So every year Carleton host hundreds of speakers (that might be a gross exaggeration but my point is that we have lots of speakers come to campus every year). This week alone we had four speakers (not including our weekly convocation speaker). I find that the frequent presence of speakers on the campus provides students not only the opportunity to contextualize material that they may already be learning, or the chance to learn something new, but most importantly the convenience of putting a face to some of the most proactively issues/topics that are being researched.
This week I went to several talks, but the one I enjoyed most was "Stevie Wonder's 'Songs in the Key of Life' as a cultural artifact of the Long Civil Rights Movement," a lecture given by Professor Kevin Gaines who is a Professor of History and Afroamerican and African Studies at the University of Michigan. His lecture explored the connection between Stevie Wonder's music and the Civil Rights movement. Though several of Stevie Wonder's most popular songs were recorded during the time of the Civil Rights Movement I had never thought about the connection between the two. (On that note I never think about the connection between music and any social movement.)
This lecture explained to me that if you look for a lot of the ideas and messages that were being preached during the Civil Rights Movement you can find them imparted in not only Stevie Wonder's music but other African American artist making and recording music at that time in Americas history. So I guess at Carleton you learn something new every day.
The opportunity to hear speakers from an array of disciplines definitely contributes to and soothes our intellectual curiosity here at Carleton.
People love speaking at Carleton!