Events Calendar

Visiting Speaker - Dr. Donna Ladkin - Antioch University

Wednesday, April 3, 2019
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
John George Althouse Faculty of Education Building (FEB)
Room: 1010

"Leadership, power, and the pursuit of social justice: Insights from Jane Addams’ account of social ethics"

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How can those who lead approach social justice in ways that do not perpetuate unhelpful power relations between privileged parties who often decide what constitutes ‘justice’ and those affected by their pronouncements?  This talk considers this question by referring to the work of the social reformer Jane Addams.  Addams was critical of many of the powerful industrialists and politicians of Chicago in the late 1800s who aimed to ‘do good’, but who failed to engage meaningfully with those they were trying to help.  In particular, her notion of ‘sympathetic understanding’, a perceptual capability which strives to see the world from the perspective of the other, will be elaborated.  A key value of sympathetic understanding is that it creates the possibility of ‘caring for’ others in ways that may be more suitable than a more patriarchal orientation of ‘caring about’.  Although Addams was writing in the last century, her ideas remain remarkably pertinent to our contemporary situation, and the talk will suggest ways in which her thinking might helpfully inform any of us concerned with issues of social justice today.

Speaker Biography
Dr Donna Ladkin is Professor of Leadership and Ethics at the Graduate School of Leadership and Change, Antioch University in the USA.   A philosopher and musician by background, Donna is recognized for her novel approach to leadership as an embodied, aesthetic phenomenon.  Her award-winning books such as Rethinking Leadership:  A New Look at Old Leadership Questions (2010) and Mastering the Ethical Dimension of Organizations (2015) bring both philosophical and arts-based sensibilities to explore questions of leadership and ethics.  She has published extensively in journals such as Leadership Quarterly, Leadership, Business Ethics Quarterly, Academy of Management Learning and Education and the Journal of Business Ethics.

Coffee and cookies will be served. Please RSVP to by April 1, 2019 if you would like to attend.

Jen Heidenheim
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