UW-Washington County focuses on Iran

Lecture Series, Film, Art Display, Book Discussion & Concert Planned
By UW-Washington County

IranUW-Washington County will be focusing on the middle-eastern country of Iran as it kicks off the annual fall community lecture series. Six one-hour lectures are scheduled on Wednesday evenings, September 21 through October 6, beginning at 6:30pm. Each lecture is followed by a question/answer session. Topics for this year’s popular series include Iran’s history, art and culture, underground cinema, nuclear deal, Islamic faith, and OPEC. Additional outreach includes a social planned by the Friends of Matt Zillig, an art display, a book discussion and a concert. With the exception of the concert, all events are free and open to the public. The first lecture is held in the theatre, with all remaining lectures in room 201. An overview of the series and outreach includes:

September 21: Overview of Iran’s History with speaker Dr. Robert Kramer, History Department at St. Norbert’s College, DePere.  According to Dr. Kramer, “This lecture will attempt to give the audience a better sense of who the Iranian people are, with reference to their historical development, in order to highlight some of the complexities involved in America’s relations with Iran (as well as Iran’s relations with the rest of the world).” The first lecture deemed, the “Matt Zillig Memorial Lecture” is held in the theatre and is followed by a social featuring middle eastern food and beverage samples. Both the first lecture and the social is funded by the Friends of Matt Zillig, who was a University of Wisconsin graduate, a world traveler and an active community supporter. After his death in 2008, an endowment was established by his friends and colleagues to sponsor an annual lecture relating to global citizenship at UW-Washington County.

September 28: Iranian Art & Culture with speaker and artist Nina Ghanbarzadeh.

October 5: Iranian Underground Cinema with Hamidrezza Nassiri, Communication Arts Department at UW-Madison.  

October 12: Iranian Nuclear Deal – How is it Faring?  with Dr. Andrew Kydd, Political Science Department at UW-Madison.

October 19: Islam Faith – with speaker Othman M. Atta, Islamic Center of Milwaukee.  

October 26: Iran and OPEC with speaker John Hall, Chairman of Alfa Energy, London.  

Iranian Artwork Display created by artist, Nina Ghanbarzadeh will be on display in the gallery. Born and raised in Tehran, Ghanbarzadeh immigrated to the U.S. in 2001. She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from UW-Milwaukee with a focus in fine art and graphic design. Proficient in mixed media as well as oil painting, Nina is also a teaching artist and has been involved in numerous workshops, lectures and presentations. Ghanbarzadeh is also the featured speaker for the September 28 lecture on Iranian art and culture.

Book Discussion (Sept. 28 and October 5): Things We Left Unsaid” a novel by renowned Iranian-Armenian author, Zoya Pirzad will be discussed on two Wednesday evenings, September 28 and October 5 from 4:45pm-6:15pm (just prior to the evening’s lecture) in Room 101.  UW-WC English Professor, Dr. Anne Widmayer will lead the discussion of the 352-page book that provides a humorous and intimate look into the hopes and aspirations of Iranian family life in the years prior to the Islamic revolution. Described by The Bookbag as a “slice of life in an alien culture; it packs a smorgasbord of cultural and national flavour into each page.” There is no cost to participate in the book discussion. To register or for more information, phone 262-335-5214 or email: lee.wagner@uwc.edu Interested participants should purchase the book on their own. A limited number of books are available for loan from the UW-WC library.

Concert (September 30):  On Friday, September 30, at 7:30pm, Sultans of String will present a creative taste of world music. The quartet from Canada has won the #1 spot in Canada’s top ten list and two JUNO nominations (Canada’s Grammy) for their genre-hopping passport of world rhythms. In addition to Arabic music, the audience will enjoy Celtic reels, Gypsy-jazz, Cuban and South Asian rhythms. Tickets to the Sept. 30 concert are $20 adults, $18 seniors (over 62) and $18 for youth under 18. To purchase tickets, visit the campus website, www.washington.uwc.edu

Nov. 2: Film: Jafar Panahi’s Taxi – Iranian director,Panahi poses as a taxi driver to produce this film that reveals the social challenges in Iran. Banned from filmmaking on the grounds of political dissent, the film is seen through the windshield of his taxi as he drives the streets of Tehran, filming encounters with his customers via the dashboard camera that he passes off as a security device.

UW-Washington County is located at 400 University Drive in West Bend (exit Hwy. 33 East). Visitors should use the main entrance and follow the interior directional signs. Free parking is available. More information is available on the campus website at washington.uwc.edu.  


Sue Bausch, Regional Director of Communications