Events & Opportunities

July 9, 2019

Conversation Project: Crime and Punishment in Oregon

From prisons and youth correctional facilities to schools and county jails, we’re surrounded by institutions that punish. But why do we punish? Why is punishment sometimes sanctioned by the state? Critics of the “prison industrial complex” argue that our methods and scale of punishment are informed by profit, while tough-on-crime policymakers believe that punishment must be meaningful enough to prevent recidivism and ensure public safety. Are there other ways to punish—such as restorative justice—that may be more effective, reasonable, or desirable? Philosopher and writer Monica Mueller facilitates a conversation around these questions and others regarding our motivation, purpose, and methods of punishment.

10 a.m., Lake Oswego Adult Community Center, Lake Oswego

August 5, 2019

Conversation Project: White Allyship in Close-knit Communities

What does it mean to be a white ally, especially in close-knit, rural communities? And what does it mean to have the support of white allies? What is needed from white people in our communities to move the conversation about racism—both statewide and nationally—forward in a productive and respectful way? In this conversation led by facilitator Alexis James, participants will have the chance to explore their identities, learn how to acknowledge different lived experiences without alienating friends and neighbors, and move toward action in their own communities. This conversation will set the table for bringing discussions about racism, white culture, and identity to your dining room, living room, and backyard BBQs.

6:30, Lake Oswego United Church of Christ, Lake Oswego

August 28, 2019

Conversation Project: It's a Free Country

Ever heard the expression "America: land of the brave and free" or "It's a free country! I can do what I want"? Maybe you think or say these things yourself. But what does it mean to "be free"? Join Ann Su for a conversation that explores the impact of culture on how we define, value, and experience freedom personally and in community. Participants will discuss different questions: Does everyone have access to freedom in the same way? What choices come with freedom and what are the responsibilities that accompany those choices? How does the concept of "freedom" play out in a diverse, democratic society?

5 p.m., Lake Oswego Adult Community Center, Lake Oswego

September 16, 2019

Conversation Project: The Middle Class and Other Stories About Wealth, Status, and Power

Join Oregon Humanities Executive Director Adam Davis for a conversation that explores what we think and how we talk about class in Oregon and the nation. What exactly, for example, is the middle class, who does it include and exclude, and why does it get so much attention? When does talking about class turn into class warfare, or pandering, or simple confusion? To what extent can we talk about class without talking about race, ethnicity, and cultural background? Class is clearly related to wealth and money, but it also involves much more than that, from education to dress to the shows we watch, the words we use, and the clothes we wear. What are the measures and markers that help us recognize class, and to what extent is class useful for seeing our state, our neighbors, and ourselves?

noon, Lake Oswego Adult Community Center, Lake Oswego