberty and Dividends For All: How to Save Our Middle Class When Jobs Don’t Pay Enough.  Barnes argues that because of globalization, automation, and winner-take-all capitalism, there won’t be enough high-paying jobs to sustain America’s middle class in the future. Therefore, to survive economically, our middle class needs-and deserves-a supplementary source of nonlabor income. Barnes proposes that we give every American a share of the wealth we own together-starting with our air and financial infrastructure. Courtesy of The Book Den copies of With Liberty and Dividends For All will be available for purchase and signing at this event.

Thursday, October 16, 2014 / 5:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Walter Isaacson
President and CEO, Aspen Institute

“The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses,
and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution”

UCSB Campbell Hall – A FREE event


Speaker Profile:

Walter Isaacson, President and CEO of the Aspen Institute, will discuss and sign copies of his forthcoming book, The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution, at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 16 in Campbell Hall.  Isaacson is the award-winning author of Steve Jobs (2011), Einstein: His Life and Universe (2007), Benjamin Franklin: An American Life (2003), and Kissinger: A Biography (1992).  He began his career at The Sunday Times of London and then the New Orleans Times Picayune/States-Item.  He joined TIME in 1978 and served as a political correspondent, national editor, and editor of new media before becoming the magazine’s 14th editor in 1996. He became chairman and CEO of CNN in 2001, and then president and CEO of the Aspen Institute in 2003.

Saturday, May 10, 2014 / 3:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Former Associate Justice
Sandra Day O’Connor

“Educating for Democracy in a Digital Age”
UCSB Campbell Hall – A FREE event


Speaker Profile:

Sandra Day O’Connor (Retired), Associate Justice, was born in El Paso, Texas, March 26, 1930. She married John Jay O’Connor III in 1952 and has three sons – Scott, Brian, and Jay. She received her B.A. and LL.B. from Stanford University. She served as Deputy County Attorney of San Mateo County, California from 1952–1953 and as a civilian attorney for Quartermaster Market Center, Frankfurt, Germany from 1954–1957. From 1958–1960, she practiced law in Maryvale, Arizona, and served as Assistant Attorney General of Arizona from 1965–1969. She was appointed to the Arizona State Senate in1969 and was subsequently reelected to two two-year terms. In 1975 she was elected Judge of the Maricopa County Superior Court and served until 1979, when she was appointed to the Arizona Court of Appeals. President Reagan nominated her as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and she took her seat September 25, 1981. Justice O’Connor retired from the Supreme Court on January 31, 2006.

Justice O’Connor’s publications include her biography, Lazy B: Growing Up on a Cattle Ranch in the American Southwest, (2002) discussing her early life, family, and growing up on a ranch in Arizona. O’Connor also wrote the national bestseller, The Majesty of the Law: Reflections of a Supreme Court Justice, about the law, the institution of the Supreme Court, and life as a Supreme Court Justice (2003). Her latest book, Out of Order: Stories from the History of the Supreme Court (2013), tells the story of how the high court has changed since its formation and how it works in relation to the legislature and the presidency.  She has also written two children’s books: Chico (2005) and Finding Susie (2009).

Monday, May 19, 2014 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at
Capps Forum on Ethics and Public Policy

Paul R. Abramson
“Sex, Sex, and More Sex:
Ensuring Sexual Rights While Preventing
Sexual Harm
1104 Harold Frank Hall, UCSB – A FREE event


Event Description:

If we want a better world, we need to eliminate sexual harm. Sexual harm includes not just violent rape, but also sexual coercion, sexual harassment, and sexual abuse of children. However, we need to address these issues in a way that preserves the sexual liberties of adults, adolescents and yes, kids, too. Dr. Abramson will offer his ideas on how to meet both of these goals.

