Past Events

Fall 2020 Events

Raymond Santana: From Central Park 5 to Exonerated 5
September 17, 2020, 4:30 p.m.

Wrongfully accused and convicted of a heinous crime as a teenager, exonerated years later! Join Raymond Santana and a guest interviewer on stage, to share his thoughts and insights on the US Justice System and a first-hand account of being betrayed by this system.

Building a Civic Community - Unraveling the Truth: Fake News and the Election
October 19, 2020, at 1:30 p.m.

What is Fake News? How can you tell what you are reading is not false information and what is a trusted news source? How does this relate to the upcoming presidential election and how you make your voting decisions? Journalist Emily Sweeney from the Boston Globe and Professor Laura Saunders from Simmons University will address these issues. Moderator: Sandra Rothenberg is Senior Librarian and Coordinator of Library Instruction at Framingham State University.

Building a Civic Community - Democracy in Crisis
October 27, 2020 at 5 p.m.

Dr. John Ambacher, Professor Emeritus of Framingham State University, will present on the current state of democracy. Dr. Ambacher argues that America was in crisis well before the presidential election of 2016. The crisis centered on the state of our democracy itself. A representative democracy should guarantee that every citizen has equal worth. That can only be accomplished if every citizen is guaranteed an equal freedom to vote. This is no longer the case. Dr. Ambacher will explore how we arrived at this state of affairs and what we can do to restore a representative democracy.

The Arthur Nolletti Jr. Film Series: "Just Mercy"
November 9th, 2020 7-10 p.m.

Just Mercy (2019) is an unforgettable story about Bryan Stevenson, a young African American lawyer challenging the Alabama legal system over its wrongful conviction of an innocent man sentenced to death. Based on a true story with phenomenal performances by Jamie Foxx and Michael B. Jordan, this is a must-see.

Lecture by Leslie Starobin: Looming in the Shadows of Łódź
November 10, 2020, 4:30-6 p.m.

Professor Leslie Starobin of the Art and Music Department will share her on-going project, “Looming in the Shadows of Łódź.” Please come witness the route back to the Łódź Ghetto, the last in Poland to be ‘cleansed’ of its Jews by the Nazis. Her work weaves together film clips, photographs, and oral history narratives to reveal how memories and stories of the Shoah affect multiple generations of one family. Notably, the cinematographer, Ori Segev, is the grandson of Holocaust survivors. This event will be moderated by Professor of History Lori Gemeiner Bihler. (credit to Framingham Cultural Council, FSU CELTSS, and FSU CDI)

Spring 2021 Events

I Shimmer Sometimes, Too: A Poetry Performance and workshop by Porsha Olayiwola

February 4, 2021
Workshop: 12:30-1:30.

Oftentimes, the world feels like a dark place, scarier than we could have ever imagined, tougher than we know to navigate. More often than not, however, conquering requires us to take a route contrasting our horror. For example, in order to slay Medusa, Perseus did not look directly into the monster’s eyes, but instead, used a mirror and reflection to map his triumph. As writers, we often engage traumatic or troubling experiences that require us to dig close to the bone, dive directly into the dark. In this writing workshop, participants will explore lightness as a tool, framework and pedagogy. Inspired by a lecture from Italo Calvino and using the work of Natalie Diaz and Chrysanthemum Tran, participants in this generative workshop will write poems that use lightness as an imaginative tool to enter and exit the poem. In doing so, we’ll discover what happens when we reconfigure lightness as a lens into our dystopia.

Poetry Reading: 4:30-6 p.m.,

Porsha Olayiwola, is a writer, performer, educator and curator who uses afro-futurism and surrealism to examine historical and current issues in the Black, woman, and queer diaspora. Her poetry and performances as well as her activist work around poetry and art has earned her position as the poet laureate of Boston. She will be performing poetry from her book, I Shimmer Sometimes, Too.

This event is co-sponsored by the Framingham State Council on Diversity and Inclusion (CDI).

Olivia A. Davidson Voices of Color Lecture: Eddie Moore "America is Changing: Are You Ready?"
February 17, 2021, 4:30-6 p.m.

The keynote will challenge the audience to examine and explore issues related to bias, privilege, supremacy and belief systems. Additionally, we learn how to take action against individual and systemic bigotry, privilege and oppression. We need #MooreLeaders committed to justice, equity and change across America. Are you ready? Now Is The Time for us to be #MooreWoke and #MooreFocused on inspiring #MooreGoodTrouble.

Dr. Eddie Moore, Jr. has pursued and achieved success in academia, business, diversity, leadership and community service. In 1996, he started America & MOORE, LLC to provide comprehensive diversity, privilege, leadership and #BecomingAntiRacist training/workshops. Dr. Moore is recognized as one of the nation’s top speakers and educators. His interview with Wisconsin Public Radio won the 2015 Wisconsin Broadcasters Association's Best Interview in Medium Market Radio, 1st Place, he is featured in the film “I’m not Racist….Am I?” and in the article "5 Clear Ways to Tell Whether You'll Be a Good Leader in 2021." Dr. Moore was recently named one of Wisconsin's 51 Most Influential Black Leaders and he is also the Founder/Program Director for the national/international White Privilege Conference (WPC). In 2014, Dr. Moore founded The Privilege Institute (TPI) which engages people in research, education, action and leadership through workshops, conferences, publications and strategic partnerships and relationships.

This event is co-sponsored by the Center for Inclusive Excellence.

(Un)Documents: A Solo Theater Performance by Jesús Valles
February 24, 2021, 4:30-6 p.m.

In their acclaimed solo show, (Un)Documents, award-winning actor and poet Jesús I. Valles journeys across both sides of a river with two names, moving between languages to find their place in a nation that demands sacrifice at the altar of citizenship. In doing so, they create a new kind of documentation written with anger and fierce love.

Always Faithful ... to What? A Woman Veteran Writes about Coming of Age in the Marine Corps
March 1, 2021, 4:30-6 p.m.

In her memoir Fidelis, Teresa Fazio chronicles her deployment to Iraq as a young Marine officer and homecoming as a veteran of an ongoing war. She will explore how she processed her experiences through writing and her work to explore the role of women in the military and public life.

This event is co-sponsored by the Framingham State Council on Diversity and Inclusion (CDI).

CHALLENGER: Soaring with Christa McAuliffe
March 11, 2021, 5:30-7:30

Who is America's favorite teacher? Ask anyone old enough about Christa McAuliffe and they will tell you exactly where they were when the Challenger shuttle launched; however, few people understand who Mrs. McAuliffe really was. America's Teacher in Space was an educational pioneer and her goals and accomplishments are explored in this performance.