UNK- F.W. de Klerk, former president of South Africa, will speak Feb. 10 at the Lied Center for Performing Arts in Lincoln, as part of the 2008-09 E.N. Thompson Lectures on World Issues.
The lecture will be simulcast to the University of Nebraska at Kearney campus where it can be viewed in Room 101 in the Communications Center, located on the UNK West Campus. The presentation, which is supported by the Cooper Foundation, is free and open to the public.
De Klerk’s lecture is entitled “Bridging the Gap: Globalization without Isolation.” During his time as president of South Africa, de Klerk released Nelson Mandela from prison, and initiated and presided over the dismantling of apartheid, the adoption of South Africa’s first fully democratic constitution and the first-ever multiracial elections. In 1993, Mandela and de Klerk shared the Nobel Peace Prize.
One of the most influential statesmen of our time, de Klerk founded and is currently chairman of the Global Leadership Foundation, a consortium of former heads of state dedicated to promoting peace, democracy and development worldwide by providing confidential peer-to-peer advice to governments around the world.
The theme of this year’s Thompson lecture series is “Democracy’s Future,” with speakers exploring diverse facets of a complex question by looking through the lenses of history, philosophy, religion, globalization, conflict, economics and citizenship to provide insights into the ideal and the reality, the promise and the challenge of democracy in the 21st century.
Remaining lecturers in the series are Sarah Chayes on “Notes from Afghanistan,” March 4; Michael Olivas and Vernon Briggs on “Illegal Immigrants: Path to Citizenship?” March 25; and Colin G. Campbell on “Citizenship in a Global Age,” April 14.