Speaker Profile:

Paul R. Abramson is Chair of Psychology at UCLA. He studies human sexuality and its intersection with constitutional law. He has extensive experience serving as an expert witness in sexual abuse cases. Abramson is that author or coauthor of seven books, including Sex Appeal: Six Ethical Principles for the 21st Century; Romance in the Ivory Tower: The Rights and Liberty of Conscience; With Pleasure: Thoughts on the Nature of Human Sexuality; A House Divided: Suspicions of Mother-Daughter Incest, Sexual Rights in America: The Ninth Amendment and the Pursuit of Happiness, and Sarah: A Sexual Biography.

Sunday, January 26, 2014 / 3:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB
Martin E. Marty Lecture on Religion and Public Life at UCSB

Stephen Prothero
“God is Not One: Religious Tolerance in an Age of Extremism”
New Vic Theatre, 33 W. Victoria Street, Santa Barbara – A FREE event


Event Description:

Are all religions simply different ways up the same mountain? Or is the key to religious tolerance found in better understanding differences?  In God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Run the World, New York Times bestselling author of Religious Literacy and religion scholar Stephen Prothero argues that persistent attempts to portray all religions as different paths to the same God overlook the distinct problem that each tradition seeks to solve. Delving into the different problems and solutions that Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Judaism, Confucianism, Yoruba Religion, Daoism and Atheism strive to combat, God is Not One is an indispensable guide to the questions human beings have asked for millennia—and to the disparate paths we are taking to answer them today.

Speaker Profile:
“Both tolerance and respect are empty virtues until we actually understand whatever it is we are supposed to be tolerating or respecting,” Prothero says.

Prothero, a professor of religion at Boston University, has been described by Newsweek as “a world religions scholar with the soul of a late night comic.”  His books have inspired a Time magazine cover story.  He has also spoken on the need for religious literacy at the White House. Prothero’s best-selling books include American Jesus: How the Son of God Became a National Icon, named one of the top religion books for 2003 by Publishers Weekly; the New York Times best-seller, Religious Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know – and Doesn’t; and God Is Not One, which was named one of the top religion books of 2010 by the Huffington Post. He also won the Best First Book award of the American Academy of Religion in 1997 for his study, The White Buddhist: The Asian Odyssey of Henry Steel Olcott.  Prothero is passionate about the need to understand the influence of religion on culture and politics. In addition to his scholarly work, he writes for a wide variety of popular magazines and newspapers, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Newsweek, Slate, Salon, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe and CNN’s Belief Blog.  He comments on religion for NPR and on television programs, including “The Colbert Report,” “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” “The O’Reilly Factor” and “The Today Show,” and he was a major contributor to PBS’s video series, God in America.  Prothero’s was named a “Literary Light of 2012” by the Boston Public Library and a finalist for Best Religion Commentary by the Religion Newswriters Association in 2011 and 2012. In 2012 he was elected to the American Society for the Study of Religion and was named the  Goldman Sachs Senior Fellow at the Smithsonian Institute’s National Museum of American History.

Prothero received his BA from Yale College in American Studies and his MA and PhD from Harvard University in the Study of Religion.

Monday, February 10, 2014 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Heidi Boghosian
“Spying on Democracy: Government Surveillance, Corporate Power and Public Resistance”
New Vic Theatre, 33 W. Victoria Street, Santa Barbara – A FREE event


Event Description:

Until the watershed leak of top-secret documents by Edward Snowden to the Guardian UK and the Washington Post, most Americans did not realize the extent to which our government is actively acquiring personal information from telecommunications companies and other corporations. As made startlingly clear, the National Security Agency (NSA) has collected information on every phone call Americans have made over the past seven years. In that same time, the NSA and the FBI have gained the ability to access emails, photos, audio and video chats, and additional content from Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Microsoft, YouTube, Skype, Apple, and others, allegedly in order to track foreign targets.

In Spying on Democracy, National Lawyers Guild Executive Director Heidi Boghosian documents the disturbing increase in surveillance of ordinary citizens and the danger it poses to our privacy, our civil liberties, and to the future of democracy itself. Boghosian reveals how technology is being used to categorize and monitor people based on their associations, their movements, their purchases, and their perceived political beliefs. She shows how corporations and government intelligence agencies mine data from sources as diverse as surveillance cameras and unmanned drones to iris scans and medical records, while combing websites, email, phone records and social media for resale to third parties, including U.S. intelligence agencies.  Spying on Democracy is a timely, invaluable, and accessible primer for anyone concerned with protecting privacy, freedom, and the U.S. Constitution.

