50th Reunion Symposia Print Email

For our 50th Reunion Symposia, we will be sampling four arenas of meaning in our lives, starting with the deeply personal and journeying steadily outward from there. We will focus first on what we have come to know and feel most deeply. The wisdom that we would like to pass along to the next generation will be our starting point, and we will talk with each other in small groups following a short, large-group orientation. In the second symposium, we will explore the personal and interpersonal meanings that the arts bring into our lives, allowing for a very wide spectrum of possible engagement from personal to public. In the third symposium, we will examine the challenge of taking collective action at the societal level—a daunting task of constructing meaning in ways that we in the US do not appear to be doing as well as we could. Finally, we will look at the formidable challenges that we face as members of a global community in creating sustainable environmental and economic models for inhabiting the planet into future generations.

 

Monday, May 25
1:00-3:30
Sanders Theatre—Subsequent Breakout Rooms in Sever
Symposium: The Awakening of Wisdom—How Do We Experience and Practice It?

This symposium will be conducted in our traditional, participatory, small group discussion format. If we have really learned anything worth passing along to subsequent generations, now is the time for us to clarify what it is. How have we come by it—if we have? What are the universals that we share across generations, and what is peculiar to us at this time, if anything? How do we transmit this to the next generation? Is it even possible? Are we thinking about it, perhaps actually doing it? How? With what success? How is wisdom enriching our lives and informing our daily activity?

Discussion group leaders will include:

30 classmates from the HR Class of 1965.

Moderator: Charles W. Styron—Psychologist in Private Practice in Belmont, Former Architect.

Tuesday, May 26
9:00-10:45
Science Center Room B—Overflow into Science Center Room C
Symposium: Honoring the Arts in Life—Personal and Interpersonal Meaning.

This symposium will include some accomplished artists whom we are fortunate to have in our class. The focus will be on the experience of meaning in life through involvement with the Arts, however, rather than on great achievement. We hope to address the issue of how the arts enrich life for many of us—some of us immeasurably—and how the arts can transform the lives of us all.

Panelists include:

  • Allan Vogel—Principal Oboist of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra.
  • Chris Tanz—Public Artist in Tucson, Arizona.
  • John Wallace Morgan—Poet in Fairbanks, Alaska.
  • Thomas Kelly—Knafel Professor of Music at Harvard—“First Nights” Course.

Moderator: Eric Kraft—Novelist in New Rochelle, New York.

Tuesday, May 26
1:30-3:15
Science Center Room B—Overflow into Science Center Room C
Symposium: The Challenges of Taking Collective Action—Societal Meaning.

This symposium will address the virtual stalemate that we are currently experiencing in our public discourse in the United States—our inability as a society and as engaged individuals to make decisions or move toward decisions of a significantly important, collective nature. What are the ways forward? What changes and sacrifices must be made to get there? How is justice served in this endeavor? Is this a true reflection of our times or are we just hopelessly longing for the action and commitment of the 60’s? What can we do?

Panelists include:

  • Charles Murray—Political Scientist at the American Enterprise Institute.
  • Ilene Lang—Former President and CEO of Catalyst.
  • Bill Drayton—Social Entrepreneur, Founder of Ashoka—Innovators for the Public.
  • Howard Gardner, ’65— Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Moderator: Susan Shepard—Attorney, Former Chief Ethics Officer for Nortel Corporation.

Wednesday, May 27
1:15-3:00
Sanders Theatre
Symposium: Planning for the Seventh Generation—Global Meaning.

Most of our plans extend for a few months into the future—or at most for a few years. In the crucible of geological time, however, all of human history comprises a mere blip on the screen. If we are to survive as a species for very long (in fact, for much longer), we need to start thinking bigger with a significantly longer time frame—for the seventh generation, as the Native Americans said. This symposium will examine the issues of reconciling current global needs with the requirements for long-term global sustainability.

Panelists include:

  • Joel Cohen—Professor of Populations at Rockefeller and Columbia Universities.
  • Robert Colwell—Ecologist, Evolutionary Biologist at the University of Connecticut.
  • Dick Dunham—Of Counsel, Debevoise & Plimpton, and Board Chair, Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York
  • Dan Schrag—Sturgis Hooper Professor of Geology, Director of the Harvard University Center for the Environment.

Moderator: Jolly de Give—Former Urban Planner, Retired Conservationist in Virginia.

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