The public is invited to a free Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) Vital Issues Forum on Sunday, March 7 from 2:00 to 3:30 pm. Guest speaker Lauren Kessler, Ph.D. is the author of five works of narrative nonfiction, including Stubborn Twig, a story about the experience of several generations of a family residing in the Hood River area who were directly affected by the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II. Stubborn Twig was chosen to be the book all Oregon should read in celebration of the state’s 150th birthday, and it is the inspiration for the topic of this Vital Issues Forum: Civil Rights in Times of Crisis — The Japanese-American Experience. Following Kessler’s presentation, a panel discussion and audience Q & A will highlight the legal and moral issues of this wartime internment, as well as recent parallels. The Japanese-American experience is a cautionary example of the excesses of fear and how that fear could affect individuals and groups in our country. Kessler will be available for a booksigning.
In addition to Kessler’s five books, her essays have appeared in The New York Times magazine, The Los Angeles Times Sunday Magazine, O magazine, newsweek.com, Salon, The Nation and Oregon Quarterly. Kessler currently directs the graduate program in literary nonfiction at the University of Oregon in Eugene and contributes articles on the craft of writing for Writer’s Digest magazine. National audiences have enjoyed Kessler’s talks and lectures; she has even appeared twice on the David Letterman show.
While admission is free, tickets are required because the capacity of the venue for this Forum, the Arena Room of the SOU Stevenson Union, is limited to 275. Tickets can be obtained tickets at the SOU Campbell Center, 655 Frances Lane, Ashland or at the front desk of the RCC-SOU Higher Education Center, 101 S. Bartlett Street, Medford, or by calling 541-552-6048 to ask that tickets be held at the Will Call desk the day of the event.?
Event Location: Arena Room, SOU Stevenson Union, 1050 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland, OR 97520, (park on S. Mountain Ave.)