Speaker Profile:
Heidi Boghosian is currently the Executive Director at the National Lawyers Guild, co-host of the civil liberties radio show “Law and Disorder,” on Pacifica’s WBAI in New York and over 40 national affiliates.  She is the author of Spying on Democracy: Government Surveillance, Corporate Power and Public Resistance (2013), Punishing Protest: Government Tactics that Suppress Free Speech (2007), and The Assault on Free Speech, Public Assembly, and Dissent: A National Lawyers Guild Report on Government Violations of First Amendment Rights in the United States (2004).

She received her JD from Temple Law School where she was the editor-in-chief of the Temple Political & Civil Rights Law Review.  She also holds an MS from Boston University and a BA from Brown University.

Spying on Democracy Book Reviews:

“Everyone of us is under the omniscient magnifying glass of the government and corporate spies. . . . How do we respond to this smog of surveillance? Start by reading Spying on Democracy: Government Surveillance, Corporate Power, and Public Resistance by Heidi Boghosian”– Bill Moyers

“Heidi Boghosian’s Spying on Democracy is the answer to the question, ‘if you’re not doing anything wrong, why should you care if someone’s watching you?” — Michael German, Senior Policy Counsel, ACLU and former FBI agent

“With ex-CIA staffer Edward Snowden’s leaks about National Security Agency surveillance in the headlines, Heidi Boghosian’s Spying on Democracy: Government Surveillance, Corporate Power, and Public Resistance feels especially timely. Boghosian reveals how the government acquires information from telecommunications companies and other organizations to create databases about ‘persons of interest.’” — Publishers Weekly

Thursday, March 6, 2014 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB
Capps Forum on Ethics and Public Policy

Stuart J. Youngner, M.D.
“Decisions at the End of Life: The Illusion of Control and the Sense of Responsibility”
McCune Conference Room, 6020 Humanities and Social Sciences Building, UCSB – A FREE event
Cosponsored by UCSB Interdisciplinary Humanities Center The Value of Care series


Event Description:

More than 2 million people die every year in the United States, almost always in the presence of life-sustaining medical technology.  An overwhelming consensus exists that sometimes the choices posed by medical technology make death the least worst alternative. Yet, choosing death or letting go is often a painful and contentious business.  Dr. Youngner will explore some of the ways our society and others are coping with this unavoidable dilemma.

Speaker Profile:
Stuart J. Youngner received a B.A. from Swarthmore College and an M.D. from Case Western Reserve University where he is Susan E. Watson Professor and Chairman of the Department of Bioethics. He did an internship in Pediatrics and a residency in Psychiatry at University Hospitals of Cleveland and subsequently received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities to study medical ethics at the Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University.

Dr. Youngner serves on the editorial advisory boards of the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, the Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal, and the Journal of Law, Medicine, and Ethics. He has been elected a Fellow of the Hastings Center and the American Psychiatric Association and has been certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He has served as a consultant to the United States Congress Office of Technology Assessment, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Institute of Medicine, and the Pontifical Academy of Sciences. Dr. Youngner has testified before the United States Congress. He served as President of the Society for Bioethics Consultation from 1994-1997 and is a founding member of the Board of Directors of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities and was given the organization’s Distinguished Service Award in 2000. He co-directed a national task force that examined the need for standards for ethics committees and clinical ethics consultation. He is the on the Medical Board of Trustees and ethics committee of the Musculoskeletal Foundation. He has served as as Board Member of the Association of Bioethics Program Directors since 2011.

