John Seigenthaler, American writer and political figure, and Mustafa Akyol, Turkish journalist and author, will discuss their cultures’ approach to freedom of religious expression in secular cultures. From Muslim and Christian perspectives, each will relate case studies with which he has first-hand experience.
This collaborative one-day conference, hosted by Rochester College with co-sponsor The Niagara Foundation, will wrap up with a wide-ranging panel discussion built around questions from the audience.
John Seigenthaler founded the First Amendment Center at Vanderbilt University in 1991 with the mission of creating national discussion, dialogue and debate about First Amendment rights and values. A former president of the American Society of Newspaper Editors, Seigenthaler served for 43 years as an award-winning journalist for The Tennessean, Nashville’s morning newspaper. At his retirement, he was editor, publisher and CEO. In 1982, Seigenthaler became founding editorial director of USA TODAY and served in that position for a decade, retiring from both the Nashville and national newspapers in 1991. Active in American political life, Seigenthaler was a close personal friend to both John F. Kennedy and Robert F. Kennedy. He was a special assistant to Atty.Gen. Robert F. Kennedy.
Mustafa Akyol is a Turkish intellectual who writes columns for two Turkish daily papers, Star and Hürriyet Daily News. Akyol has presented seminars in several universities or think-tanks in the United States and the United Kingdom on issues of Islam, politics and Turkish affairs. His articles on Islamic issues have appeared in publications such as Foreign Affairs, The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Huffington Post, The Weekly Standard, Newsweek, Islam Online and many other publications. His latest book, Islam Without Extremes: A Muslim Case for Liberty was published by W.W. Norton in July 2011. The book was praised by Financial Times as “a forthright and elegant Muslim defense of freedom.” He studied political science and history at the Bogaziçi University in Istanbul, where he still lives.
|9 a.m.||Welcome and Overview|
|9:15 a.m.||John Seigenthaler|
|10:45 a.m.||Mustafa Akyol|
|Noon||Lunch at local restaurants|
|2 p.m.||Moderated Discussion with Keynote Speakers|
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