By Lily M. Hoffman
Lily M. Hoffman is an associate professor and director of the MA program in sociology at the Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership and faculty member at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Her research interests include urban redevelopment and comparative urban policy focusing on the U.S. and post-communist Eastern Europe. Hoffman, who chaired the urban and community section of the American Sociological Association and who is coeditor of Cities and Visitors: Regulating People, Markets and City Space, was invited to present her current work this fall at the 10th Annual Beijing Forum. The forum, entitled “The Harmony of Civilizations and Prosperity for All—Retrospect and Prospect,” brought together scholars, public officials, and experts from more than 40 countries. While in Beijing, Hoffman reflected on some of the many issues facing megacities:
During my week in Beijing, I experienced two relatively smog-less blue-sky days, when minimal numbers of residents wore protective masks and when the air was less acrid than usual. I was there for the 10th Beijing Forum, cosponsored by Peking University, the city of Beijing, and the Korea Foundation, and held at the Diaoyutai State Guest House, where Nixon “met” China during his historic 1972 visit.
One focus of the forum was China’s urbanization, both the profound challenges raised by China’s megacities such as Beijing and Shanghai, whose populations number more than 20 million residents, as well as the government’s national policy of rapid urbanization. China plans to move 250 million people from rural to urban locations by 2025; this means moving about 20 million farmers per year. Many of these locations will be newly constructed towns and cities that require the establishment of an infrastructure of schools, hospitals, roads, and public transportation, as well as jobs for incoming migrants. Continue reading
by Sylviane A. Diouf, Curator of Digital Collections, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (Excerpted with permission from original post on NYPL’s Africa and the African Diaspora blog)
[ED: Nelson Mandela passed away December 5. With his death, a number of in memoriams and reflection pieces have been published across the webisphere, including this piece by Sylviane A. Diouf, Curator of Digital Collections at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. She reflects on seeing Mandela at a town meeting at City College of New York in 1990. Read an excerpt of her piece below and visit the New York Public Library's website to read it in its entirety.]
I learned of Nelson Mandela’s passing while waiting for my delayed flight at Atlanta Airport. I thought how much his painful and extraordinary life had exposed the terrible danger that faced those who fought for the rights, the dignity and the freedom of people of African origin or descent. That despairing reality was made all the more vivid because I was coming back to New York after several days spent with Kathleen Cleaver, immersed in documents and photographs from the Black Power Movement Continue reading
Updated 11/15: View a webcast of the first Human Right forum event here.
By Alessandra Benedicty, assistant professor of literature; director of Masters program in the Study of the Americas at the Division of Interdisciplinary Studies, Center for Worker Education, City College of New York
The “Human Rights: A Yearlong Forum at City College of New York” series is, first and foremost, an invitation, and then, as most invitations are, a gesture. The invitation is to all those who are in our City College community—faculty, students, advisors, staff, alumni, community member, or just a visitor passing through—to partake in this yearlong forum. The gesture is offering a space for all to listen, learn, and exchange within the CUNY system, but also with and alongside specialists and friends of our larger extended community. Continue reading
Memory of Forgotten War was screened at CCNY Nov. 21.
by Katherine Cho, Program Coordinator, Colin Powell School
Last week I had the opportunity to welcome an audience of fifty to a film screening and forum for the documentary Memory of Forgotten War. This compelling documentary focuses on the 60th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice, sharing the deeply personal stories of four Korean War survivors. These narratives include dealing with, for some, recollections of daily bombings, searching for missing family members, and struggling to survive in a newly divided Korea.
With the division at the 38th parallel, residents of either country could no longer communicate with one another, and families that once easily moved between neighboring cities were cut off from each other. In addition to the forced physical separation, the documentary also highlighted the societal pressure of distancing any ties with North Korea relations, family members, and friends. Continue reading
by Gargi Padki, Community Engagement Fellow, Colin Powell School
Project Speak Up Speak Out will release a photo project that has been in development since early October on December 2nd at 12:30pm in the North Academic Center rotunda.
During our “16 Days Against Gender Violence,” we will display photos taken of over a hundred students, faculty, and staff at City College in order to start a dialogue about domestic violence awareness on our campus. Speak Up Speak Out is committed to breaking the silence of domestic violence and addressing violence in our communities as a public health issue. In the spring, we will begin recruiting volunteers to help in our continued efforts to engage the college community to speak out against domestic violence. Continue reading
The Reverend Eugene S. Callender speaking at the City College of New York. Reverend Callender passed away on November 2.
by Vince Boudreau, Director, Colin Powell Center
The Reverend Eugene Callender—or “Rev” as he insisted we call him—served as the very first New York Life leader-in-residence in the early years of CCNY’s Colin Powell Center. He embraced the opportunity of working with our students with incredible joy and energy, and was particularly committed to bringing the lions of the civil rights struggle—people like Derek Bell and Vincent Harding—to campus to meet our students. He was a mentor and a leader to our students, and to many of us who had the chance to work with him. Continue reading
Updated 12/14: View a webcast of Justice Sotomayor’s visit here.
The Honorable Sonia Sotomayor, associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, will visit City College of New York Monday evening to discuss growing up ‘Nuyorican’ in the Bronx. Sotomayor, who endured a difficult childhood dominated by her father’s alcoholism and his subsequent death, will discuss those years and her path of scholarly and professional excellence, which led to her becoming the first Hispanic justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.
Justice Sotomayor’s visit is timed to the new paperback release of her memoir, My Beloved World. In a recent interview with National Public Radio, Justice Sotomayor said she chose to write a “searingly candid” portrait of her life, in part, because “[t]o move people beyond just dreaming to doing, they have to be able to see that you’re just like them, and you still made it.”
by Dee Dee Mozeleski, Director of Development, Colin L. Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership
The driving mission behind the Powell School at the City College of New York is to be a leading center for social research, expertise, learning, and leadership. An important part of this ongoing effort is to disseminate research and public policy information to concerned audiences, particularly those working to redress social, political or economic disparities. So it is with great enthusiasm that we officially announce our new series of public breakfast talks, Conversations with City.
Conversations with City is a dynamic and stimulating addition to event programming at the Powell School. The series serves as an open forum for experts, policymakers, community leaders, and others attempting to meet the major challenges of the nation and the world. Continue reading