Dr. Youngner is a nationally and internationally recognized scholar in biomedical ethics and has published and spoken on topics including: decisions to limit life-sustaining treatment, ethics committees, physician-assisted suicide, advance directives, definitions of death, and ethical issues in organ and tissue retrieval and transplantation. He has published over 90 articles in peer-reviewed scholarly journals. He is the editor or coeditor of nine books, including The Definition of Death: Contemporary Controversies (Johns Hopkins University Press). His latest book, Physician-Assisted Death in Perspective: Assessing the Dutch Experience, was published by Cambridge University Press in July, 2012.


Sunday, November 3, 2013 / 3:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB
Wade Clark Roof Lecture on Human Rights

Martina Vandenberg
“Human Trafficking: Ending the Myths, Confronting the Realities”
UCSB Corwin Pavilion – A FREE event


Thursday, November 21, 2013 / 8:00 p.m.
UCSB Critical Issues in America Series
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Peter Edelman
“So Rich, So Poor: Why It’s So Hard To End Poverty in America”
McCune Conference Room 6020 Humanities and Social Sciences Building, UCSB – A FREE event


Wednesday, April 17, 2013 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Eboo Patel
“Sacred Ground: Pluralism, Prejudice, and the Promise of America”
UCSB Corwin Pavilion – A FREE event



More than a decade after the attacks of 9/11, suspicion and animosity toward American Muslims have still not subsided. In Sacred Ground, author and renowned interfaith leader Eboo Patel argues that such prejudice represents not just a problem for Muslims, but a challenge to the very idea of America. Patel illustrates how the forces of pluralism in America have time and again defeated the forces of prejudice. He then asks us to share in his vision of a better America—a robustly pluralistic country in which our commonalities are more important than our differences, and in which difference enriches, rather than threatens, our religious traditions.

Speaker Profile:

Named by US News & World Report as one of America’s Best Leaders of 2009, Eboo Patel is the Founder and President of Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC), a Chicago-based organization building the interfaith movement on college campuses. Author of the book Acts of Faith: The Story of an American Muslim, the Struggle for the Soul of a Generation, which won the Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Religion, and his latest book Sacred Ground: Pluralism, Prejudice, and the Promise of America, Eboo is also a regular contributor to the Washington Post, USA Today, Huffington Post, NPR, and CNN.  He served on President Obama’s inaugural Advisory Council of the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships and holds a doctorate in the sociology of religion from Oxford University, where he studied on a Rhodes scholarship.

Eboo serves on the Religious Advisory Committee of the Council on Foreign Relations, on the Board of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, on the National Committee of the Aga Khan Foundation USA, and on the Department of Homeland Security’s Faith-based Advisory Council. He has spoken at the TED Conference, the Clinton Global Initiative, the Nobel Peace Prize Forum and universities around the world. Eboo is a Young Global Leader in the World Economic Forum and an Ashoka Fellow, part of a select group of social entrepreneurs whose ideas are changing the world. He was named by Islamica Magazine as one of ten young Muslim visionaries shaping Islam in America and was chosen by Harvard’s Kennedy School Review as one of five future policy leaders to watch. Both Eboo and IFYC were honored with the Roosevelt Institute’s Freedom of Worship Medal in 2009 and Eboo was recently awarded the Guru Nanak Interfaith Prize, an award given to an individual to enhance awareness of the crucial role of religious dialogue in the pursuit of peace.

Reviews of Sacred Ground: Pluralism, Prejudice, and the Promise of America

“Eboo Patel is a remarkable young man with the wisdom to seek truth and the courage to speak it. One of America’s foremost advocates and practitioners of interfaith understanding, he has written a book that combines timely social commentary with compelling history and a wealth of personal anecdotes. Sacred Ground is a refreshing, thought-provoking, myth-smashing, and deeply patriotic exploration of American identity and ideals.” — Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright

Sacred Ground is simultaneously a chronicle of religious tensions in post-9/11 America and an account of how to create, through trial and error and critical self-reflection, the most successful interfaith movement in the country.  Patel probes like a professor, inspires like a preacher, and writes like a poet.  I really loved this book; it is a tale that is truly hard to put down.” — Robert D. Putnam, author of American Grace

