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Events & Exhibits: Spring 2017 Brown Bag Talks

Drinking from the Fire hose: How to add A to STEM to create the UNCA STEAM studio

Thursday, January 26

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Brent Skidmore, Department of Art and Art History, and members of the STEAM studio team

"Drinking from the Fire hose: How to add A to STEM to create the UNCA STEAM studio"

Join us for a lively conversation about the new STEAM studio at the River Arts Makers Place. Members of the collaborative team, Brent, Rebecca Bruce and others, will talk about their dreams in cross-disciplinary work and collaborations thus far in art and engineering. See examples of the Creative Fabrication course taught as the STEAM studio came on line. You will hear about the process of designing such a space, fundraising efforts and hopefully connect to a possible application in your life, studio, classroom or community where you can use some STEAM!

 

Ten months in Nepal: People, mountains, rivers, and fish!

Thursday, February 9

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

David Gillette, Department of Environmental Studies

I spent the 2015-2016 academic year on sabbatical studying fish diversity in the Himalayan nation of Nepal, including an examination of potential effects of climate change. In this presentation, I will discuss my experiences, including background, stories, pictures and data. The presentation will be part research seminar, and part travelogue!

A dual approach to intelligence and morality: the artificial agency case

Thursday, February 16

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Ioan Muntean, Humanities Program

This presentation argues for a dual approach to intelligence and morality for (a) human agents and (b) artificial agents. First, the presentation addresses these questions: to what extent can we generalize our human intelligence and morality to artificial agents? What is the relation between the “natural” and the “artificial,” especially when it comes to mental faculties? The focus is more on the similarities between these two capacities, and less on differences. Some concepts such as learning, improving, developing are crucial to both intelligence and morality. Based on some results in virtue ethics (J. Driver), on pragmatism, as well as from cognitive science (Churchland, Flanagan), this presentation argues that in the case of artificial agents the class of hybrid models, driven by two (or more) theories about both intelligence and morality, are more suitable. The relatively stronger connection between artificial intelligence (AI) and artificial morality (AM) is spelled out in terms of common ground concepts such as: learning, adaptation, selection. A quick discussion on the AI Singularity in the light of dual models follows.
 

Thursday, February 23

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Heidi Kelley, Department of Sociology and Anthropology

Ken Betsalel, Department of Political Science

"Ethnography as Pilgrimage"

To be an ethnographer is to be a kind of pilgrim, a leave taking and return, but unlike the pilgrim our goal as ethnographers is not personal and spiritual transformation as much as cultural and political insight. This presentation reports on our Fall 2016 Professional Development Leave to Galicia, Spain where one of us has conducted research as an anthropologist since 1985 and the other since 1996 as a political theorist and documentary photographer. Our PDL also included continuation of field work closer to home on Burton Street, a historically working class African American neighborhood in West Asheville where since August of this year we have become members of a seniors’ club. Long term field work in these two communities are the subject of an article we have co-authored for an edited volume on Galician Studies which is currently under review at Routledge Press.

The Southern Highlands Research Center...looking at the roots of UNCA's Special Collections

Thursday, March 2

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Gene Hyde, Head of Special Collections

"The Southern Highlands Research Center...looking at the roots of UNCA's Special Collections"

UNCA's Special Collections is celebrating it’s 40th Anniversary this year!  Special Collections was founded in 1977 as the Southern Highlands Research Center with the goal of collecting documents, photographs, and other materials about Asheville and Western North Carolina. We’ll discuss the early history of the SHRC and the corresponding early development of the Appalachian Studies Association during the late 1970s.

Healthy Aging NC: Creating a road map for the journey whether you’re 21, 41, or 81

Thursday, March 9

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Jeanne Dairaghi and Ayden Jones, NC Center for Health and Wellness

Come join us on March 9 to learn about the work of the Healthy Aging NC initiative of the NC Center for Health and Wellness (NCCHW) at UNC Asheville.  http://healthyagingnc.com/  Jeanne Dairaghi and Ayden Jones will explore facts and statistics about aging in North Carolina, with a focus on how aging intersects with the risk for falls and chronic disease.  But aging is more than fall risk and chronic disease! Come learn about healthy aging research, specific techniques that you can incorporate into your life, resources to preserve quality of life, and ways that you can incorporate healthy aging into your field of study.

