Whatever happened to civil public discourse?

Politicians, pundits and scholars will explore that question in a two-day symposium next week. “Conflict and Civility in Political Discourse: Where Is the Line?” opens at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 9, at the downtown Sheraton Hotel.

The symposium will explore the current state of political discourse with panels on history, social media, political changes and traditional reporting. Keynote speaker will be James Leach, Chair of the National Endowment for the Humanities and former congressman. All events are free and open to the public.

Prof. Gerald Wetlaufer will be among panelists discussing rhetorical aspects of discourse on Wednesday afternoon. On Thursday, Nov. 10, Prof. Randall Bezanson and former visiting Prof. David Orentlicher will be part of a morning panel discussing the impact of Citizens United and campaign finance rules on public discourse.

For an introduction to the topic, the UI news service fyi interviewed Peter Damiano, director of the Public Policy Center about the symposium and the state of public discourse. Read the article here.

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