Emeritus Faculty Lectures: Eloquence and Eminence

Celebrating 21 years of award-winning lectures by retired University of Wisconsin faculty known for their teaching excellence and scholarship.

The 2014-2015 season is proudly sponsored by UW-Madison Continuing Studies, the Institute on Aging, and the Anonymous Committee. This lecture series is free and open to the public, with no registration required. The lectures are held Sunday afternoons 2-3pm in the Pyle Center and are followed by refreshments.

At a glance

What: Award-winning series of lectures by retired University of Wisconsin faculty known for their teaching excellence

When: Sundays 2-3pm (see below for schedule)

Cost: Free, open to the public, no registration required

Where: The Pyle Center, 702 Langdon St, Madison, WI (map)

Questions? Contact Emily Auerbach at eauerbach@dsc.wisc.edu or call 608-262-3733

Never miss a lecture

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Grant funding makes it possible to offer special assistance to hearing impaired and physically disabled adults wishing to attend the series. To request special accommodations, please contact Professor Auerbach at least 2 weeks prior to the lecture date.

View the 2014-2015 schedule below. 2015-2016 schedule to be announced soon!

Sept 28, 2014

‘Everyone is Listening for Something’: Nature Writing Set to Music

This lecture will focus on 4 works inspired by the nature poetry and wilderness writings of Aldo Leopold, Sigurd F. Olson, August Derleth, and Henry David Thoreau. Discussions will include the setting of word rhythms, the intonations of language, the use of sounds and tone colors to enhance suggested images, programming specific sounds of the wild, and celebrating the powers of the natural world through musical creativity.

Douglas Hill served as professor of music-horn at UW-Madison from 1974-2011. He was named an Emily Mead Baldwin-Bascom Professor in the Creative Arts and was the recipient of the 2009 Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award. Along with performing and recording extensively, he is recognized as one of only 20 international horn performers to be included in the book 20th Century Brass Soloists. Hill has appeared as a soloist and clinician throughout the United States, Germany, France, and China in numerous international, national, and regional brass and horn workshops and symposia.

Oct 19, 2014

The Reevaluation of Modern Giant T. S. Eliot

T.S.Eliot stands as a literary giant, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1948 for his revolutionary poetry, prose, and drama. This lecture will explore why American-born Eliot became a British citizen and how works like The Waste Land and The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock speak to us today.

Cyrena Pondrom is professor emerita of English and women’s studies at UW-Madison. Her research specializations are Anglo-American modernist poetry and the avant-garde. She has written on Eliot, Stein, H.D., Pound, Moore, Barnes, cummings, and the literary history of modernist poetry.

March 22, 2015

How Did Social Insurance Become a Four-Letter Word?

This lecture examines the political rhetoric that has undermined support for the nation's social insurance programs, ranging from unemployment insurance to universal health care. One result is a growing belief by those who benefit from such programs that they have earned their coverage while others have not—what we might label a "flawed moral perception." I call it "flawed" because it so often is based on a failure to understand both U.S. tax policy (which has subsidized benefits for some but not others) and the redistributive effects of any kind of insurance. But does it also raise questions about the kind of country we still aspire to? In other words, have fear and mistrust in government led to what the New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof recently labeled an "empathy gap?"

Carin Clauss is a Professor of Law at the UW Law School, where she holds the Nathan P. Feinsinger Chair in Labor Law. Her areas of specialization are labor and employment law, administrative law and civil procedure.

As U.S. Solicitor of Labor from 1977 to 1981, Professsor Clauss was responsible for enforcing the nation's labor laws. She writes extensively on employment law issues, engages in a pro bono law practice specializing in sex discrimination cases, and is a frequent speaker to business, labor and legal groups.

April 26, 2015

Emerging Diseases of the 21st Century

Whether it’s the Ebola virus, an outbreak of measles, or vaccine-resistant strains of influenza, infectious diseases show up in the news almost daily. Which infectious diseases pose the greatest risk, and what can we do about them?

Dr. Dennis Maki is a faculty member with the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. His interests over the past 3 decades have included the study and prevention of nosocomial infections, the clinical application of novel agents for the treatment of septic shock, and the epidemiology and prevention of infections caused by antimicrobial resistant pathogens. He has been named one of the Best Doctors in America several times.


Contact Emily Auerbach at eauerbach@dcs.wisc.edu or call 608-262-3733.