January 29, 2014

Vol. 29 , No. 07   

Depolarizing Conflict in an Era of Globalization

Hiram Chodosh, the fifth President of Claremont McKenna College, is the first speaker of the Spring 2014 Athenaeum season. In his talk, President Chodosh will speak about his work in the field of academia, law, foreign affairs, and global justice. Before coming to CMC, President Chodosh was the Dean of S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah. Chodosh attended Yale Law School, and received his B.A. from Wesleyan University. He previously was the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Case Western Reserve University where he was also a Professor of Law.

President Chodosh is an internationally renowned expert on institutional justice reform. President Chodosh has had a long career of advising and reforming legal systems throughout the world. He served as a Senior Fulbright Scholar in India, where he has worked on the adaptation and expansion of mediation. He directed the Global Justice Project: Iraq, a law and policy think tank (2007-2009) that advised the Iraqi government on legislative and constitutional priorities. President Chodosh also has advised the IMF Legal Department, the World Bank Justice Reform Group, the State Department, and many supreme courts and ministries around the world. He has published many articles, books, and essays on mediation, corruption, legal reform, and international and comparative law. His forthcoming book, entitled The Uniform Civil Code of India: Blueprint for Scholarly Discourse (co-authored with Shimon Shetreet), will be published by Oxford University Press later this year.

Creating a Culture of Peace in the Middle East
LUNCHEON 11:30 a.m.; PROGRAM 12:00 p.m.

Shimon Shetreet is a Professor of Law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. He holds the Greenblatt chair of Public and International Law and is head of the Sacher Institute of Legislative Research and Comparative Law.

Shetreet was born in 1946 in Morocco and came to Israel in 1949. He completed his education in Israel and in the US, earning an LL.B and LL.M. from the Hebrew University. He earned his Masters and Doctoral degrees from the University of Chicago school of Law. He has served as Visiting Professor at a number of Universities including NYU School of Law, Case Western Reserve University School of Law, University of Manitoba, Wuerzburg University (Germany) and the University of San Diego and New York Law School of Law.

Professor Shetreet has published extensively and is the author and editor of a number of books: Judges on Trial (1976), Judicial Independence: The Contemporary Debate (1985), The Role of Courts in Society (1988), National Security and Free Speech (1991),Pioneers in Tears: Anthology on North African Jewry (1991), Justice in Israel (1994), Women in Law (1998), The Good Land between Power and Religion (1998), Law and Social Pluralism (2002), and On Adjudication (2004 ).

On the international level Professor Shetreet has been very active. He served as General Coordinator, International Bar association Project for Minimum Standards of Judicial Independence 1980-1982, Speaker, General Rapporteur and Chairman in numerous legal international conferences of leading academic and professional organizations, including, International Bar Association, First World Conference on the Independence of Justice, Congress of Comparative Law and International Association on Procedural Law.

Professor Shetreet comes from a religious family. He had his elementary studies in Jewish religious school and he also attended a Yeshiva in his youth years. When he was 13 he won the first Bible youth Contest in Israel. He pursued his scholarly interest in Bible studies and was a permanent member of the Bible Study Group of scholars that was hosted by Prime Minister Menachem Begin for about three years. Professor Shetreet is married to Miri, a social worker, and they have four children.

The Myths and Realities of CEO Pay

Michael Dorff is a Professor of Law at Southwestern Law School, where he teaches Contracts, Business Associations, and a joint course with the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management entitled Mergers & Acquisitions: Law, Strategy and Finance. He has previously taught Corporate Mergers & Acquisitions and Nonprofit Organizations at Southwestern and has also taught at UCLA School of Law and at Rutgers Law School.

Professor Dorff’s research focuses primarily on corporate governance (especially executive compensation) and the philosophy of law and economics. He has published numerous articles in these areas in publications such as the Southern California Law Review, the Journal of Corporation Law, and the Indiana Law Journal. He has also served as an expert witness on business law issues and has been appointed as a business dispute referee by the Los Angeles Superior Court. He has lectured widely on his research at law schools as well as corporate directors and officers throughout the country and internationally.

Michael Dorff graduated from Harvard College and Harvard Law School and clerked for Judge Levin H. Campbell on the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit before going on to private practice at firms in Houston and New York. His book on executive compensation, Indispensable and Other Myths: Why the CEO Pay Experiment Failed, and How to Fix It will be published by the University of California Press in the spring of 2014. His visit to CMC is sponsored by the Robert Day School for economics and finance.

In the Body of Justice
LUNCHEON 11:30 a.m.; PROGRAM 12:00 p.m.

Eve Ensler is a Tony Award-winning playwright, author, performer, and activist. She is perhaps most well known as the author of The Vagina Monologues (1996), an episodic play featuring a variety of monologues on the feminine experience. Since its first production, The Vagina Monologues have been translated into over 48 languages, performed in over 140 countries, including sold-out runs at both Off-Broadway’s Westside Theater and on London’s West End, and made into an HBO film.

Ensler’s has also written articles for The Guardian, Huffington Post, Washington Post, and the International Herald Tribune. Following her work with HBO, Ensler also produced the film What I Want My Words to Do to You, a documentary about the writing group she led at the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility for Women. The film premiered and won the Freedom of Expression Award at Sundance Film Festival and premiered nationally on PBS’s “P.O.V.” in December 2003.

