Tag Archives: Lecture

Ukraine’s “Revolution with Dignity” and U.S. Foreign Policy

Eugene/Springfield–Bend resident Bruce Donahue, who recently retired as Minister-Counselor from the U.S. Department of State, speaks about his last assignment as Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy in Kiev, Ukraine, from 2013–2015. In his presentation, Donahue reviews the often-misunderstood events of the winter of 2013–2014, which led then-Ukrainian President Yanukovych to flee the country and allowed a pro-Western government to come to power. He also discusses Russia’s actions during the “Revolution of Dignity,” including the invasion of Crimea and eastern Ukraine. Finally, he outlines implications for U.S. foreign policy and lessons learned from the Ukrainian revolution. Donahue retired from the Foreign Service in 2016 after a 33-year career as a Foreign Service Officer. During most of his career, he focused on Russia and Eastern and Central Europe, serving in Poland and Moscow. Other overseas assignments included South Korea and Armenia. Donahue received his BA from Cornell University and his MA and PhD from the University of Oregon. He has been married to his wife, Karen, for 34 years; they have four adult children.

Gift Children: A Story of Race, Family, and Adoption in a Divided America

Eugene/Springfield–Nearly 50 years ago, a young Eugene couple, Doug and Gloria Bates, both white and the parents of two very blond little boys, adopted a pair of young African-American girls. It thrust the family to the forefront of a controversial social experiment that’s still being debated today. So how did it all work out for the Bateses? Join Doug Bates, a University of Oregon graduate and Pulitzer Prizewinning journalist, for a discussion of his book, Gift Children, in which he tells the compelling and sometimes gritty story of his family’s interracial odyssey. The book draws its title from a custom of the Old South, where the adoption of “gift children” by close friends was common among poor blacks. Though published 25 years ago, Gift Children remains a remarkably relevant portrait of family and race today, exploring the theme of whites and blacks trying to live together in a country gripped by racial dissension. Bates retired in 2009 as an associate editor at The Oregonian and a member of its editorial board. He has worked as assistant managing editor of The San Diego Union-Tribune, news editor of The Seattle Times and managing editor of The Register-Guard in Eugene. He has also held editing and writing positions at daily newspapers in Spokane and Bend. In 2006, Bates was co-recipient of the Pulitzer Prize, along with his colleague at The Oregonian, Rick Attig, who is also a UO journalism alumnus. Their 15-part series on abusive conditions at the Oregon State Hospital won the prize for editorial writing along with several other national honors. Born in McMinnville, Oregon, Bates grew up in Oakridge and graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in journalism in 1968. He and his wife Gloria moved back to Oakridge in retirement. Besides Gift Children, Bates is also the author of The Pulitzer Prize: The Inside Story of America’s Most Prestigious Award, a book he wrote 15 years before receiving the honor himself.

The Mexican Revolution of 1910–1920

Central OregonAs part of the 2016–17 Speaker Exchange project funded by our Osher Capacity Grant, summer term begins with a special four-session course taught by Eugene member, Ilene O’Malley. The Mexican Revolution, which began on November 20, 1910, and continued for a decade, is recognized as the first major political, social, and cultural revolution of the 20th-century. It claimed between one and two million lives and radically transformed Mexican culture and government. We are familiar with the names Emiliano Zapata and Pancho Villa, but do we remember what they were fighting for? Ilene’s presentation of the history of the Revolution consists of four parts: Part 1, the factors contributing to the revolution, the rise of prodemocracy and agrarian reform movements that brought down the 30-year dictatorship of Porfirio Diaz; Part 2, the factionalization (roughly along class lines) of the seemingly united revolutionaries; Part 3, the leftward pressures from campesino-based movements (most famously those led by Emiliano Zapata and Pancho Villa) and counterrevolutionary pressures from foreign interests; and Part 4, the gradual consolidation of a new “revolutionary” state and the emergence of a new national cultural identity, 1920–1940. Ilene O’Malley has worked on labor advocacy issues and is a former migrant farmworker attorney. Ilene has a PhD in history from the University of Michigan with a specialization in Latin America. She lived and studied in Mexico on a Fulbright Scholarship.

Single Payer Health Care for All Oregonians

Eugene/Springfield—Health care is certainly in the news lately. The Trump administration and the Republicans in Congress have been trying to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, following Trump’s campaign promise to form a health care system that was better and cheaper and would cover everyone in the country. Unfortunately, now the administration does not seem to have a very good understanding of how to do that, according to OLLI-UO member Jerry Brule, who will moderate this discussion panel.

In a free market insurance-based model, Brule says, there must be government controls on what the insurance companies can and can’t do, such as prohibiting dropping people with pre-existing conditions. To make it profitable for the Insurance companies there must be a way to attract the young and healthy to pay for the old and sick. In other words, it should look a lot like Obamacare. One alternative that the Republicans are not considering is a single payer system like Medicare for all. That seems to be the only system that would fulfill Trump’s promise of better, cheaper health care for everyone, according to Brule.

In addition to Brule, the panel will include Lou Sinniger, a Health Care for All Oregon board member; Nathan Markowitz, a doctor; and Ruth Duemler, a long-time activist. The program will feature a 30-minute film, Now Is the Time, and a discussion period.

