Meanings of Hope and Change in 'Era of Obama' Is Focus of UNH Event Sept. 23
Media Contact:  Lori Wright
UNH Media Relations

Contact for Information:  Cait Vaughan
Center for the Humanities
September 16, 2009

DURHAM, N.H. – President Barack Obama's election and presidency hold different meanings for many people. The University of New Hampshire will explore the diverse and layered meanings of hope and the real-life manifestations and complications of change in the "era of Obama" at an event Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2009.

“High Hopes” will be held from 12:30 to 2 p.m. in Memorial Union Building Theater II. It is free and open to the public.

“Since November, whether one is having an academic conversation in a university setting with faculty and students, or sitting on the porch with friends, or talking to young children — the themes of hope, change, and possibility continue to emerge and they grow more complex and layered with each conversation,” said Cait Vaughan with the UNH Center for the Humanities.

At this event, participants will explore what import and substance these concepts have to the culture of the United States, now and in the future. How do people of all different backgrounds view and understand “the price and promise of citizenship,” particularly under the Obama administration? What do President Barack Obama’s words, ideas, and style of leadership convey to and demand of U.S. citizens as we work toward the perfecting of our union?

The event will consist of a moderated panel discussion followed by questions and a group discussion with the audience. Panelists are Marla Brettschneider, professor of political science and women’s studies; Carol Conaway, assistant professor of women's studies; and Melissa-Leigh Gore, an undergraduate student in English and Africana and African American studies.

The event is sponsored by the minors in Africana and African American Studies; American Studies; and Race, Culture and Power under the UNH Center for the Humanities.

The University of New Hampshire, founded in 1866, is a world-class public research university with the feel of a New England liberal arts college. A land, sea, and space-grant university, UNH is the state's flagship public institution, enrolling 11,800 undergraduate and 2,400 graduate students.