Her awards include the Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship in Playwriting, and an Obie, in addition to a number of honorary degrees. She was named one of US News & World Report’s ”Best Leaders” in association with the Center for Public Leadership (CPL) at Harvard Kennedy School and one of “125 Women Who Changed Our World” by Good Housekeeping magazine (2010). In 2011 she was named one of Newsweek’s “150 Women Who Changed the World” and The Guardian’s “100 Most Influential Women.”

Ensler’s experience performing The Vagina Monologues inspired her to create V-Day, a global activist movement to stop violence against women and girls, which raises funds and awareness through benefit productions of her award-winning play and other artistic works. In 2011, over 5,600 V-Day benefits took place. To date, the V-Day movement has raised over $90 million and educated millions. V-Day’s newest campaign, ONE BILLION RISING launched in February 2012, and will culminate in a day of action on V-Day’s 15th anniversary, February 14th, 2013 when V-Day activists all over the world will STRIKE, DANCE, and RISE. The V-Day movement with the support of UNICEF and the Foundation Panzi, opened the “City of Joy,” a center for women survivors of gender violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2011. This center provides Congolese women with opportunities for self-development and group therapy.

Eve Ensler’s visit to campus is jointly sponsored by the Kravis Leadership Institute, the Berger Institute for Work, Family and Children, the Robert Day School, the Center for Human Rights Leadership, the Center for Writing and Public Discourse, and the Athenaeum. All the fees that fund this program at the Athenaeum will go to the “City of Joy” project.

Religious Extremism: The Good, the Bad, and the Deadly

By modeling religious activity as a product of rational choice and market forces, the economics of religion offers new insights concerning religious trends, the consequences of religious freedom, doctrinal innovation, and the enduring appeal of extremism. The work both complements and challenges that of sociologists, historians, and other religious scholars. Club-theoretic models of sectarianism highlight the potential benefits of strictness and sacrifice, not only in religions, but also in communes, gangs, military units, social movements, political organizations, and even academic subfields.
-Laurence Iannaccone

Laurence Iannaconne is professor of economics at the Arbyros School of Business and Economics at Chapman University. He is also the director of the Institute for the Study of Religion, Economics, and Society. In more than fifty publications, Dr. Iannaccone has applied economic insights to study denominational growth, church attendance, religious giving, conversion, extremism, international trends, and many other aspects of religion and spirituality. His articles have appeared in numerous academic journals, including American Economic Review, Journal of Political Economy, American Journal of Sociology, and Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion. He is currently writing two books on the economics of religion.

Professor Iannaconne’s visit to campus is sponsored by the Lowe Institute for Political Economy and the Salvatori Center for the Study of Individual Freedom at CMC.

The European Marvell

Nigel Smith is the William and Annie S. Paton Foundation Professor of Ancient and Modern Literature at Princeton University, where he is also the Co-Director of the Center for the Study of Books and Media. He is one of the preeminent specialists in early modern British literature, with a particular interest in literary and political writing of the seventeenth century.

Professor Smith’s first two monographs, Perfection Proclaimed: Language and Literature in English Radical Religion 1640-1660 (Oxford UP, 1989) and Literature and Revolution in England, 1640-1660 (Yale UP, 1994), brought new attention to, and insight into, the literary, social, and cultural worlds of the Interregnum. More recently, he has illuminated the life and work of the major seventeenth-century poet Andrew Marvell, in a biography, Andrew Marvell: The Chameleon (Yale UP, 2010), as well as a densely annotated edition, The Poems of Andrew Marvell (Longman, 2003, pbk 2007), both of which were selected as Times Literary Supplement books of the year.

Smith has been a member of the Institute for Advanced Study and has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Humanities Center. In addition to various other studies and editions of early modern English writing, Professor Smith has also written about the relationship between music and poetry and, with Paul Muldoon, co-founded the rock band Rackett.

Nigel Smith’s talk is entitled “The European Marvell” and will address Marvell’s interest in different kinds of European poetry, poets, and poetic roles. His visit to CMC is jointly sponsored by the department of literature and the Athenaeum.


  • The Athenaeum serves as a gathering place where ideas, inquiry, and fellowship bring students, faculty, staff, other scholars, and nationally prominent speakers together.

  • Attendance at any event may be limited to persons associated with CMC, to the people who signed up for the dinner, or to the maximum number of people allowed by fire regulations.

  • On some occasions the speaker may address the group in another forum or the College may set up a video feed to handle an overflow crowd. All programs at the Athenaeum are filmed. Individuals attending should understand that their image might appear on the videotape.

  • House rules and common courtesy prohibit disruptive actions inside the building during an Athenaeum sponsored program.

  • Time allowing, there will be a period set aside for questions. Students will have priority during this portion of the program.

  • Guests are expected to dress appropriately in all dining rooms. Shorts, jeans, and t-shirts are not acceptable at dinner; more casual attire is acceptable for lunch and tea. No bare feet at any time.


  • It is the policy of the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum that no lecture, appearance or performance by any speaker or performer at the Athenaeum is to be videotaped, audiotaped, or otherwise recorded and/or broadcast without the prior written permission of the relevant speaker, performer, or other authorized owner of the intellectual property rights to the event.

  • Anyone requesting permission to record an event is required to submit an “Event Recording Request Form” to Bonnie Snortum, the Director of the Athenaeum, at least 48 hours in advance of the relevant event.

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  • If you have any questions regarding this policy, please contact Bonnie Snortum at bsnortum@cmc.edu or at (909) 607-4180.