Throughout the year, noteworthy speakers flock to WashU to appear in our many memorial and distinguished lecture series, addressing topics across Arts & Sciences. These lectures allow us to broaden the conversation at the University by interjecting new ideas and research into our halls and classrooms. However, it can sometimes be hard to keep them all straight! Below is an overview of some of our memorial lecture series taking place this fall.
The Weissman Lecture Series
This chemistry department hosted lecture honors Professor Samuel I. Weissman, who was a Washington University faculty member from 1946 until his death in 2007. In his time at WashU, he researched a number of areas including optical spectroscopy, which became the new field of magnetic resonance. In this area, he was a renowned pioneer and world-class expert. His groundbreaking studies were initially carried out using home-built spectrometers. A scientist to the core, Weissman did creative research until virtually his last days at the age of 95.
Past Speakers: Ann McDermott, 2017; Michael Turner, 2016; W.E. Moerner, 2015
James E. McLeod Memorial Lecture on Higher Education
Founded by the Center for the Humanities in honor of the esteemed vice chancellor of students who passed away in 2011, the series focuses on the role of the liberal arts in higher education, a subject especially meaningful to Dean McLeod. Speakers include academics and journalists who have written about the liberal arts and higher education, both positively and critically, as well as noted people who talk about how the liberal arts affected their lives and their career choices.
Past Speakers: Sarah Ahmed, 2017; Christopher Newfield, 2016; Rebecca Ginsburg, 2015
Robert Morrell Memorial Lecture in Asian Religions
The department of East Asian Languages and Cultures and the Religious Studies program announce the second annual Robert Morrell Memorial Lecture in Asian Religions. Named after the late Professor Emeritus Robert E. Morrell, this annual series commemorates his life work by bringing distinguished scholars of Asian religions to campus. Dr. Robert Morrell taught Japanese literature and Buddhism, and was the first to teach courses on Buddhism at Washington University.
Past Speakers: Barbara R. Ambros, 2017
Holocaust Memorial Lecture
The Holocaust Memorial Lecture is an annual event that is administered by the University’s Assembly Series since its founding in 1989. Held on or near November 9, the anniversary of the Kristallnacht pogroms in Nazi Germany, the lecture aims not only to commemorate the Holocaust, but also to address its broader implications for other instances of systematic persecution, mass murder, and genocide.
Past Speakers: Crystal Feimster, 2017; Doris Bergen, 2016; Jay Winter, 2015
Robert M. Walker Distinguished Lecture Series
The McDonnell Center for the Space Sciences sponsors the lecture series in memory of Robert M. Walker, the center’s inaugural director from 1975-1999. Walker was a pioneering physicist who played a decisive role in shaping research in the space sciences, not only at the university but also worldwide.
Past Speakers: George Philander, 2017; Gabriela Gonzalez, 2016; Edward C. Stone, 2015
Nelson I. Wu Memorial Lecture on Asian Art and Culture
Nelson Wu was an internationally known scholar and advocate of Asian art and architecture who taught at WashU for nearly 20 years. He is also known by his pen name, Lu Chiao, for his magical short stories and fiction. Co-sponsored by East Asian languages and cultures and the Saint Louis Art Museum, this series offers a talk each fall by an internationally renowned specialist in the field, as well as related events and activities at both the museum and the University. All events are free and open to the public.
Past Speakers: Rebecca Brown, 2017; Gennifer Weisenfeld, 2016; Alfreda Murck, 2015; Matthew McKelway, 2014