The Real World of Jane Austen

Eugene/Springfield—In “Beyond the Miniatures: The Real World of Jane Austen,” Central Oregon author Collins Hemingway will provide an overview of the major issues of the Regency Era, similar to many issues we face today: divisive wars, labor unrest, political polarization on trade and race, and technological revolution that dramatically undermined the middle class. He also will discuss how Jane Austen’s novels fit within the framework of this exciting and often violent period and how the big issues, such as slavery and war, affected her family and writing.

Hemingway is a technologist who has written books on business and science, including one with Microsoft founder Bill Gates, and is a student of history and literature who lectures and writes about the life and times of Jane Austen.

His presentation is part of the 2016–17 OLLI-UO Speaker Exchange program partially funded by the Osher Capacity Building Grant.

Artist’s Talk: Allan Kluber

Eugene/Springfield—Ceramic artist Allan Kluber will describe the evolution of his ceramics, which are on display May 31–July 1 at the Karin Clarke Gallery, “Allan Kluber: Old Work/New Work.”

Kluber received his MFA from the UO in 1973. During the 1970s and 1980s he exhibited widely, received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Oregon Arts Commission, and taught workshops across the country. Two examples of his work from that period appear in the Lane County Public Services Building, and at “Fountain Square” at Springfield City Hall. Kluber stopped working in clay in 1986 and went on to obtain a counseling degree, to work at Lane Community College, and to produce educational videos.

Last summer, a road trip through southern Utah’s landscape of dramatic rock formations reignited his passion for clay. The result is something totally different from the fine porcelains of his earlier work. Kluber’s talk will include slides and examples of both periods of his work.

The Finnish Architect Who Humanized Modern Architecture

Eugene/Springfield—Learn about the buildings and designs of celebrated Finnish architect, Alvar Aalto, whose work brought a new sensitivity for wood, brick, and other natural materials into steel and glass rectangular modern architecture. Discover his philosophy of building and his striking architecture in Europe and Oregon.

Virginia Cartwright, UO associate professor of architecture and director of the UO Baker Lighting Lab, explores light, form, and space through her research, practice, and seminars on the architecture of Alvar Aalto and on architecture in the cinema. She also teaches courses in daylighting, electric lighting, site and climate, and media.

Eclipse! What’s the Big Deal About the Total Solar Eclipse on August 21?

Central Oregon—The first total solar eclipse touching the continental United States since 1979 touches down in Oregon on August 21. While the rest of the United States offers a longer duration of totality, sections of the eclipse path in Oregon offer the best weather prospects anywhere along the entire eclipse route. Join OLLI member Jim Hammond, as he discusses both lunar and solar eclipses, and explains some of the connections between different eclipses.

Included in his presentation are the various phenomena to be aware of and to be looking for, such as where the best place is to observe the eclipse. What are the safest ways the different phases can be observed? How you can photograph eclipse phenomena? How much you should charge for camping in your yard if you live within the path of totality, and should you even bother going anywhere or just watch the eclipse on TV?

The rarity of total solar eclipses and the limited areas on earth on which they can be observed make the upcoming eclipse exceptional for the United States as it will pass from coast to coast during the time of year having the best weather prospects.

Jim has a PhD in physics from the University of Colorado and first witnessed a total solar eclipse in 1970, just a few weeks before being awarded his diploma. He has traveled to witness two other total solar eclipses, including one in 2012 that took him to Australia. Over the years he has witnessed many lunar and partial solar eclipses.

Preregistration is required and opened on May 18.

Update

Due to member interest in the topic we are opening a second session of Jim Hammond’s talk:

What’s the Big Deal about the Total Solar Eclipse on August 21, 2017?
Tuesday, June 6, 1:30 p.m.
UOBC

Jim will discuss both lunar and solar eclipses, and explain some of the connections between different eclipses. Included in his presentation are the various phenomena to be aware of and to be looking for; where the best place is to observe the eclipse; what are the safe ways the different phases can be observed; how you can photograph eclipse phenomena; how much you should charge for camping in your yard if you live within the path of totality; and should you even bother going anywhere and just watch the eclipse on TV.

Preregistration is not required for this afternoon session. Members who have already registered for the morning session are welcome to attend the afternoon session. We hope this change will allow us to keep class size manageable for discussion. Contact the Academic Extension offices at 800-824-2714 or 541-728-0685 with any questions.

International Relations: Angela Merkel—A Leadership Profile

Eugene/Springfield–Presenter Helene-Carol Brown will cover Angela Dorothea Merkel from a biographical perspective, setting the stage for group discussion of Germany’s domestic and foreign policies including migrants and refugees, relations with the US, China, Russia, Turkey, and the European Union.

Research historian and teacher, Brown has published three historical novels. She is fascinated by the life of Merkel, one of the most important leaders in the world today.

Mexican Immigration to the United States

Eugene/Springfield–Why are there so many Mexican immigrants in the United States, and why are so many of them undocumented? In this talk, Julie M. Weise, an associate professor of history at the University of Oregon, will help us answer this question. Her presentation will discuss the history of Mexican immigration to the United States, the factors that have brought so many here, and legal changes that have left so many vulnerable to deportation. She also will be happy to engage in conversation about the Trump administration’s policies towards Mexico and Mexican immigration. Weise received her PhD from Yale University and has been at UO since 2013.