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Forum History: The 00s

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The 90s  2000-01 2001-02 2002-03 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 The Teens


FALL 2000

Pursuing a Late Justice: The Prosecution of Mississippi’s Civil Rights Murders, Then and Now
August 29, 2000 

  • Bobby DeLaughter was, at the time, a county judge who, in 1994, changed Mississippi history by prosecuting the 1963 murder of Medgar Evers.
  • Vernon Dahmer Jr. is the son of a Forrest County NAACP leader, Vernon Dahmer Sr., who was killed by Klansmen in 1966.
  • James K Dukes was, at the time, a Hattiesburg attorney who was the prosecutor in the 1968 trials of the Dahmer killers and obtained the first conviction of a white murderer of a black person in Mississippi.
  • Bob Helfrich was the Hattiesburg district attorney who successfully prosecuted the Klan’s former Imperial Wizard for the Dahmer murder in 1998.
  • Jerry Mitchell was an investigative reporter for the Clarion-Ledger whose stories led to the reopening of numerous prosecutions of civil rights killings in Mississippi.

The panel reviewed and discussed the prosecution of civil rights crimes during the civil rights era in Mississippi and at the time of their discussion.

Sponsored by the South Central Mississippi Bar Association. 

Writing about Places and People: An Evening With …September 26, 2000 

Witold Rybczynski was, at the time of his lecture, the Martin and Mary Meyerson Chair in Urbanism at the University of Pennsylvania. He wrote about people and the places they fashion in which to live.

The Money Men
October 10, 2000

Jeff Birnbaum is a journalist and commentator who, at the time of his lecture, was the chief of Fortune Magazine’s Washington bureau. He covered the intersection of government and business with an emphasis on the White House, lobbying, and national politics. He was, at one time, a Fox political analyst, and spoke about the political fundraising process and how special interests influence presidential candidates.

Galileo’s Daughter: An Evening With …
October 17, 2000

Dava Sobel is a celebrated writer who writes expositions of scientific topics. At one point, she worked as a science reporter for the New York Times and was a contributing editor of the Harvard Magazine. She spoke about her work, Galileo’s Daughter.

Report from the Future
November 7, 2000

At the time of this lecture, Polly LaBarre was the senior editor of Fast Company, a magazine concerned with business management. LaBarre was also concerned with the factors that cause change in the ways in which business is done and offered an overview of change-producing tools, techniques, and ideas.

This was the annual Boardman Business Forum and was co-sponsored by the College of Business Administration.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: War’s Invisible Wound
November 14, 2000

Leslie Root was, at the time of this Forum, a clinical psychologist who specialized in assessing and treating psychological wounding, specifically PTSD.

John Young spent most of his life in the Army and was a decorated Vietnam veteran who successfully dealt with PTSD.

Dr. Root discussed the history of PTSD and understanding, while John Young discussed his personal vision.


Around the World with the New Administration
January 23, 2001

Robin Wright is a journalist and author who, at the time, was a global affairs correspondent for the Los Angeles Times. She is known for having reported from all around the world.

A Change is Gonna Come: Black Freedom Struggle and the Transformation of American Culture, 1945 – 1975
February 13, 2001

Waldo Martin is a historian who, at the time of his lecture, was a professor of history at the University of California Berkeley.

This was the 2001 Armstrong-Branch Lecture and was co-sponsored by the African American History Month Committee.

Campaign 2000 Revisited
February 20, 2001

Dr. Douglas Brinkley is an author and historian. At the time of his lecture, he taught at the University of New Orleans and was the Director of the Eisenhower Center for American Studies. He was also a regular commentator for NPR’s Weekend Edition, was on the board of the National Faculty, and was a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is also the literary executor for the late author, and his friend, Hunter S. Thompson.

20th Century Transformations in American Women’s Lives
March 6, 2001

Dr. Susan M. Hartmann was, at the time of her lecture, a professor of History and Women’s Studies at the Ohio State University.

The Real Science Behind the X-Files: Microbes, Meteorites, and Mutants
April 3, 2001

Dr. Anne Simon is a scientist who served as a science advisor for The X-Files and guaranteed the scientific accuracy of things like cloning, genetic engineering, aging, and life on other planets for the show. She was also the editor of the international journal, Virology 

Love and Friendship in Hamlet
April 10, 2001

David Bevington is a literary scholar who, at the time of his lecture, taught at the University of Chicago. His lecture was part of USM’s celebration of the 400th Anniversary of Shakespeare’s Hamlet and was coordinated by the Moorman Distinguished Professor of English, David Berry.



FALL 2001

With CNN from Fort Wayne to Hainan Island: The Changing Face of 24-Hour, Non-Stop News
September 4, 2001


Beer and Circus: College Life and College Sports
September 25, 2001


Revisiting the Free State of Jones
October 2, 2001  

Lies Across America: What We Get Wrong About the Past and Why it Matters
October 16, 2001

James Loewen is a sociologist, historian, and author who is best known for his book, Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong.

