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Scholar Mary Lefkowitz to speak about 'Black Athena' controversy at Connecticut College Dec. 14

NEW LONDON, Conn. - Professor Mary Lefkowitz, a Classics scholar best known for her role in the 'Black Athena' controversy, will speak at Connecticut College Dec. 14. In her talk, "'Black Athena,' Interdisciplinarity, Multiculturalism and the Modern University," Lefkowitz will discuss her decision to challenge theories that ancient Greek democracy, philosophy and science - and even perhaps the ancient Greeks themselves - were African in origin. She will also address the ways in which matters of race and ethnicity are discussed on contemporary college campuses.

Lefkowitz, Professor of Classics Emerita at Wellesley College, is the author of "Not Out Of Africa: How 'Afrocentrism' Became An Excuse To Teach Myth As History," and co-editor of "Black Athena Revisited," a collection of scholarly essays refuting the claims made by Martin Bernal in his book, "Black Athena: The Afroasiatic Roots of Classical Civilization." In 2006, she was awarded the National Humanities Medal.

Lefkowitz will speak at 4:30 p.m. in the Blaustein Humanities Center Room 210. This event, sponsored by the Connecticut College Departments of Classics, Anthropology and History, the Center for the Comparative Study of Race and Ethnicity and the Office of the Dean of the College Community, is free and open to the public.

About Connecticut College Situated on the coast of southern New England, Connecticut College is a highly selective private liberal arts college with 1900 students from all across the country and throughout the world. On the college´s 750-acre arboretum campus overlooking Long Island Sound, students and faculty create a vibrant social, cultural and intellectual community enriched by diverse perspectives. The college, founded in 1911, is known for its unique combination of interdisciplinary studies, international programs, funded internships, student-faculty research and service learning.

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December 9, 2009