“Interfaith cooperation is one of America’s founding ideals. It still sets us apart from much of the world. Eboo Patel has lived that value and, in this book, spreads that good word. Uplifting and invaluable, Sacred Ground is essential reading for our polarized era.” — Walter Isaacson, author of Steve Jobs and Benjamin Franklin


Past Events – Winter 2013

Wednesday, February 20, 2013 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Stefan Timmermans
“Saving Babies? The Consequences of Newborn Genetic Screening”
1104 Harold Frank Hall – A FREE event

Timmermans Headshot     Timmermans Book Cover


It has been close to six decades since Watson and Crick discovered the structure of DNA and more than ten years since the human genome was decoded. Today, through the collection and analysis of a small blood sample, every baby born in the United States is screened for more than fifty genetic disorders. Though the early detection of these abnormalities can potentially save lives, the test also has a high percentage of false positives—inaccurate results that can take a brutal emotional toll on parents before they are corrected. Now some doctors are questioning whether the benefits of these screenings outweigh the stress and pain they sometimes produce. In Saving Babies?, Stefan Timmermans and Mara Buchbinder evaluate the consequences and benefits of state-mandated newborn screening—and the larger policy questions they raise about the inherent inequalities in American medical care that limit the effectiveness of this potentially lifesaving technology.

Speaker Profile:

Stefan Timmermans is chair and professor of the sociology department at UCLA.  His research draws from medical sociology and science studies and uses ethnographic and historical methods to address key issues in the for-profit U.S. health care system. He has conducted research on medical technologies, health professions, death and dying, and population health. He is currently working on an ethnographic study of the expansion of newborn screening.

His next projects will be about the community spillover effects of lack of health insurance and whole exome sequencing. His goal is to conduct robust qualitative research that reveals the invisible benefits and costs of the U.S. health care system. He is the author of Sudden Death and the Myth of CPR (Temple 1999), The Gold Standard: The Challenge of Evidence-Based Medicine and Standardization in Health Care (Temple, 2003, with Marc Berg), and Postmortem: How Medical Examiners Explain Suspicious Deaths (Chicago, 2006). His book Saving Babies? The Consequences of Newborn Genetic Screening (with Mara Buchbinder) is forthcoming from University of Chicago Press. He is also senior editor medical sociology for the journal Social Science and Medicine.

Monday, February 4, 2013 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Timothy Noah
“Inequality and the 2012 Election”
Lobero Theater, 33 East Canon Perdido St., Santa Barbara – A FREE event –

TimothyNoahpic    Great Divergence pb


The 2012 presidential election was the first, since the income-inequality trend began three decades ago, to address this troubling divergence. But the discussion’s main function was to demonize Mitt Romney rather than to produce concrete solutions to the problem.  Courtesy of The Book Den, copies of The Great Divergence: America’s Growing Inequality Crisis And What We Can Do About It were available for purchase and signing at this event..

Speaker Profile:

Timothy Noah is a senior editor at The New Republic, where he writes the TRB column. He was for a dozen years a senior writer at Slate, where he wrote the “Chatterbox” column, among other duties. Prior to that he was a Washington-based reporter for the Wall Street Journal, an assistant managing editor for U.S. News & World Report, a congressional correspondent for Newsweek, and an editor of the Washington Monthly (where he remains a contributing editor). Noah has written for a variety of other national publications, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, Harper’s, and Fortune. He received the 2011 Hillman Prize for a 10-part Slate series on income inequality in the U.S. that he subsequently expanded into his 2012 book, The Great Divergence: America’s Growing Inequality Crisis And What We Can Do About It.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013 / 7:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Theater of War
Marjorie Luke TheatreA FREE event –


Thursday, January 31, 2013 / 4:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Theater of War
Hatlen TheaterA FREE event –


“Theater of War” is an innovative public health project that presents readings of ancient Greek plays, Sophocles’ Ajax and Philoctetes, as a catalyst for town hall discussions about the challenges faced by service members, veterans, their families, caregivers and communities. This event is intended to increase awareness of post-deployment psychological health issues, disseminate information regarding available resources, and foster greater family and troop resilience. Using Sophocles’ plays to forge a common vocabulary for openly discussing the impact of war on individuals, families and communities, these events will be aimed at generating compassion and understanding between diverse audiences. Each performance includes a town hall-style audience discussion, which is facilitated with the help of military community members.


