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Robert I. Strozier Faculty Lecture Series

2021-2022 Schedule

Dr. Annie Mendenhall
College of Arts and Humanities

From Defiance to Deficit: How College Desegregation Influenced Educational Policy

Radio, WRUU, or 107.5

In 1969, investigators from the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare visited Armstrong State College to report on the state of its desegregation activities. For two decades afterward, Armstrong, nearby Savannah State College, and the entire University System of Georgia were part of a national effort to enforce postsecondary desegregation across the South amidst the tumultuous political and legal shifts on the issue of desegregation. This presentation will describe the history of postsecondary desegregation enforcement, focusing on how desegregation plans in Georgia and other states influenced educational policies on remediation, retention, and educational access.

Dr. Maureen Stobb and Dr. Jamie Scalera Elliott
College of Behavioral and Social Sciences

A Crisis of Citizenship: What is the Court’s Role in Solving Europe’s Socio-Political Dilemma?

Radio, WRUU, or 107.5,
Lecture: Wednesday, October 13, 2021 from 9 – 10 p.m.
Discussion: Friday, October 15, 2021 from 2 – 3 p.m.

Citizenship is a highly contentious issue across the globe: who “belongs”, what rights do citizens vs non-citizens possess, and what obligations are required of citizens. This is particularly true in the European Union, where integration prompted a reconceptualization of citizenship that rests in the tension between the national and the supranational. We argue that, when the political arena fails to offer answers to these questions, the courts have stepped in. We investigate the strategies employed by the EU courts to navigate the complex area of citizenship.

Dr. José de Arimatéia da Cruz
College of Behavioral and Social Sciences

Brazil Under President Jair Bolsonaro: How Bad Politics Can Undermine Good Public Health

Fine Arts Auditorium (162),
Friday, November 5, 2021 at Noon

Abstract: It is often said that, “what happens in Vegas, stay in Vegas.” That may be the case of Vegas but certainly not the case of Brazil during the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has impacted Brazil’s population at a record number. Brazil has been hit hardest in the realm of Latin America by the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, Brazil has become a global epicenter for the COVID-19 pandemic rate of infection. The total number of deaths resulting from COVID-19 in Brazil continues to rise on a daily basis. Brazil’s COVID-19 infection rate is a result of several factors such as a poorly funded public health system, an overreliance on the public health system thus placing the system under immense strain, and poor overall public health infrastructure. However, the most important reason for Brazil’s current situation lies squarely on the Brazilian government’s inability to govern and follow the proper protocols established by the World Health Organization (WHO). Brazil’s infection rate is also a result of Brazil’s President Bolsonaro’s style of leadership which has been from the beginning of the pandemic quite adversarial, anti-science based approach to combat COVID-19, anti-intellectualism.

Dr. Holly Cowart
College of Arts and Humanities

Police and Protestors: How News Media Frame the Struggle for Social Justice

Ogeechee Theatre,
Friday, February 4, 2022 at Noon

News media images shape our understanding of protest movements and the struggles they represent. This has been particularly true for the Black Lives Matter movement. An examination of how the news media portrayed protestors following the death of Michael Brown shows an emphasis on police subduing protestors. By 2020, this frame appeared less frequently. Many of the images published following the death of George Floyd highlight people exercising their civil liberties and deemphasize the police presence. Dr. Cowart explores how protest movements are framed by media and the impact those frames have on our perception of social justice.

Dr. Aniruddha Mitra
Allen E. Paulson College of Engineering and Computing

A Study on Penetration of Ultrafine Particles through Commercially Available Masks at Manufacturing Sites

Ogeechee Theatre,
Friday, March 3, 2022 at Noon

Workers at the manufacturing sites are always under respiratory health hazard, due to the high concentration of airborne particles. The protection level of N95 commercially available masks are primarily tested against microlevel particles. However, there has been very limited work with submicron ultrafine particles, which penetrates deeper into the human respiratory system. In this presentation, the effectiveness of some of these masks against ultrafine particles at various commercial manufacturing sites will be discussed. The results indicate that under most of the conditions the performances of the masks were satisfactory only allowing 6% or lower percentage of particles penetrate through it.  

Dr. Elizabeth Rahilly
College of Behavioral and Social Sciences

Raising Kids in a (Non)Binary World

Ogeechee Theatre,
Friday, April 1, 2022 at Noon

Gender is at the center of important cultural shifts right now. This includes growing awareness of transgender persons, as well as nonbinary gender possibilities. Parents prove key agents in this gender revolution, challenging traditional gender norms at their roots. In this talk, Dr. Elizabeth Rahilly will discuss her new book on parents who support transgender kids, Trans-Affirmative Parenting (NYU Press)as well as her current research on “gender-open parenting”: these parents do not disclose the birth sex of their children, and use they/them pronouns until the child expresses their own identity. In a world with rapidly evolving understandings of gender, Dr. Rahilly illuminates significant new patterns in childhood socialization.


Professor Emeritus and alumni, Robert Strozier, Ph.D., passed away April 28, in Savannah. Strozier is being remembered as a mentor, poet, acclaimed speaker and extraordinary English professor on the Armstrong Campus.

Strozier graduated from Armstrong Junior College in 1949 with a degree in liberal studies. He returned to Armstrong after getting an Applied Baccalaureate, a Master of Arts and a Ph.D. in American literature from other institutions. He taught generations of students for over 40 years and also served as director of public relations.

In 2015, Strozier received the 2015 Eminent Alumni Award, and the annual faculty Robert I. Strozier Lecture Series is named in his honor. Strozier, who was active in civic leadership, was a founding member of the foundation that purchased the Flannery O’Connor Childhood Home and turned it into a significant literary center in downtown Savannah.

Submissions from 2006 – 1982