Carnegie Mellon Press Release: March 16, 2004
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Press Release

Jonathan Potts

For immediate release:
March 16, 2004

Going to the Chapel? Carnegie Mellon Puts Marriage under the Microscope

PITTSBURGH—The institution of marriage, these days much on the minds of pundits and presidential candidates, will get the scholarly treatment when the Humanities Center at Carnegie Mellon University holds a panel discussion, "Freedom in Marriage/Freedom To Marry," at 4:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 30. The forum will take place at Carnegie Mellon in the Adamson Wing of Baker Hall.

During the event, three Carnegie Mellon professors will discuss their research into marriage. Robert Cavalier, an associate teaching professor of philosophy, will explore the ethical issues that arise from the marriage vows to love "until death do us part." English Professor David Shumway, the director of the Humanities Center, will talk about changing conceptions of marriage as portrayed in popular books and films of the 20th century. Shumway is the author of the recently published book, "Modern Love: Romance, Intimacy and the Marriage Crisis." Tera Hunter, an associate professor of history, will discuss her research into the restrictions placed on African Americans' freedom to marry both during slavery and after emancipation. Together, the panelists will show how the institution of marriage is more complicated a matter than most people realize.

The Humanities Center is a collaboration of faculty members from all four humanities departments: English, History, Modern Languages and Philosophy. Its goals are to strengthen research and teaching in the humanities; to foster collaborations among the humanities faculty and between humanities faculty and faculty in other disciplines; and to nurture a greater role for the humanities in an increasingly technological and global society.


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