Tuesday, January 9, 2013 / 4:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Terror’s Aftermath: New Developments in America and the Middle East
McCune Conference Room, 6020 Humanities & Social Sciences Building, UCSBA FREE event –


This panel discussion featuring Juan Campo (Department of Religious Studies, UCSB), Richard Hecht (Department of Religious Studies, UCSB), Kathleen Moore (Department of Religious Studies, UCSB), and Salim Yaqub (Department of History, UCSB) will be moderated byWade Clark Roof (Director, Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion and Public Life and Department of Religious Studies, UCSB)

Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB
UCSB Interdisciplinary Humanities Center series Fallout: In the Aftermath of War

Past Events – Fall 2012

Sunday, November 18, 2012 / 3:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Vivek Wadhwa and Ahmed Zewail,
“Technology’s Promise, Humanity’s Future” “
UCSB Campbell Hall – A FREE event –


 As late as the mid-twentieth century science and technology were celebrated as instruments of progress, but by the early twenty-first century they were viewed as threats to life on earth.  How may science and technology be managed to advance humanity?

Vivek Wadhwa is Vice President of Academics and Innovation at Singularity University, Fellow at the Arthur & Toni Rembe Rock Center for Corporate Governance, Stanford University, Director of Research at the Center for Entrepreneurship and Research Commercialization at the Pratt School of Engineering,  Duke University, and distinguished visiting scholar, Halle Institute of Global Learning, Emory University.  In 2012, the U.S. Government awarded Wadhwa distinguished recognition as an “Outstanding American by Choice” — for his “commitment to this country and to the common civic values that unite us as Americans.”

Wadhwa oversees the academic programs at Singularity University, which educates a select group of leaders about the exponentially growing technologies that are soon going to change our world.  These advances—in fields such as robotics, A.I., computing, synthetic biology, 3D printing, medicine, and nanomaterials—are making it possible for small teams to do what was once possible only for governments and large corporations to do: solve the grand challenges in education, water, food, shelter, health, and security.

In his roles at Stanford, Duke, and Emory universities, Wadhwa lectures in class on subjects such as entrepreneurship and public policy, helps prepare students for the real world, and leads groundbreaking research projects.  He is an advisor to several governments; mentors entrepreneurs; and is a regular columnist for The Washington Post, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, and the American Society of Engineering Education’s Prism magazine.  Prior to joining academia in 2005, Wadhwa founded two software companies. 

Ahmed Zewail, winner of the 1999 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, serves as Linus Pauling Professor of Chemical Physics and Professor of Physics at the California Institute of Technology, (Caltech), where he is currently the Director of the Moore Foundation’s Center for Physical Biology.  In 2009, President Barack Obama appointed him to the President’s Council of Advisors of the White House and named him as the first United States Science Envoy to the Middle East.  In 2011, he was recognized as one of the Top American Leaders of the year by The Washington Post and Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership.

Dr. Zewail was the sole recipient of the 1999 Nobel Prize for his pioneering developments in femtoscience, making possible observations of atomic motions during molecular transformations in femtosecond, a millionth of a billionth of a second. More recently, he and his group have developed the field of 4D electron microscopy for the direct visualization of matter’s behavior, from atoms to biological cells, in the four dimensions of space and time. A significant effort is also devoted to giving public lectures on science and on the promotion of education and partnership for world peace, and he continues to serve on national and international boards for academic, cultural, and world affairs.

For his contributions to science and public life he has garnered other honors from around the globe: forty honorary degrees in the sciences, arts, philosophy, law, medicine, and humane letters from universities around the world; orders of state and merit; commemorative postage stamps; and more than one hundred international awards, including the Albert Einstein World Award of Science, Benjamin Franklin Medal, the Robert A. Welch Award, the Leonardo da Vinci Award, the King Faisal International Prize, and the Priestley Medal.

