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Trovato Lecture to Explore Erosion of Public Discourse in America

February 16, 2017

This year, the annual Joseph A. Trovato Lecture will take a departure from its regular format to feature three faculty members from St. John Fisher College who will explore the erosion of public discourse in America. The lecture, sponsored by the Ethics Minor program, is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 23, in Basil Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.

Drs. Tim Madigan, Linda MacCammon, and Rob Ruehl

Drs. Tim Madigan, Linda MacCammon, and Rob Ruehl will discuss some of the major obstacles to genuine dialogue and consider possible solutions.

Organizers of the lecture said the topic springs from the growing concern about the precipitous decline in the level of public discourse in the United States.

“Many attribute this decline to the coarsening of our language, the media ‘echo chamber’ that narrows our perspectives, and the inability or refusal of many to use reason and logic when confronted by verifiable and observable facts,” said MacCammon. “The need for critical, reasoned, and respectful debate has never been greater.”

The program will also introduce initiatives at Fisher that will prepare students for the kinds of difficult conversations they’ll undoubtedly encounter in their personal and professional lives, MacCammon said. 

A question and answer session will follow the discussion.