2021-2022 Season



In 2021-2022, people from around the world tuned in to our online events for insights into our changing society, ideas from acclaimed authors, and discoveries by our faculty, students, and guests. Below are some highlights from an inspiring year. Events are also available for viewing, or reviewing, on our YOUTUBE CHANNEL.


Occupy Wall Street Event
On the 10th anniversary Occupy Wall Street, Distinguished Professor Ruth Milkman looked back on the movement’s impact with a panel of activists who participated in Occupy, featuring Nelini Stamp of the Working Families Party; Suresh Naidu of Columbia University; and Cathy O’Neil, author of Weapons of Math Destruction. (September 22)


Survival of the City Event
As city life changed dramatically in the face of the pandemic, economists David Cutler and Edward Glaeser discussed their book Survival of the City with Distinguished Professor Paul Krugman; Michelle Goldberg, New York Times columnist; and J. Phillip Thompson, NYC deputy mayor and Graduate Center alumnus (Political Science, ‘90). (October 6)


In our series on the urgent topic of police reform, Michael Jacobson, executive director of CUNY ISLG, led a panel on ways to achieve community safety, featuring Maureen McGough, chief of staff for the Policing Project at NYU; Rodney Harrison, chief of department for the NYPD; Jennifer Jones Austin, CEO of Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies, and Ashwin Vasan, CEO of Fountain House (now NYC health commissioner). (October 13)


Three Mothers Event
Author Anna Malaika Tubbs discussed her critically acclaimed book The Three Mothers: How the Mothers of Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, and James Baldwin Shaped a Nation with Robyn C. Spencer, professor of history at the CUNY Graduate Center and Lehman College. (October 27)


Cornel West Event
At the virtual conference “Carry It On: The Radical Imagination,” honoring the work and legacy of late Graduate Center professor Stanley Aronowitz, his friend and fellow scholar-activist Cornel West gave the keynote address.
(November 19)


Angela Merkel Event
As the longtime German leader stepped down from power, best-selling author Kati Marton discussed her biography The Chancellor: The Remarkable Odyssey of Angela Merkel. (December 8)


Science Telescope Event
In our City of Science series, Dean of Sciences Joshua Brumberg led a discussion about NASA’s newly launched James Webb Space Telescope with a panel of astrophysicists from CUNY and beyond, featuring Chris Hayward, Saavik Ford, and Jackie Faherty. (March 2)


Maggie Nelson Event
Celebrating the recent book On Freedom by alumna Maggie Nelson (English, ‘04), Distinguished Professor Wayne Koestenbaum, who was her dissertation adviser, joined in conversation with Nelson about her groundbreaking work. (March 10)


Science Drugs Event
In our City of Science series, Nobel Prize winner Michael Brown, whose research on cholesterol led to statins, helped to demystify the drug development process in a conversation with Kevin Gardner, director of the Structural Biology Initiative at the Advanced Science Research Center at the CUNY Graduate Center. (March 30)


Biography Lecture 2022
Annette Gordon-Reed, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family, gave the Annual Leon Levy Biography Lecture, shedding light on new ways of thinking about American history and the process of writing biography. (May 4)


Race & Class Event
At a time of deep divisions in our society, an important discussion, “Building Political Alliances Across Race and Class,”  featured Janelle Wong, professor at the University of Maryland; Farah Stockman, New York Times journalist and author of American Made; Heather McGhee, distinguished lecturer at the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies and author of The Sum of Us; and Dana Kuhnline, campaign manager for ReImagine Appalachia. (May 11)


Dissertation Show Case 2022 Event
At the Fifth Annual Dissertation Showcase, President Robin L. Garrell joined in a Q&A with this year’s brilliant student presenters: Julian Gonzalez de Leon Heiblum, Melissa Horger, George Annor, Pamela Thielman, Sarah Molinari, Johanna Hellgren, Max Osborn, Lynne Stillings, Sohag Chakraborty, Lennay Chapman, and Karen Okigbo. (May 18)


Grace Cho Event
Alumna Grace M. Cho (Sociology, ‘05) shared insights into her memoir Tastes Like War, a National Book Award finalist. Cho, an associate professor of sociology and anthropology at the College of Staten Island, spoke with Patricia Clough, professor emerita of Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies at the CUNY Graduate Center and Queens College. (May 25)