Taliban Expert Ahmed Rashid to Speak at Pitzer College

Visit to be Followed by Symposium Surrounding

“Just War Doctrine in the Age of Terror”

Claremont, Calif. (Jan. 8, 2003) — Ahmed Rashid, recognized as one of the world’s leading authorities on the Taliban, will speak on his new book, “Jihad: The Rise of Militant Islam in Central Asia,” at Pitzer College on Feb. 7. The talk, which is free and open to the public, will take place from 3-5 p.m. in Avery Auditorium.

Rashid’s new book explains the roots of fundamentalist rage in Central Asia, describes the goals and activities of its militant organizations and suggests methods to neutralize the threat and bring stability to the region. During his talk at Pitzer, Rashid will concentrate on Chapters 10 and 11 of the book, discussing the relevance of Pakistan’s role and how it involves the future of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Based in Lahore, Pakistan, Rashid also is the author of “Taliban.” As a correspondent for the Far Eastern Economic Review and The Daily Telegraph, Rashid has spent more than 20 years traveling with the Taliban and covering civil war in Afghanistan. In high demand since Sept. 11, 2001, Rashid has appeared on many TV and radio news shows, spoken at universities around the world, and has consulted with the State Department. He also is a frequent contributor to the New York Review of Books.

Pitzer also will play host to a panel discussion of “Just War Doctrine in the Age of Terror” from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Feb. 14. The event will be the keynote session of a symposium titled “The Search for Social Justice,” and is part of a weeklong celebration surrounding the inauguration of Pitzer’s fifth President Laura Skandera Trombley. The symposium will be held in Avery Auditorium, and is free to the public.

The panel will be led by Richard A. Falk, the Albert G. Milbank Professor of International Law and Practice, Emeritus and Professor of Politics and International Affairs, Emeritus at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.

Falk has written many articles on international law, the New World Order and international justice. Among his books are “International Human Rights Law and Practice: Cases, Treaties and Materials” and “Predatory Globalization: A Critique.”

Commentators will be Martha Crenshaw, professor of government and the Colin and Nancy Campbell Professor of Global Issues and Democratic Thought at Wesleyan University; and David G. Winter, professor of psychology at the University of Michigan. Crenshaw is an internationally recognized authority on the problems of political violence, and Winter’s research has focused on the psychological aspects of conflict escalation, war and peace. The organizer and presider will be Dana Ward, professor of political studies at Pitzer. Ward has written about moral reasoning, foreign policy and gender. He currently is the executive director of the International Society of Political Psychology.

The panel will address the question of whether or not terrorism presents a sufficiently new challenge to call into question Just War Doctrine and instruments of International Law, which incorporate Just War principles. Do we need new principles and laws for containing terrorism, or are existing laws and doctrine sufficiently robust to guide our response to increasing political violence?

Other symposiums taking place that day will be “From the Ground Up: Living Justice on Campus,” from 10:30 a.m. to noon, and “Issues in Social Justice: Student Projects & Papers from the First-Year Seminars,” from 4 to 5:15 p.m.

Speakers for “From the Ground Up” include Paul Faulstich, associate professor of environmental studies at Pitzer; Kathryn Miller, associate professor of art at Pitzer; Jason Venetoulis, visiting professor of environmental studies at Pitzer; and Mark von Wodtke, Claremont Environmental Design Group and professor emeritus in the College of Environmental Design at Cal Poly Pomona.

Wodtke is the founder of Energy Harvester and has more than 30 years of professional experience in doing regenerative designs for renewable energy systems integrated into both architecture and landscape.

This symposium will challenge the usual notion of “justice” to include issues of environmental sustainability. Taking Pitzer as a case study, speakers will discuss ecological design and how it interfaces with social justice. Bringing this theme back home, there will be an exploration of new options for residential facilities on campus that incorporate socially and ecologically just design.

The session will include brainstorming design features that will help Pitzer envision ways in which the community can “live justice” on campus.

“Issues in Social Justice” will present several examples of work completed by students focusing on the theme of the seminars. Presiders will be Mita Banerjee, associate professor psychology, and Brian Keeley, assistant professor of philosophy. The inaugural symposium was inspired by Pitzer’s First-Year Seminar program, which encourages the development of each student’s potential for becoming a more literate person who thinks, reads, writes and speaks with competence and discrimination. While each seminar has a different instructor, topic and body of readings, the focus this year has been on “The Search for Social Justice.”

The inauguration of President Trombley will take place at 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 15. The week of events surrounding the inauguration will be kicked off Monday, Feb. 10 with a student raffle to determine the winner of “President for a Day.” The president and the winning student will then exchange places from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 13. There also will be a Marquis Library Fireside Chat with emeriti faculty at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 11. On Sunday, Feb. 16 there will be Community Work Day held in the Arboretum.

The inaugural celebration also marks the beginning of a yearlong celebration of Pitzer’s 40th anniversary. A “Pitzer at 40” campus-wide exhibit will open Wednesday, Feb. 12.

Partial funding for “The Search for Social Justice” symposium is provided by Campus Life Committee. Lunch also may be purchased at the dining hall for $4.25 the day of the symposium.

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