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While celebrating its history during this bicentennial year, Colby is also looking ahead. What does the future hold for the liberal arts? How does this type of education fit into this constantly changing world?

A lecture series beginning in December will focus on the future of the liberal arts tradition from the perspectives of leaders from different areas of the academic spectrum. The series begins with artist and international documentarian Wendy Ewald on Thursday, Dec. 6, at 7 p.m. All events in Colby’s Distinguished Bicentennial Lecture Series are open to the public and free.

“The series brings together distinguished thinkers and creative people to discuss the ways in which the liberal arts will evolve to meet the challenges of the future,” said Colby President William D. Adams.

Ewald, a senior research associate at Duke’s Center for International Studies and an artist-in-residence at Amherst, will discuss the importance of looking and listening for the future of a global education. Said Adams, “I’m looking forward to hearing what she has to say about the future of our enterprise and about the importance of the arts in education.” Ewald’s lecture, which will incorporate her photographs, is titled Secret Games: A 21st-Century Education, and will take place in Ostrove Auditorium, Diamond Building.

Additional lectures this academic year are:

Martha Nussbaum
Thursday, Feb. 21, 7 p.m.
Ostrove Auditorium, Diamond Building
Martha Nussbaum is the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics, appointed in the law school and philosophy department at the University of Chicago, where she also is an associate in the classics department, the divinity school, and the political science department, a member of the committee on Southern Asian studies, and a board member of the human rights program.

William D. Adams
Wednesday, Feb. 27, 7 p.m.
Lorimer Chapel
William D. Adams has been president of Colby since 2000. Prior to leading Bucknell University for five years, he taught political philosophy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Santa Clara University. Adams has been an advocate of liberal arts education since his own undergraduate years at Colorado College, from which he graduated magna cum laude. He spent a year in France as a Fulbright Scholar and earned a Ph.D. in the History of Consciousness Program at the University of California at Santa Cruz.

William G. Bowen

Monday, March 18, 7 p.m.
Ostrove Auditorium, Diamond Building
William G. Bowen, president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation from 1988 to 2006, was president of Princeton University from 1972 to 1988, where he also served as professor of economics and public affairs. Bowen’s tenure at the Mellon Foundation was marked by increases in the scale of the foundation’s activities, with annual appropriations reaching $220 million in 2000.

David W. Oxtoby
Monday, April 8, 7 p.m.
Ostrove Auditorium, Diamond Building
David Oxtoby, president of Pomona College since 2003, is an internationally known physical chemist. He previously served as professor and dean of the division of physical sciences at the University of Chicago. At Pomona he is also professor of chemistry and teaches a course in environmental chemistry. He is author or coauthor of numerous scientific articles on such subjects as light scattering, chemical reaction dynamics, and phase transitions. He is the coauthor of two first-year chemistry textbooks.

Complete list of events at Colby