Carnegie Mellon University

Ideas with a Spine

Professors and students in the Department of English are doing research that examines questions both timeless and topical. They are exploring the very foundations of how we make sense of our world and  shape narratives about it. It’s work that is deeply informed by a nuanced comprehension of language, of culture, and of history. Its conclusions can be bold and polemical. These ideas find shape in words which fill pages which fill books.  

In more ways than one, these are ideas with a spine.

To spread, share, and expand on these ideas, we’re beginning a new speaker series centered around the compelling themes found in Department of English faculty’s recent publications. Starting in the Spring of 2018, we plan to host a Book Salon twice a year which has members of the Department of English in conversation about their work and the ideas that inform it. These conversations aim to be approachable and engaging and open to the entire campus community and larger public.

Past Events

Race & American Progress
With Doug Coulson & Gregory Laski 

Lady Liberty holds a refugee.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018
Rachel Mellon Walton Room
Posner Hall

Carnegie Mellon University

Who gets classified as “white”? What does progress for racial equality really look like? In two new books that examine periods of American history in which ideas about race shifted dramatically, authors Doug Coulson (Race, Nation, and Refuge, SUNY Press) and Gregory Laski (Untimely Democracy, Oxford Press) tackle these thorny, vital questions. Coulson and Laski will join together in a conversation, moderated by Andreea Ritivoi and Kathy M. Newman, to discuss race and American democracy. Reception to follow.


Event Video

Watch video of the first Book Salon featuring Doug Coulson and Gregory Laski and moderated by Andreea Ritivoi and Kathy M. Newman.