Our Future Events

The first event in our new series “Understanding Iran through Film” will take place in September 15, 2017. Our speaker will be Professor Ida Meftahi. The titles of the talk and the film will be announced soon.

IdaMeftahiIda Meftahi

Ida Meftahi currently holds a Visiting Assistant Professorship in contemporary Iranian culture and society at the Roshan Institute for Persian Studies, University of Maryland. She completed her doctoral studies at the University of Toronto’s Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations and was a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for the Arts and Humanities at Pennsylvania State University. Her first book, Gender and Dance in Modern Iran: Biopolitics on Stage was released in Spring 2016 (Routledge Iranian Studies Series). Offering a novel approach to corporeality in twentieth-century Iran, Dr. Meftahi’s historical research intersects with studies of gender, urbanism, performance, cinema, and political economy of public entertainment. In addition to teaching interdisciplinary courses on Modern Iran, she is the director of the Lalehzar Digital Project, a component of the Roshan Initiative for Digital Humanities, as well as faculty advisor for Roshangar: Roshan Undergraduate Journal for Persian Studies.



Friday, October 6, 2017 @ 6:30 pm
“The Current State of Refugees and Forced Displacement in the World”
WWAC and Centre Congregational Church will jointly sponsor a talk by
Mr. Lloyd Dakin, UN High Commission of Refugees (Ret.)
Venue: Center Congregational Church, 193 Main St., Brattleboro
The talk will be preceded by a spaghetti supper sponsored as a fundraiser by a group in the church
Donations to Carry Me Home will be accepted at the door. They are in need of funds to cover shipping costs.

lloyd_dakinMr. Dakin’s experience with refugees started in the mid 1970’s and went up to 2009 when he retired from UNHCR. He worked in Thailand, Pakistan, and Tanzania, as well as in UNHCR headquarters in Geneva, where he covered the Horn of Africa and the five Central Asian Republics, among other places. He was also UNHCR Representative in Armenia and Central Europe. based in Budapest and responsible for Slovenia, Hungry, Slovakia, Poland, Romania and Bulgaria. Finally, he was acting Director of the Division for External Relations, the largest division in UNHCR, in Geneva.

While he could speak about these experiences, Mr. Dakin prefers to focus on the current state of refugees and forced displacement in the world. From his extensive experience, he has learned that not all refugee situations are the same, but ultimately their resolutions are very similar. Refugees either return home, stay in the country they fled to, or seek resettlement in another country. He will give us his perspective on on how these processes are progressing globally and locally at this moment in time.

And, Coming in November:
One Belt, One Road:   Why Is China Rebuilding The Silk Road and Reclaiming the “Mandate of Heaven”?

It is no secret that the current US administration’s withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and its real and virtual wall-building approach to global affairs, is affecting the US’s position as a geo-political global leader. While the USA is building walls, the People’s Republic of China is building roads, in fact, three Silk Roads: The Overland Silk Road, The Maritime Silk Road, and the virtual Cyber Silk Road.

Image result for One Belt, One Road, images

Jim FreedmanJim Freedman

Jim Freedman, a global leadership consultant, with extensive business experience in Korea, China, and the Philippines, will discuss the global strategy undertaken by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to build and finance The Silk Roads to secure its leadership in the Asia-Pacific region, and to increase its influence on Western Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the Indian sub-continent. The leadership of the Chinese Communist Party is working diligently to use the One Belt, One Road Project to reclaim the historical Chinese “Mandate of Heaven” as a means of legitimizing its control of the Chinese government and the Chinese people. Jim will discuss the One Belt, One Road’s impact on international trade and geo-political affairs if the current US administration continues on its “Fortress America” insular political strategy.
Jim Freedman has significant experience in the Asia-Pacific Region. He has recently been a guest lecturer on the topic of leading effectively in multi-cultural organizations at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China and at both Nanjing University, and Nanjing Normal University in Nanjing, China. For the last 13 years, Jim Freedman was responsible for global leadership and executive development for a global healthcare company with an emphasis on the Asia-Pacific region. In addition, as a recipient of the Van Fleet Award for his service to the Republic of Korea, he brings a broad set of international experiences to his work and understanding of business affairs in Asia.

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