In his name, international prizes have been established, and the AZ foundation provides support for the dissemination of knowledge and for merit awards in arts and sciences.

This free, public event is part of the Hamdani World Harmony Lecture Series and is presented by the Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB.



Wednesday, October 10, 2012 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Mickey Edwards,
“It’s Time to Turn Republicans and Democrats Into Americans”
Lobero Theatre, 33 East Canon Perdido Street, Santa Barbara – A FREE event –


American government has become dysfunctional but that’s not just because we elect the wrong people; it’s because we’ve created a political system that rewards intransigence and incivility and punishes cooperation and compromise. We’ve allowed political parties to manipulate our elections and even our governing systems for their own partisan advantage. To fix the problem and get government working again, we have to change the political system itself. Courtesy of The Book Den, copes of The Parties Versus the People will be available for purchase and signing at this event.

Former Congressman Mickey Edwards is a lecturer at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. He is also a vice president of the Aspen Institute and director of the Institute’s Aspen-Rodel Fellowships in Public Leadership program.

Edwards served as a member of Congress for 16 years, during which time he was a senior member of the House Republican leadership as chairman of the Republican Policy Committee, a member of both the House Appropriations and Budget committees, and ranking member of the House Subcommittee on Foreign Operations. After leaving Congress, he taught government and public policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government for 11 years before moving to Princeton in 2004. He has taught at Harvard Law School and as a visiting professor at Georgetown University’s Public Policy Institute.

Edwards has been a regular columnist for a number of newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Examiner, and the Boston Globe, and for years broadcasted weekly political commentary on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered.” His articles have also appeared frequently in The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, the San Francisco Examiner, the Miami Herald, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Boston Herald, the Tulsa World and other major newspapers, and in such publications as The National Interest, The Public Interest, and Policy Review. He is the author of two books, the co-author of a third, and he has contributed chapters to several more. His latest book is “The Parties Versus the People: How to Turn Republicans and Democrats into Americans” (August, 2012).

Edwards has chaired task forces on foreign policy for The Brookings Institution and the Council on Foreign Relations and is a director of several organizations in the fields of public policy and foreign affairs, including The Constitution Project. He has also been an adviser to the State Department. Edwards has degrees in both journalism and law.

This event is presented by the Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB.


Monday, October 1, 2012 / 8:00 p.m.
Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB

Jonathan Alter,

“Why the 2012 Election Is the Most Pivotal of Our Lifetime”

Lobero Theatre, 33 East Canon Perdido Street, Santa Barbara – A FREE event

The question this year is whether the country will stay on a centrist course or make a sharp turn to the right. If President Obama is reelected, the federal government will continue to take responsibility for lending a helping hand to people in need.  If Mitt Romney wins, the safety net will be shredded. Because few votes may be won by discussing the poor, the American social contract is rarely discussed.  But it is on the line.

Jonathan Alter is the author of two New York Times best-sellers, The Promise: President Obama, Year One and The Defining Moment: FDR’s Hundred Days and the Triumph of Hope and a weekly columnist for Bloomberg View.

Before Bloomberg View, Alter spent 28 years as a correspondent, editor and columnist for Newsweek where he covered seven presidential elections and authored more than 50 cover stories.

Presented by the Walter H. Capps Center for the Study of Ethics, Religion, and Public Life at UCSB.


Shirin Ebadi, J.D. received the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize for promoting human rights, in particular, the rights of women, children, and political prisoners in Iran. She was the first Muslim woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize and only the fifth Muslim to receive a Nobel Prize in any field. Dr. Ebadi was also one of the first female judges in Iran. She served as president of the city court of Tehran from 1975 to 1979, but was dismissed from her position after the Islamic Revolution in February 1979.After obtaining her lawyer’s license in 1992, Dr. Ebadi entered private practice. She has taken on many controversial cases defending political dissidents and, as a result, has been arrested numerous times.