Reminder: Upcoming events

March 17, 2008

Voices of Reason: Alan Wolfe, Michael Kazin, & Susan Jacoby on "1968 and 2008: Years of Rage, Reason, and Change": March 19

The Voices of Reason lecture series continues on Wednesday, March 19.  1968 was a pivotal year in American history and 2008 is shaping up, in a very different way, as a year with the potential for enormous political change. CFI-NYC program director Susan Jacoby, author of the NY Times bestseller The Age of American Unreason , will be joined by the distinguished scholars and cultural critics Alan Wolfe and Michael Kazin for a panel discussion on the impact of the dramatic and painful events of 1968 on American politics over the next four decades and on the current presidential campaign.

Wolfe, director of the Boisi Center for Religion and Public Life at Boston College; author of Does American Democracy Still Work? ; and a frequent contributor on cultural and political topics to magazines such as The New Republic and The Atlantic , will discuss the influence of 1968 on the rise of conservatism during the past 40 years. Kazin, professor of history at Georgetown University and co-author, with Maurice Isserman, of America Divided: The Civil War of the Sixties , will talk about how the left both won and lost the culture wars of that era. Kazin is the author, most recently, of A Godly Hero: The Life of Willian Jennings Bryan .

Wolfe's and Isserman's talks will be followed by what should be a provocative panel discussion moderated by Jacoby and a freewheeling question-and-answer session with the audience. The speeches will be brief, and we'll have more time than usual for audience questions and comments. Because 1968 has a special meaning for everyone who remembers the traumatic events of that year-and young people often ask why those of us who lived through those historic times are still "hung up" on the past-we expect some verbal fireworks.

Co-sponsored by the Gotham Center for New York City History of the City University of New York.

Wednesday, March 19th, 6:30 pm
General Society of Mechanics & Tradesmen,
20 W. 44th St.,between 5th & 6th Aves.

Advanced registration is recommended, but not required for this event. Admission is $10 (free for Friends of the Center). You may purchase in advance by PayPal Online, by credit card (call Tasha Williams, 212-504-2945 ext. 1), or by check (made payable to the Center for Inquiry-New York City; mail to 80 Broad St, 5th Fl., New York, NY 10004). Alternatively, you may pay in person by cash, check, or credit card.

Book Club, Thurs., Mar. 20: Susan Jacoby on The Age of American Unreason

Susan Jacoby will join the CFI/SHSNY Book Club in person to discuss her latest book, the NY Times bestseller The Age of American Unreason .  7:00pm, Thursday, March 20 at the SLC Center, 327 Seventh Avenue (at 30th St.) - 16th floor.

The CFI/SHSNY Book Club is open to all ... and free!

New York City Launch of Austin Dacey's The Secular Conscience

The Center for Inquiry's representative to the United Nations Austin Dacey releases a new book in March 2008 entitled The Secular Conscience: Why Belief Belongs in Public Life. Please join the author at one or more of the following appearances.

Tuesday March 18, 8 pm
Book launch party
163 Allen St, between Stanton & Rivington
(F,V to 2nd Ave, exit at 1st Ave)

Monday, March 24, 7 pm
Bookreading and signing
The Half King Restaurant & Bar
505 West 23rd Street @ 10th Ave

Tuesday, March 25, 8 pm
Bookreading and signing
Columbia University
304 Hamilton Hall
116th St. @ Amsterdam Ave

To learn more about The Secular Conscience , visit .

"Perplexed Parents Circle": Sunday, April 13

Join the Center for Inquiry and Brooklyn author and parent Nica Lalli for a new discussion group in Park Slope, Brooklyn: The Perplexed Parents Circle: Families in a Multifaith World .   Perplexed Parents is for parents who would like to explore how to raise children outside of religious institutions. Many parents are not sure what they believe, may have ties to different religions, and struggle with the questions about what to do with their children and religion. This group will address issues such as:

  • Dealing with grandparents and the expectations of extended families
  • Giving children confidence when "everyone" else belongs to something religious and they do not
  • How to celebrate religious holidays
  • How to answer that tough question: What ARE we?

Perplexed Parents will meet on the following dates from Noon to 2:00 p.m.:

  • Sunday, April 13
  • Sunday, May 18
  • Sunday, June 22

All meetings will occur at the Brooklyn Arts Exchange (BAX), 421 5th Avenue (at 8th Street). Meetings will be hosted by Nica Lalli, who has a ten year old and a thirteen year old. Nica is a local PTA parent, author of a memoir ( Nothing Something to Believe In ) and calls herself a Pink Atheist, a more tolerant and open non-believer. Nica is working on her second book, What do We Believe In? , which will be about parenting without religion in America today.

Free and open to the public. Child care, light refreshments will be provided.

For more information call (718) 768-2960, or email nica.lalli [at] verizon [dot] net.

Read Nica Lalli's op-ed in USA Today about secular parenting.

Save the Date: Paul Kurtz at the NY Academy of Sciences Lyceum Society, April 17

The philosopher Paul Kurtz, CFI's founder and chairman, will speak at the Lyceum Society at the New York Academy of Sciences on April 17.  Brown bag lunch starts at 11:30am; Dr. Kurtz's presentation, Can Science Help Us Make Wise Moral Judgments , will run from 1:00 to 3:00pm.  The Lyceum Society is comprised of the AAAS's retired and semi-retired members, but all are welcome.

Thursday, April 17, 11:30am - 3:00pm
New York Academy of Sciences
7 World Trade Center
250 Greenwich Street, 40th Floor
Sponsored by the New York Academy of Sciences

RSVP Required.   Free for Academy members; $20 for non-members; $10 for student non-members.  Click here to register.

Save the Date: "Secular Ethics Under Siege": Paul Kurtz, R. Joseph Hoffman, & Austin Dacey: April 19

To re-launch its New Jersey community, the Center for Inquiry will hold a one-day conference in Totowa, New Jersey on Saturday, April 19, on Secular Ethics Under Siege.   Speakers and topics include:

  • Paul Kurtz: Ethics for the Future
  • R. Joseph Hoffman: Whatever Happened to God?
  • Austin Dacey: Who Holds the Monopoly on Morality?

Saturday, April 19, 11:00am - 4:00pm
Holiday Inn of Totowa
#1 Route 46 Westbound, Totowa, NJ
Directions: visit or click here .

REGISTRATION REQUIRED.  $39 admission includes lunch.  To register call Tasha Williams at (212) 504-2935, or e-mail twilliams [at] centerforinquiry [dot] net.  More information, including online registration, will appear later on our website, .