DNA Evidence: The Innocence Project
October 30, 2001

Barry Scheck is a lawyer who received media attention while serving on O.J. Simpson’s defense team. He is the director of the Innocence Project.

Documentary Filmmaking: A Journey into the Soul of Multicultural America
November 13, 2001 


This is NOT Your Father’s Co-Op
January 15, 2002

At the time of his visit, Paul Hazen was the president and CEO of the National Cooperative Business Association. His visit was the annual Boardman Business Forum and was co-sponsored by the College of Business Administration.

Open Source Reality
February 5, 2002

Douglas Rushkoff is a media theorist who, at the time, was a commentator on NPR’s All Things Considered. He explored ways in which our reality, often perceived as fixed, is really quite malleable if we are armed with codes of reality creation.

The Black Panther Party
February 19, 2002

Clayborne Carson is a professor of history at Stanford and the director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute. He is also the director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers Project, a project that aims to edit and publish the papers of Martin Luther King, Jr. He was active in the civil rights movement and was also involved in anti-Vietnam War protests.

This was the 2002 Armstrong-Branch Lecture and was co-sponsored by the African-American History Month Committee.

Passion, Politics, and Free Expression: The Legacy of Emma Goldman
March 5, 2002

Candace Falk is a historian and the founding director of the Emma Goldman Papers Project. She researches feminism and antiwar activities, areas of interest which lead her to Goldman. 

Fundamental Islam, a Woman’s Perspective
April 2, 2002

At the time of this lecture, Halima Addou was an immigration attorney. She spoke about her own experiences as a human rights activist in the context of Algerian history and the worldview of Islamic fundamentalism. 

Eavesdropping on Dolphins
April 9, 2002

Dr. Kathleen Dudzinski studies dolphin behavior and communication. She is the founder and director of the Dolphin Communication Project and was the lead scientist for the 2000 IMAX film, Dolphins.



FALL 2002

The Judiciary and the State Supreme Court
September 10, 2002

Edwin Pittman is a jurist and politician, as well as a Hattiesburg native. He served as a justice on the Supreme Court of Mississippi from 1989 to 2001 and was Chief Justice from 2001 to 2004. He also served as the state’s Attorney General.


Rock and Roll, Politics, and Catharsis
September 24, 2002

John Kay is a rock singer, songwriter, and guitarist best known for being the frontman of the rock band Steppenwolf.

Hollywood Film: Popular Culture and Politics
October 15, 2002

At the time of this lecture, Allison Graham was a professor of film and media studies at the University of Memphis. The lecture focused on the south in film and how Hollywood addressed politics and the social struggle.

Searching for Life in the Universe: Unconventional Approaches for an Unconventional Problem
October 29, 2002

At the time of this lecture, Kenneth Nealson taught geobiology at the University of Southern California and was the co-director of the Center for Life Detection Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Comix 101
November 5, 2002

Art Spiegelman is a cartoonist, editor, and comics advocate who is known for his work as the co-founder and co-editor of Raw magazine. He is also well-known for his graphic novel, Maus

The Nature of Radical Islam
December 3, 2002

John Esposito is a professor of religion and Islamic Studies at Georgetown University who was also the founding director of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown.



Why Do People Believe Weird Things? Science and Pseudoscience in America
January 21, 2003

Michael Shermer is a science writer, science historian, and the founder of the Skeptics Society. The Skeptics Society also publishes the magazine Skeptic, of which Shermer was the founding publisher.


Made in China: Human Rights and the Global Marketplace
February 11, 2003

Harry Wu was a human rights activist who spent 19 years incarcerated by the Chinese government in a labor camp as a political prisoner. He testified before the US Congress on Chinese abuses to human rights and ultimately became a resident and citizen of the United States. He wrote the bestselling memoir, Bitter Winds, about his time in the camps.


A Historical Look at African-American Spirituals and Traditional Music
February 25, 2003

This Forum featured Benjamin Matthews, the founder of Ebony Opera; Robert Sims, an American Traditions Gold Medal winner; and Kenneth Overton, an opera singer.

This Forum was co-sponsored by the College of the Arts and Partners for the Arts. It was also supported in part by funding from the Mississippi Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts.


The Way We Really Are: Coming to Terms with America’s Changing Families and the New Roles of Women
March 18, 2003

Stephanie Coontz is an author and historian who teaches history and family studies at Evergreen State College. At the time of her lecture, she was the national co-chair of the Council on Contemporary Families. 

Cowboys & Indians: Images of Indigenous Peoples in Popular Culture
April 15, 2003

Michael Yellow Bird was, at the time of this lecture, a citizen of the Sahnish and Hidatsa First Nations who taught at Arizona State University.


