Philosopher Thomas Nagel To Speak at Amherst College April 3

March 13, 2003
Director of Media Relations
413/542-8417

AMHERST, Mass.- Thomas Nagel, professor of philosophy and law at the New York University School of Law, will speak on "Moral Realism and Moral Objectivity" on Thursday, April 3, at 4:30 p.m. in the Cole Assembly Room. This talk, sponsored by the Department of Philosophy at Amherst College and the Forry Fund in Philosophy and Science as part of a series on "Objectivity in Science and Ethics," will be free and open to the public.

Nagel is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the British Academy, and has held fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Science Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is the author of The Possibility of Altruism (1970), Mortal Questions (1979), The View From Nowhere (Oxford, 1986), What Does It All Mean? (Oxford, 1987), Equality and Partiality (1991), Other Minds (1995) and The Last Word (1997).

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"The Death of Victor Hartmann" Performed at Amherst College March 29 and 30

March 12, 2003
Director of Media Relations
413/542-8417

AMHERST, Mass.-Amherst College will present "The Death of Victor Hartmann," an original staging of vocal and piano music of Modest Musorgsky, on Saturday, March 29, at 8 p.m. and on Sunday, March 30, at 3 p.m. in Buckley Recital Hall at Amherst College. Both performances will be free and open to the public.

Musorgsky's Songs and Dances of Death, interwoven with his Nursery Songs and selections from Pictures at an Exhibition, will be performed in a staging created by world-renowned set and costume designer John Conklin, assistant artistic director of the Glimmerglass Opera, and Jenny Kallick, professor of music at Amherst College, with lighting design by Michael Baumgarten, visiting lecturer in music at Amherst College. The drama evokes 19th-century Russia in scenes drawn from the world of Victor Hartmann, the artist whose sudden death inspired the composition of Pictures at an Exhibition. Bass Valerian Ruminski, who has appeared with companies such as the Metropolitan Opera and the New York City Opera, will sing the two song cycles in an arrangement by composer Richard Beaudoin, and the performance will also feature cellist Matt Haimovitz, clarinetist Patrick Messina, violinist Christoph Franzgrote, pianist William Hicks and actor Michael Rhoton.


Further information is available at 413/542-2195. The Amherst College Concert Office has a Website at www.amherst.edu/~concerts.

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Amherst College Senior James Orsher to Present New Opera March 8

March 6, 2003
Director of Media Relations
413/542-8417

AMHERST, Mass.- Amherst College senior James Orsher will present a performance of his new opera, The Antliaclasts, on Sunday, March 9, at 3 p.m. in Buckley Recital Hall in the Arms Music Center. The performance is free and open to the public. There will also be an open dress rehearsal at 8 p.m. on Saturday, March 8.

The Antliaclasts
will be directed by Garon Taylor-Tyree '03E; Orsher will conduct. Performers include Amherst students as well as Five-College undergraduates and professional musicians; principal vocalists are Emily Frey '04, Rob Lane '04, Dan Leistra '03, Joshua Mitnick '05, Dave Stasiak '03, Geoffrey Walter '04, Jeffrey Wang '03 and Alexis Weiss '04.

Orsher, a music major, has spent the past academic year composing and producing this hour-long work as his senior thesis. The project represents the culmination of his four years of music instruction at Amherst under Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Lewis Spratlan, as well as a summer position at Glimmerglass Opera Company in Cooperstown, N.Y. The one-act, three-scene opera includes 14 orchestral parts as well as a four-part chorus and eight solo roles. The libretto is adapted from a late 19th-century play of the same name by French playwright Alfred Jarry, translated by Paul Edwards in 1994. Orsher cites Bach, Stravinsky, Ligeti, Holliger, and John Adams among his musical influences.


For further information, contact James Orsher at jnorsher@amherst.edu or 413/542-2426. This project is sponsored by the Amherst College Music Department and the Alpha Delta Phi Fund.

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Lawyer Sarah Weddington To Speak at Amherst College April 10

March 6, 2003
Director of Media Relations
413/542-8417

AMHERST, Mass.- Sarah Weddington, the lawyer who successfully argued that women have a fundamental right to choose abortion, will speak on Thursday, April 10, at 7:30 p.m., in Johnson Chapel at Amherst College. This event is sponsored by the Amherst College Feminist Alliance, the Department of Women's and Gender Studies, the Association of Amherst Students, the Everywoman's Center at the University of Massachusetts and the Amherst College Lecture Fund and Student Activities Fund.


In 1973, at age 26, Weddington argued the winning side of the landmark Roe v. Wade case before the United States Supreme Court. She is thought to be the youngest woman ever to win a case in the Supreme Court.


Weddington, who in 1972 was the first woman elected to the Texas House of Representatives, served three terms before becoming the U.S. Department of Agriculture's General Counsel in 1977. She was the first woman to ever hold that position.


An assistant to the President of the United States from 1978 to 1981, she was designated by President Carter to direct the Administration's work on women's issues and leadership outreach.


Weddington is the author of A Question of Choice, which details the Roe v. Wade case. A law professor at the University of Texas at Austin, she also writes and travels extensively, speaking on women's issues and the development of leadership skills. She is currently working on her next book, on leadership and self-renewal.

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Michael Ignatieff To Speak April 8 at Amherst College

March 6, 2003
Director of Media Relations
413/542-8417

AMHERST, Mass.-Michael Ignatieff, the John J. McCloy '16 Professor of American Institutions and International Relations at Amherst College and professor of human rights at Harvard University, will deliver a lecture at Amherst College on "The Lesser Evil: Political Ethics in an Age of Terror," on Tuesday, April 8 at 7:30 p.m. in the Cole Assembly Room in Converse Hall. The event will be free and open to the public.

Ignatieff directs the Carr Center of Human Rights Policy at Harvard. Concerned with ethnic war, he has traveled to Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia, Rwanda and Afghanistan to consider the mix of moral solidarity and hubris that has led Western nations to attempt the improvement of the world. His essay, "The Burden," about the complications of American empire in the Iraq war, appeared in The New York Times Sunday Magazine January 5. Educated in Canada at Upper Canada College and Trinity College, Toronto and abroad at Harvard and Cambridge Universities, Ignatieff explores themes of war and modernity in his work.

His academic publications include Wealth and Virtue: The Shaping of Political Economy in the Scottish Enlightenment (1983), The Needs of Strangers: An Essay on the Philosophy of Human Needs (1984), The Rights Revolution (1991), The Warrior's Honor: Ethnic War and the Modern Conscience (1998), Virtual War: Kosovo and Beyond (2000), Human Rights as Politics and Idolatry (2001) and Isaiah Berlin: A Life (1998).

His popular work also includes The Russian Album, A Family Memoir (1987) and Scar Tissue (1994), a novel short-listed for the Booker Prize.

The John J. McCloy '16 Professorship was established at Amherst College in 1983 to honor John J. McCloy and his outstanding career of service and accomplishment in American politics and international diplomacy. Ignatieff's visit is hosted by the Amherst College Department of Political Science.

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Contact

Peter Rooney
Director of Public Affairs
(413) 542-2321
prooney@amherst.edu