Urban Renewal - [De]constructing Asheville

Thursday, March 23

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Patrick Bahls, Department of Mathematics

Jessica Pisano, Department of English

Urban renewal is a euphemistic term often used to describe renovation of cities through demolition of urban areas deemed undesirable and subsequent replacement with more modern features. This process may result in a dramatic and often negative reshaping of a city’s character and communities. Official urban renewal efforts and other transformative forces have had a profound impact on our own city and on many of our students’ hometowns. In Fall 2017, a number of incoming first-year students will enroll in both of our courses: Jessica’s LANG 120 “[De]constructing Asheville” and Patrick’s LA 178 “Urban Renewal in Asheville and Elsewhere.” In our Brown Bag we will talk about our ongoing work in designing this pair of “linked” courses that together will examine the role of urban renewal and similar city-shaping forces on Asheville and other communities. What opportunities do these linked courses afford our students? What challenges do they put in their way? And how can those challenges be fruitfully overcome?

“I was born in jail, I’m still in jail:” Black Youth Protest in Asheville, 1969.

Thursday, March 30

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Sarah Judson, Department of History

“I was born in jail, I’m still in jail:” Black Youth Protest in Asheville, 1969.

On September 29th, 1969, a confrontation took place at Asheville High School between some black students, the Asheville police, and high school officials. Over the course of several days, the disturbance spread around the city as black youth and community organizers expressed their frustrations and anger at the lack of social change in Asheville. By 1969, the black freedom struggle among youth in North Carolina shifted from the college level to high school. Community based education programs became sites for student militancy as black youth took classes in politics and economics. As protests swirled around Asheville in the fall of 1969, white supremacists responded by threatening families of active youth. Tensions escalated when two black youths were arrested for breaking the curfew and for having weapons.  With the arrests, the riot became a larger protest against the unconstitutional use of curfews and state force. With the events of 1969, students at Asheville High School joined a statewide network of activist youth as they took on school officials, city government, and ultimately the Governor of North Carolina.

Electric Vehicles: Driving Progress in the Post-Truth Era

Thursday, April 13

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Dave Erb, Mechatronics Engineering Program

The public discourse surrounding electric and hybrid electric vehicles is rife with mis- and disinformation.  Even supposedly credible, mainstream media outlets parrot baseless nonsense, with little or no effort to discern its truth or falsity.  Please join us when Dave Erb of the UNC Asheville Mechatronics Engineering Program will attempt to set at least part of the record straight.

Building Bridges - Implementing an Inclusive Pedagogical Approach

Thursday, April 20

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Regine Criser, Department of Modern Languages and Literature

This talk provides on overview over the recent curricular revisions in the curriculum of the German program and situates them within the framework of the inclusive pedagogical approach. Reflecting the central tenets of this approach, I will discuss the challenges and successes in implementing the new curriculum as well as the impacts on students and instructors. Finally, I will show how UNCA's liberal arts mission and the inclusive pedagogical approach intersect and point to implementation possibilities across campus.

Practice as Research: CCBdance Project, Resistance and Methods of Inquiry In The Field of Dance

Thursday, April 27

12 - 1 PM

Ramsey Library Special Collections 

Celia Bambara, Dance

My work addresses the complex set of intersections between artistic practice and theoretical inquiry by posing both practical responses through choreography and improvisation, community organization of events and written analyses of process as methods of studying contemporary and African diasporic dance. My work is hybrid in nature and is practiced and researched on both bodily and written levels by information culled from artistic practice and the making of dance. The following presentation will outline the areas in which I work in the field of dance, ways that I think about artistic practice and how artistic practice is the base of my work and a site of inquiry for my “written” work, community organization and presentation.  This presentation will analyze current practices in the field of global  professional dance presentation and creation as modes of inquiry and resistance in relation to my 11 year old award winning postmodern dance company.