Frederic Ewen Lecture on Civil Liberties and Academic Freedom

Frederic Ewen was a professor of English at Brooklyn College from 1930 to 1952. In 1940, during the height of the McCarthy era, Ewen refused to testify before a New York State legislative panel on allegations of subversive activities of the city’s public schools and colleges. He said of the decision to investigate the educational system “is an attack on the things that the system stands for and has fought in the last 20 years to obtain.” Ewen was recommended for a promotion in 1942, which was declined by the president of Brooklyn College at the time. Though he was forced to retire in 1952, an annual lecture series on civil liberties and academic freedom was later established in his honor by his nephew, Herbert Kurz.

Past Events

Not all events are digitally available.

Fall 2020

  • September 22, 2020: Race, Violence, and Power with Kobie Colemon
  • October 8, 2020: Shimmering Contraries: Medieval Grammar and the Rise of Race and Racism

Fall 2018–Spring 2019

Fall 2017–Spring 2018

Fall 2016–Spring 2017

Fall 2015–Spring 2016

Fall 2014–Spring 2015

Fall 2013–Spring 2014

Fall 2012–Spring 2013

Fall 2011–Spring 2012

Fall 2010–Spring 2011

Brooklyn. All in.