“Wars of Words: Civility and Toleration in Early Modern Political Thought”
A lecture by Teresa Bejan
University of Oxford
Politicians and intellectuals today warn that we face a crisis of civility, with partisan hatreds and wars of words polluting our public sphere. In liberal democracies committed to tolerating diversity as well as active, often heated disagreement, the loss of this conversational virtue appears critical.
Drawing on insights in early modern political thought, Dr. Bejan’s lecture will explore a path forward, one that challenges assumptions about what a tolerant and civil society should look like today.
TERESA BEJAN is Associate Professor of Political Theory and Fellow of Oriel College at the University of Oxford. She received her Ph.D. with distinction from Yale in 2013, and her dissertation was awarded the American Political Science Association’s Strauss Award for the best dissertation in political philosophy. Her first book, Mere Civility: Disagreement and the Limits of Toleration (Harvard University Press, 2017) was called “penetrating and sophisticated” by the New York Times, and her work has been featured on PBS, WNYC, CBC radio, Philosophy Bites and other podcasts. In addition to her many articles in academic journals and edited volumes, she has written on free speech and civility for The Atlantic and The Washington Post.
Cookies, tea, and coffee will be served.