University College to present ‘From Athens to Ferguson’ lecture series

Recent events in Ferguson, Missouri, and elsewhere, have raised fundamental questions concerning justice, race and urban life. Please join us as Washington University faculty from Classics, History, Architecture and English and African-American Studies, examine related questions in a series of lectures in Washington University’s Master of Liberal Arts (MLA) Saturday Lecture Series, running throughout February. Now in its 34th year, the popular MLA series addresses a common theme from a variety of cultural, social, and academic perspectives.

The 2015 Series, entitled “From Athens to Ferguson,” addresses broad questions about justice and community: What has been, what is, and what should be the nature of full citizenship in an urban community? What are the dynamics at work? What do individuals and groups owe each other? What are the public virtues that define a healthy community? And how has, and how should, the history of race in America inflect such questions?

Free and open to the public, the series is sponsored by University College, the professional and continuing education division in Arts & Sciences.

The lectures begin February 7 and are offered every Saturday in February. All talks are set for 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. on the Danforth Campus.

Dates, topics and faculty speakers:

Feb. 7
Athens—A Place to Begin
Susan Rotroff, Professor, Department of Classics, Jarvis Thurston and Mona Van Duyn Professor in the Humanities
Location: January Hall, Room 110

Feb. 14
Designing a Sustainable Future in a Divided City: Johannesburg and St. Louis
John Hoal, Associate Professor, Chair, Master of Urban Design Program
Location: January Hall, Room 110

Feb. 21
Freedom’s Ballot: African-American Political Struggles in Chicago from Abolition to the Great Migration
Margaret Garb, Associate Professor, Department of History
Location: McDonnell Hall, Room 162

Feb. 28
Night and the City: Race, Riots, and the Rise and Fall of Urban America
Gerald Early, Merle King Professor of Modern Letters; Professor of English; Director, African & African-American Studies
Location: January Hall, Room 110

Lectures may be attended individually or in the entire series, but RSVPs are requested. To learn more and to RSVP, visit or call (314) 935-6700.

About University College
Originally founded in 1853 to serve the diverse educational needs of the St. Louis area, Washington University continues to grow and thrive more than 150 years later. The University began operating an evening program in 1854, providing industrial training and general courses outside of normal working hours to the city’s burgeoning population. Addressing the needs of local teachers, Washington University Extension was begun in 1908, and, after much expansion and diversification, became University College in 1931.

Today, University College offers part-time, evening and summer classes to students who want to earn undergraduate or graduate degrees, certificates in specialized areas of study, or pursue personal enrichment.

For more information about University College, visit or call (314) 935-6700.