FALL 2003

Who’s Afraid of Human Cloning?
September 9, 2003

Dr. Greg Pence is a philosopher who specializes in medical ethics. He is the director of the Early Medical School Acceptance Program at the University of Alabama Birmingham and was one of a few vocal opponents of President Clinton’s ban on human cloning.

Where Do Ideas Come From? A Lecture/Demonstration
September 16, 2003

Shapiro and Smith Dance was a dance company. 

Terror, Torment, and Tyranny: The State of Human Rights Today
October 14, 2003

At the time of his lecture, Dr. Bill Schulz was the director of Amnesty International (USA). 

Meeting Society’s Needs: Science in a New Era
October 21, 2003

Rita Colwell is an environmental microbiologist who, at the time of her lecture, was the director of the National Science Foundation. She studies infectious diseases. 

Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers: Stress, Disease, and Coping
November 11, 2003

Robert Sapolsky is a neuroendocrinologist and an author. 


The Race Line in American Life
February 17, 2004

Randall Kennedy is a law professor and an author who works at Harvard University. He focuses his research on racial conflict and the law in American life.

This lecture was the 2004 Armstrong-Branch Lecture and was co-sponsored by the African American History Month Committee.

Some Leaders are Born Women
March 9, 2004

Sarah Weddington is an attorney and a former member of the Texas House of Representatives who is best known for representing “Jane Roe” in the landmark case of Roe v. Wade before the United States Supreme Court. She is thought to be the youngest woman ever to win a case in the Supreme Court, was the first woman to ever hold the position of the United States Department of Agriculture General Counsel (1977) and first visited USM in the 1980s as a guest of Forum. 

Current Challenges to Civil Liberties Post 9/11
April 6, 2004

Nadine Strossen is a civil liberties activist who was the first woman and the youngest person to ever become president of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). 

American Politics: A View from home and Abroad
April 13, 2004

Andrew Sullivan is an author and a conservative political commentator who, at the time of his lecture, was an essayist for Time



FALL 2004

The Things They Carried: Memory and the Vietnam War
October 26, 2004

Tim O’Brien is a novelist who is best known for his semi-autobiographical works inspired by his experiences in the Vietnam War. 



 No information available.



FALL 2005

 No information available.


No information available.



FALL 2006

Our Environmental Destiny
October 4, 2006

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is an environmental activist and attorney who spoke about global warming and the affect it has on our lives as well as the affect it will have on the generations to come.

His appearance was sponsored by the Honors College, the College of Arts and Letters, the College of Science and Technology, the department of Political Science, and the Hattiesburg Clinic.


spring 2007

Osceola McCarthy
April 26, 2007

Rick Bragg is a journalist and writer who is best known for his non-fiction work about his family in Alabama. He won a Pulitzer Prize in 1996 for his work with The New York Times and spoke about his work on Osceola McCarthy.


FALL 2007

Political Debate
September 11, 2007

Wayne Dowdy is a politician and lawyer from Mississippi who served four terms in the United States House of Representatives. He also served as the chairman of the Mississippi Democratic Party.

Jim Herring is a lawyer and former chairman of the Mississippi Republican Party.

This Forum was a debate between the chairmen for the state of Mississippi and a voter registration booth was opened before the event.

Learning to Love Your Roots
October 9, 2007

Cat Cora is a professional chef and a USM alumna. This Forum was sponsored by the Honors College and the College of Business as both a Forum lecture and the Trent Lott Innovation Speaker Series.

From Mississippi to Mississippi: A Love Story in Three Violent, Compassionate Acts that Include The Beatles, Vietnam, and Your Personal History
December 4, 2007

Deborah Wiles is an award-winning children’s book author whose lecture was sponsored by the Honors College and the De Grummond Children’s Literature Collection.


One Woman Show
February 12, 2008

Graziella Rossi performed a one-woman play about Sabine Spielrein, a patient of and mistress to C.G. Jung. The themes of the play were the correspondence between Jung and Freud, Spielrein’s work as a psychiatrist, and her tragic murder by the Nazis. Rossi was accompanied by USM and Honors College alumnus, Harry White. 

Unclaimed Legacy: Beyond Civil Rights
February 19, 2008

Jeff Johnson is a journalist who appeared on the BET television show Rap City and spoke about issues such as violence and voting. His appearance was the 2008 Armstrong-Branch lecture and was co-sponsored by the Vice President for Student Affairs and the African American History Committee.

Worked with African American History Committee.

Title Unknown
March 4, 2008

Dan Capper was, at the time, a professor of religion and philosophy at USM and spoke about Tibet.

Title Unknown
March 18, 2008

At the time of this lecture, Robert Robbins was the chair of Stanford’s Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery and spoke on his stem cell research. 

Title Unknown
April, 2008 (exact date unknown)

Speaker from NASA


FALL 2008

No information available.


Title Unknown
March 10, 2009

5 Piece Jazz Ensemble 


FALL 2009

 No information available.


 No information available.

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