Jumping Into Spring

By Rachel Revelle

westduke4-31-300x223Duke students have been enjoying Spring Break this week, leaving the campus and our offices rather quiet, but not idle. This is a time to regroup for the rest of the semester. Looking at my calendar now I see that in six weeks, classes will be finished! Until then, the Kenan Institute will keep you engaged and reflecting on ethical issues of all sorts.

Our website’s events page has a running list of opportunities, and you could take your pick of topic! I’ll give a quick tour of next week alone. We’ll start with one of our Love and Justice Film Series showings—Brother Number One—on Monday night. During the day Wednesday we are co-hosting a workshop about the ethics and practicalities of using DNA for identifying human trafficking victims, then Wednesday evening we’ll host Will Kymlicka and Sue Donaldson to talk about their book Zoopolis, which gives a political theory of animal rights.  Kymlicka will also convene a lunch seminar on Thursday about his work with the Multiculturalism Policy Index. We’ll round out the week with a conference in honor of James Nickel, a leading scholar in human rights law and theory, jurisprudence, and political philosophy.

So there is a week in the life of the institute!  This particular set of programming is coming out of the Duke Human Rights Center at KIE.  Our other program areas will also be staying busy and hosting public events.  And of course all students are now on a mad dash until year’s end. The DukeImmerse crew gets back this weekend and will start compiling and evaluating the research they have collected in Nepal and Egypt. Ethics Certificate Program seniors are working hard on research papers for the capstone course with Professor Walter Sinnott-Armstrong. Many students involved with Team Kenan are preparing for the fourth annual What Is Good Art? Competition, which is always a highlight of the spring.  The exhibition will premiere on April 10 in the West Duke Building.

It is truly invigorating to be around a place where so many topics are being explored. Especially in the heavily scheduled end of spring, I think there is a balancing act of engagement and reflection. Taking in the programs of interest to you, and figuring out what may be interrelated webs of meaning or significance. I know some of Kenan’s events and programs that I found myself drawn to as a student have helped shape what I am now interested in personally and professionally. I hope you’ll explore with us as we head into spring.