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Swarthmore College Marks 10th Anniversary of 9/11 with Emphasis on Nonviolence

Swarthmore Marks 10th Anniversary of
9/11 with Emphasis on Nonviolence

by Stacey Kutish

Swarthmore will mark the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001, with a series of events that will emphasize nonviolent responses to terrorism and other threats. All events are free and members of the public are encouraged to attend.

Sun., Sept. 11: Memorial Service

A service of memorial and reflection will be held at the Swarthmore Friends Meeting House at 4:30 p.m. President Rebecca Chopp will offer opening remarks; additional speakers include Associate Professor of Sociology Lee Smithey and Assistant Professor of Statistics Lynne Steuerle Schofield '99, whose mother died in the attacks. Students will offer prayers from a variety of faith traditions and a period of reflection and silence will be honored in the Quaker tradition. Participants will have the opportunity to decorate prayer flags which will be hung in Parrish Hall throughout the following week.

Mon., Sept. 12: Teach-In on Nonviolent Responses to Terrorism

A teach-in, facilitated by President Chopp, will be held at 4:30 p.m. in Science Center 101. Panel members Schofield, Smithey, and Visiting Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies George Lakey will reflect on the aftermath of 9/11 and the role of government on the global stage, as well as the personal, practical activism of individual citizens.

Tues., Sept. 13: Reporting 9/11 Panel Discussion

Jim MacMillan, journalist-in-residence at War News Radio, will moderate a discussion about media coverage of the Sept. 11 events and their lasting impact on the nation in Science Center 199 at 7:30 p.m. Participants include Jennifer Lin and Alfred Lubrano of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Elisabeth Perez-Luna of WHYY News.

Launch of Global Nonviolent Action Database

An online resource that provides free access to information about hundreds of cases of nonviolent action will debut on Sat., Sept. 10. The Global Nonviolent Action Database, a vast, virtual library, contains information about more than 500 nonviolent campaigns, spanning six continents, multiple historical periods, and addressing economic, environmental, racial, anti-colonial, and sexual injustice issues.

Developed by Lakey and dozens of Swarthmore students, this initiative was supported by the College's Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility. "Through working on this project and pushing each other to critically examine our work and its possibilities and limitations, we have grown together as researchers and activists for positive social change," says Aden Tedla '12, a history major and peace and conflict studies minor from Riverside, Calif. "By presenting this history and making it more accessible, the database can remind all of us that we have the capacity to confront power and oppression using alternative, creative, and strategic means."