Dialogues Across Differences Series

The Clarke Forum partners with the Dialogues Across Differences (DXD) project to enrich campus and community discussions, offer new perspectives, and create opportunities for dialogue about the contemporary issues that affect local and global communities. DXD introduces students to new ideas without the threat of derision or dignitary harm. Dickinson’s multi-pronged approach to teaching and promoting productive dialogue methods and techniques imparts strategies to create community agreements and expectations; ask questions that seek to build understanding, rather than operating from a place of fear; foster trust; and listen carefully—especially when there is disagreement.

Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Poster for Free Speech on Campus

Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium – 7 p.m.

Free Speech on Campus

Sigal Ben-Porath, Professor at the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania

Free speech, a staple of modern democracy, has become the focal point for political and cultural forces impacting universities. Higher education is charged with the mandate to expand the boundaries of knowledge; to disseminate knowledge through teaching and other modes; and to serve the public by training citizens and leaders. To do so it must ensure that a broad range of views and approaches are discussed openly. But should all speech be protected in the name of free inquiry? Should the universities allow bigotry or exclusionary speech that targets specific groups? Should it make room for misinformation? Recent speech controversies around the globe expose the difficulty in carving a response in this polarized time. This struggle over the boundaries of speech is based in disagreement over core democratic principles. A democratic framework of inclusive freedom will be presented and defended. It reflects the values of protecting free thought, inquiry and expression, and maintaining a commitment to the dignity of all campus members.

This event is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and is Read more