Stories this week at WFU

EUGENICS SCHOLAR TO SPEAK — Johanna Schoen, professor of history and women’s studies at the University of Iowa, will present the lecture “Eugenic Sterilization in North Carolina: History and its Lessons” today at 4:30 p.m. The free, public lecture will be in the Carswell Reading Room on the second floor of Carswell Hall. Schoen’s research uncovered the details of state-sanctioned eugenics and forced sterilization in North Carolina. In her upcoming book, “A Great Thing for Poor Folks: Birth Control, Sterilization, and Abortion in Public Health and Welfare in the Twentieth Century” (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press), Schoen examines the history of women’s reproductive control between the 1920s and the 1970s.

WFU GUEST LECTURER TO DISCUSS MEDIA AND NATIONAL DEFENSE — Robert Entman, professor of communication at North Carolina State University, will give a free, public lecture, “Media and the National Defense After 9/11,” at Wake Forest at 7 p.m. tonight in the law auditorium, Room 1312, of the university’s Worrell Professional Center. Entman’s research and teaching have focused on political communication and communication policy. He has taught at N.C. State since 1994 and is the author of several award-winning books including “Democracy Without Citizens: Media and the Decay of American Politics,” “Mediated Politics: Communication in the Future of Democracy,” and “The Black Image in the White Mind: Media and Race in America.” To arrange coverage of the lecture, contact Jacob McConnico at or 336-758-5237.

AFRICAN DRUM, DANCE GROUP KICKS OFF UNIQUE SERVICE-LEARNING PROJECT — To generate interest in her unique fund-raising and international service learning project, Wake Forest Junior Rosita Najmi and others with Project Bokonon enlisted the support of one of the Southeast’s best African dance companies. The West African Dance Company and Djembe (drum) Orchestra will perform free for the public in Wait Chapel at 8 p.m. tonight. Project Bokonon (“medicine man”) is a Wake Forest student-led nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide better health care to the residents of Benin, West Africa. The group was started after a 2001 study abroad trip to Benin, Assistant Professor of Economics Sylvain Boko’s homeland. The group will give out fresh pineapple and draw several raffle prizes during tonight’s event. To arrange coverage of the event or an interview with Najmi, contact Sarah Mansell at or 336-758-5237.

HISTORIANS TO DISCUSS THOMAS DIXON, WHOSE BOOK WAS BASIS FOR ‘BIRTH OF A NATION’ — To examine issues of race, religion, gender and the power of popular fiction and film, Wake Forest will hold a symposium on “Thomas Dixon Jr. and the Making of Modern America” April 10-12. Dixon is known best as the author of “The Clansman,” the book upon which D.W. Griffith based his pioneering and controversial 1915 film “The Birth of a Nation.” Organized by Randal Hall, associate director of merit-based scholarships, and Michele Gillespie, associate professor of history, the symposium will feature a screening of “The Birth of a Nation,” and lectures by leading scholars on topics such as “Southern Reaction to ‘The Clansman’ on Stage and Screen.” “Dixon’s life demonstrates how deeply racism and conservative views of gender penetrated American culture,” Hall said. “In this symposium, we will evaluate Dixon’s dual roles as not only a creator of cultural attitudes regarding race and other issues, but also as a reflection of the biases of his time.”

DO MOVIES HAVE RIGHTS? — The Thomas Dixon symposium will close with a talk titled “Do Movies Have Rights?” by Louis Menand, Pulitzer Prize-winning author and culture critic for The New Yorker. Menand is Distinguished Professor of English at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. The talk will begin at 6 p.m. April 12 in Wake Forest’s Scales Fine Arts Center, Room 102. Admission is free and open to the public.

To arrange coverage of the Thomas Dixon symposium, contact Cheryl Walker at or 336-758-5237. For a schedule of events see the Dixon Symposium site.

OPRAH’S FIRST ‘PHENOMENAL MAN’ BOOK SIGNING AT WFU — Ron Clark, Oprah Magazine’s first “Phenomenal Man,” will sign copies of his new book, “The Essential 55,” April 15 from noon – 2 p.m. in the College Book Store. A fifth-grade teacher at Harlem’s Public School 83 and the 2000 Disney American Teacher of the Year, Clark based his book on his unusual yet effective teaching style. The event is free and open to the public. Featured on “Oprah” and invited three times to the White House, Clark has gained national recognition for his innovative teaching. ABC is turning his life story into a Sunday Night Movie of the Week. To arrange an interview with Clark, contact Cheryl Walker at or 336-758-5237.

WFU BONE MARROW DRIVE PERSONAL CHALLENGE FOR PROFESSOR — Gary Miller has watched his mother-in-law, Shirley, wait for months to receive a bone marrow transplant. She suffers from myeloid dysplasia, one of around 60 life-threatening diseases treated with bone marrow transplantation. Miller, an associate professor of health and exercise science at Wake Forest, decided to do something about it. He and his wife, Jill, organized a bone marrow donor drive at Wake Forest from 1-6 p.m. April 15 to help bring awareness of the need for bone marrow donors across the country. The drive will be in Benson University Center, Room 401. To arrange an interview with Miller and his family, contact Sarah Mansell at or 336-758-5237.

Stories this week at WFU

Categories: Arts & Culture, Community, Events, Faculty, Speakers