Hamline News

Whiteness and Elections and The Politics of Social Identity


Hamline University will host distinguished philosopher Dr. Linda Martín Alcoff as the featured speaker for the 32nd annual Hanna Lectures. This year’s presentations, “Whiteness and Elections” and “The Politics of Social Identity” are on Wednesday, April 13, 2016 at 8 p.m. and Thursday, April 14, 2016 at 11:30 a.m. respectively in the Kay Fredericks Room of the Klas Center. The event is free and open to the public. No RSVP is necessary.

A distinguished professor of philosophy at Hunter College and CUNY Graduate Center, Alcoff writes on topics such as critical race theory, feminist theory, and epistemology. She uses philosophical analysis to lend a new view to politics and culture. Her latest book The Future of Whiteness examines the evolving role of race in culture. Alcoff’s accomplishments include serving as the president of the American Philosophical Association, Eastern Division and as co-director of the Society for Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy.

While her lecture will provide philosophy students with a unique opportunity of hearing contemporary research from a nationally recognized philosopher, the talk will appeal to students, staff, and faculty across disciplines. Hanna Professor of Philosophy Nancy Holland explained that Alcoff gives a unique perspective on modern cultural issues.

“Alcoff provides an enlightening view of how politics are playing out in society,” Holland said. “Philosophy gives another layer of analysis on what is going on in culture, like an op-ed with even deeper examination.”

The Hanna Lectures were established in 1982 by Paul Robert and Jean Shuman Hannah ’24, and have become a valuable experience for Hamline philosophy majors as well as the university community at large. Each year, nationally recognized scholars in philosophy are invited to share their research and perspectives and students are invited to a post-lecture conversation with the guest. Some notable past speakers include Noam Chomsky, bell hooks, and Cornel West.