Revered Social Critic to Present ‘Slouching Towards Utopia’ at UM

March 08, 2018

George Scialabba MISSOULA – An award-winning critic hailed as “one of a handful of public intellectuals who are keeping the critical spirit alive in a time of stupefying complacency,” will present a lecture and seminar at the University of Montana as part of the 2017-18 President’s Lecture Series.

George Scialabba will present the Ezio Cappadocia Memorial Lecture on Politics and History, “Slouching Towards Utopia,” at 8 p.m. Monday, March 12, in the Dennison Theatre. He also will present the seminar “Last Men and Women” from 3 to 4:30 p.m. the same day in Gallagher Business Building Room 123. Both events are free and open to the public.

As a freelance book reviewer and political commentator, Scialabba shares his views on the “moral consensus in plutocratic America” which he argues requires alteration if we want to have a “rational” and “humane” future.

After studying history and literature at Harvard University in the 1960s and earning a master’s degree in intellectual history at Columbia University in 1972, Scialabba pursued writing in his free time while employed as a substitute teacher, social worker and a Harvard University building manager.

Scialabba’s reviews have appeared in Agni, The Boston Globe, Dissent, the Virginia Quarterly Review, The Nation, The American Conservative, Commonweal, The Village Voice, the Washington Post, The American Prospect and many other publications. In 1991, he received the Nona Balakian Excellence in Reviewing Award from the National Book Critics Circle. In 2007 and 2008, he taught in the Bennington College Graduate Writing Seminars.

When he retired from Harvard in 2015, the city of Cambridge, Massachusetts, declared the date “George Scialabba Day.” Speakers including Thomas Frank, Barbara Ehrenreich and Noam Chomsky converged on Harvard Square to pay tribute to him. Since retiring, he has been writing a book column for The Baffler.

The President’s Lecture Series at UM consists of seven talks throughout the academic year on vital topics by distinguished guest speakers. For more information on the series, visit http://umt.edu/president/events/lectures/ or call UM history Professor Richard Drake at 406-243-2981.

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Contact: Richard Drake, UM history professor and President’s Lecture Series organizer, 406-243-2981, richard.drake@umontana.edu.