BGIA News and Events

James Clarke Chace Memorial Speaker Series 


Our Speaker Series features leading figures in international affairs discussing topical and timely issues of global concern. Events are typically held one Thursday evening per month. The James Clarke Chace Speaker Series is co-sponsored by Foreign Affairs magazine. These events are free and open to the public by RSVP.

Current and Upcoming Events


The Enduring False Promise of Preventive War

Thursday, February 21, 2019

A James Clarke Chace Memorial Speaker Series Event

Scott Silverstone of West Point – The U.S. Military Academy will discuss his new book, From Hitler’s Germany to Saddam's Iraq: The Enduring False Promise of Preventive War, in conversation with Malia Du Mont of Bard College. This event, which is part of BGIA’s James Clarke Chace Memorial Speaker Series, is cosponsored and hosted by the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs and supported by Foreign Affairs magazine. The event is free and open to the public by RSVP.

This book boldly challenges conventional wisdom about the value of preventive war. Beginning with the rise of German power and the French and British response to the Rhineland crisis leading to World War II, Silverstone overturns the common impulse to point an accusing finger at British leadership for its alleged naïveté, willful blindness, or outright cowardice. Arguing against the belief that Britain could have contained Germany and avoided war if it had used force when Hitler remilitarized the Rhineland, the author uses this dramatic event to wrestle with a general strategic problem that has broad relevance for our current foreign policy dilemmas. Silverstone argues that the Rhineland crisis is a critical case for studying a central dynamic of world history—power shifts among states—and the preventive war temptation that power shifts frequently produce. There has been surging interest in the idea of preventive war, an interest stimulated by the Bush administration’s articulation of the “preemption doctrine” in 2002 and the disastrous invasion of Iraq in 2003, and by frustration over the difficulty of preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons by such states as North Korea and Iran. Clarifying the way we think about preventive war, the author analyzes the enduring strategic flaws in preventive war that must inform how political leaders and the public think about this option as a means of dealing with shifting threats in the modern world. Offering a radically conservative argument for when to wage war, this persuasive book will be essential reading for policy makers and concerned citizens alike.

Scott A. Silverstone is an ASU Future of War Fellow at New America and a professor of international relations at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Malia Du Mont is chief of staff to the president of Bard College, where she teaches grand strategy. She is an officer in the U.S. Army Reserve.
Time: 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Location: Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs
Sponsor: Bard Globalization & International Affairs Program
Contact: Julia Tinneny
E-mail: jtinneny@bard.edu

The Trials of Richard Goldstone: A Book Talk with Daniel Terris

Thursday, March 28, 2019

A James Clarke Chace Memorial Speaker Series Event

Al-Quds Bard dean Daniel Terris will discuss his new book, The Trials of Richard Goldstone, in conversation with South African journalist Redi Tlhabi. This event, which is part of BGIA's James Clarke Chace Memorial Speaker Series, is cosponsored and hosted by the Vance Center for International Justice, and is supported by Foreign Affairs magazine. It is free and open to the public by RSVP

In June 2009, Richard Goldstone was a global hero, honored by the MacArthur Foundation for its prize in international justice. Four months later, he was called a “quisling” and compared to some of the worst traitors in human history. Why? Because this champion of human rights and international law chose to apply his commitment to fairness and truth to his own community. 

The Trials of Richard Goldstone tells the story of this extraordinary individual and the price he paid for his convictions. It describes how Goldstone, working as a judge in apartheid South Africa, helped to undermine this unjust system and later, at Nelson Mandela’s request, led a commission that investigated cases of racial violence and intimidation. It also considers the international renown he received as the chief United Nations prosecutor for war crimes committed in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, the first tribunals to try political and military leaders on charges of genocide. Finally, it explores how Goldstone became a controversial figure in the wake of the Jewish jurist’s powerful, but flawed, investigation of Israel for alleged war crimes in Gaza. 
Time: 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Location: Vance Center for International Justice, 44 West 44 Street, New York, NY 10036
Sponsor: Bard Globalization & International Affairs Program; Global and International Studies Program
Contact: Julia Tinneny
E-mail: jtinneny@bard.edu
Website: Event Website

Male, Female, Diverse: The Rise and Globalization of a 3rd Gender

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Recently the universal gender binary has been undermined by the introduction of a third sex in states such Australia, India, Nepal, and Germany. This talk explains the surprising rise of a third gender by analyzing the 2018 introduction of a legal third sex (“diverse”) in Germany. Theoretical and historical legacies of the pre-modern state and medical discourses of gender variance are contrasted with the re-introduction of a third sex as result of effective transnational social movement activism through the UN and human rights discourses. Intersex activists pushing for change reframed the discourse on gender assignment from an emphasis on “medical correction” towards an emphasis on “legal protection.” This shift led to a deeper questioning the gender binary by some international organizations, national parties, and courts. The rise and diffusion of the third gender category offers insights about the meaning of gender, state power and social movements.

Angelika von Wahl of Lafayatte College will lead this discussion, to be followed by a reception. This is part of BGIA's James Chace Lectures and is supported by Foreign Affairs magazine.
Time: 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Location: BGIA, 108 W 39th St, Suite 1000, New York, NY 10018