Famous activist, educator gives talk on democracy, education at WMU

contact: Mark Schwerin
| WMU News

KALAMAZOO—A man known for his radical activism against the Vietnam War and his current work on education reform, curriculum development and instruction visits the Western Michigan University campus this month to speak on democracy and education.

Dr. William Ayers, co-founder of the Weather Underground in 1969 and formerly Distinguished Professor of Education and Senior University Scholar at the University of Illinois at Chicago, will speak at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 19, in the Fetzer Center's Kirsch Auditorium. His presentation, free and open to the public, is titled "Teaching Free People: What Democracy Demands in its Schools." He also will meet with faculty and students while on campus.

William Ayers

Ayers has written extensively about social justice and democracy, education and the cultural contexts of schooling and teaching as an essentially intellectual, ethical and political enterprise. He also has written about his days as a dissident. His books include "A Kind and Just Parent," "Teaching toward Freedom," "Fugitive Days: A Memoir," "On the Side of the Child," "Teaching the Personal and the Political," "To Teach: The Journey, in Comics," "Teaching Toward Democracy," "Race Course: Against White Supremacy" and "Public Enemy: Confessions of an American Dissident."

Ayers' appearance is co-sponsored by the College of Education and Human Development; the departments of Educational Leadership, Research and Technology; Teaching, Learning and Educational Studies; English; and Sociology; and the Lewis Walker Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnic Relations.

For more information, contact Dr. Joseph Kretovics, WMU professor of educational leadership, research and technology, at (269) 387-6867 or joseph.kretovics@wmich.edu.