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Alice Dreger to deliver keynote at FIRE’s faculty conference, and presenters announced!

By October 4, 2017

FIRE is very pleased to make two announcements regarding this week’s faculty conference. First, we’re delighted to share with you the faculty who will be presenting their work at this week’s faculty conference in Dallas, Texas, from October 5-7. These professors’ outstanding work was selected from the more than 100 proposals submitted during our open call for submissions earlier this year, and we look forward to discussing their work at our conference:

  • Kathleen Bartzen Culver, University of Wisconsin-Madison

  • David Demers, American Center for Civil Liberties

  • Joshua Duntley, Stockton University

  • David R. Hodge, Arizona State University

  • April Kelly-Woessner, Elizabethtown College

  • Jason M. Shepard, California State University, Fullerton

  • Joseph W. Yockey, University of Iowa College of Law

Secondly, we’re thrilled to announce Alice Dreger as the conference’s closing keynote speaker! An author, noted historian of medicine and science, and tireless advocate for free speech and academic freedom, Dreger’s experience lends an invaluable perspective to our conference. Dreger is the author of “Galileo’s Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science,” which chronicled her experiences as a patients’ rights activist and proponent of intersex awareness, as well as her efforts protecting academic freedom and the pursuit of scientific truth from activist pressures.

FIRE supporters will also know Dreger from her fight for free speech at Northwestern University, which censored a faculty-published bioethics journal she had edited. Northwestern’s intransigence led Dreger to resign in protest from her appointment at the university’s medical school. Dreger writes for such venues as The New York Times, The Atlantic, WIRED, the Los Angeles Times, New Statesman, and Pacific Standard, and her TED talk, “Is Anatomy Destiny?”, has been viewed more than one million times. Much more about her scholarship, writing, and activism can be found at her website. Dreger previously addressed the 2016 FIRE Student Network Summer Conference, and we’re thrilled to bring her back.

FIRE’s 2017 Faculty Conference is presented as part of FIRE’s Speech, Outreach, Advocacy, and Research (SOAR) project, supported by the John Templeton Foundation. FIRE is additionally grateful to the Institute for Humane Studies, which has enthusiastically provided additional funding and logistical support. FIRE also thanks George Yancey and the Christian Studies program at the University of North Texas for its support.

More information on the conference and our presenters can be found at thefire.org/facultyconference2017. We look forward to a great weekend of discussion and debate, and to sharing the highlights of the conference with our supporters.