E.N. Thompson Lecture Series presentation, ‘Democracy and Religion: American and Israel,’ to be simulcast at UNK Tuesday, Oct. 28

Dr. John Anderson
American Democracy Project coordinator, 308.865.8171

TOPIC: “Democracy and Religion: America and Israel,” part of the 2007-08 series of E.N. Thompson Lectures on World Issues to be simulcast Tuesday, Oct. 28 

N E W S  R E L E A S E:

A constitution does not stand apart from moral principles or restrict itself to empowering legislatures, judiciaries, executive officers and agencies, according to Ronald Dworkin, who will deliver a lecture Oct. 28 entitled “Democracy and Religion: America and Israel,” as part of the 2007-08 series of E.N. Thompson Lectures on World Issues. 

Dworkin’s lecture, which originates from the Lied Center for Performing Arts at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, will be simulcast at
7 p.m. in Room 101 at the Communications Center at the University of Nebraska at Kearney. 

“At least in the United States, the Constitution, taken together with the Bill of Rights, expresses a deeply moral vision of the character of the polity whose constitution it is,” wrote Sir Neil MacCormick of Dworkin’s political philosophy in the Times Literary Supplement last year. 
“The empowering that the Constitution effects is empowerment within a morally defined framework; the dynamic constitution lies within a somewhat more static moral order.”

Dworkin is a professor of philosophy and law at New York University and a professor of law at University College London. In 2007, he was awarded the prestigious Holberg International Memorial Prize by the University of Bergen, Norway, for outstanding scholarly work in 
the humanities. He has written influential articles on matters of public and political controversy for many years. Among his many acclaimed books are “Taking Rights Seriously,” “Justice in Robes” and “Is Democracy Possible Here? Principles for New Political Debate.” 

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. 

Upcoming lecturers in the series are: 

Theodore C. “Ted” Sorensen on “America and the World, 1962 to 2008: Contrasts and Contradictions,” Nov. 18;

F.W. de Klerk on “Bridging the Gap: Globalization without Isolation,” Feb. 10;

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. 

The Thompson Forum brings a diversity of viewpoints on international and public policy issues to the citizens of Nebraska at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. The series was named in honor of E.N. Jack Thompson, who served as president of the Cooper Foundation from 
1964 to 1990 and as its chairman from 1990 until his death in 2002. Thompson established the series to promote better understanding of world events and issues for all Nebraskans. All simulcasts are free and open to the public.