Ambassador James P. Zumwalt

Please join the Center for Asian Studies for a lecture Friday, March 2nd, at 11:20 a.m. in the Hatfield Room.

Title: “Goodwill and the Alliance: U.S. Japan Cooperation during and after March 11th.”

Presenter: Ambassador James P. Zumwalt James Zumwalt

Abstract: On March 11, 2011, a 9.0-magnitude earthquake struck Japan off the coast of Tohoku followed by a devastating tsunami that killed nearly 20,000 people including two Americans. It was the largest earthquake on record to hit Japan and triggered the meltdown of two nuclear reactors in Fukushima. In the days and weeks following the disaster, the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo mobilized U.S. government operations and resources provided to the Japanese government while the U.S. military coordinated massive humanitarian aid and disaster relief operations dubbed, Operation Tomodachi (i.e. “friend” in Japanese). This support has generated significant goodwill between the two countries and reinforced the importance of the U.S.-Japan alliance.

As part of its newest outreach series on U.S.-Japan relations, The Alliance Working in America, Sasakawa USA is co-sponsoring a special lecture at Willamette University to discuss U.S.-Japan cooperation in the aftermath of Japan’s March 11 Great Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami. The lecture will feature Sasakawa USA CEO, Ambassador James P. Zumwalt, who was the Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo at the time of the crisis. He will discuss his role and the U.S. government’s response following the disaster, the importance of the U.S.-Japan alliance to American interests, and the future of U.S.-Japan cooperation.

About Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA
Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA is an independent American non-profit, non-partisan institution in Washington, D.C. devoted to research, analysis, and better understanding of U.S.-Japan relations. Through research and education programs, Sasakawa USA facilitates people-to-people exchange and dialogue between American and Japanese policymakers, influential citizens, and the broader public.

Contact Information:
Name: Miho Fujiwara
Phone: 503-370-6015

The Importance of Being Crafty

threadCreating things with our hands is an important part of the human experience. Creative activities such as baking, woodworking, quilting, beading, knitting, scrapbooking and more, bring pleasure and satisfaction to people young and old across America. According to the Association for Creative Industries “crafting can reduce stress, build self-esteem and increase physical dexterity.” Happily, March is National Craft Month so now is the perfect time to explore your creative side and get crafting!

In recognition of National Craft Month, check out some of the craft-related titles available in the Hatfield Library on our WU Reads Reading Guide.

Faculty Colloquium: Stephen Patterson

Please join us Friday, March 2nd, at 3 p.m. in the Hatfield Room for our fifth Faculty Colloquium of this semester.

Presenter: Stephen Patterson, George H. Atkinson Professor of Religious and Ethical Studies

Title: “Here Come the Androgynes! A Forgotten Episode In Ancient Christianity.”

Abstract: Before early Christians said anything new about God, Jesus, death, resurrection, eternal life or sin, they said something new about gender: There is no male and female. Yes, the followers of Jesus dabbled in strategic androgyny. And I’ve got pictures!

Students are welcome and coffee and treats will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there.

Ellen Eisenberg and Bill Kelm
Faculty Colloquium Coordinators

Faculty Colloquium: DeLessio-Parson

Please join us Friday, February 23rd, at 3 p.m. in the Hatfield Room for our fourth Faculty Colloquium of this semester.

Presenter: Anne DeLessio-Parson, Visiting Instructor Sociology Anne DeLessio-Parson Photo

Title: “Conceptualizing Eating for Liberation: A Participatory Action Project”

Abstract: Structures of power and oppression impede collective responses to the unfolding climate crisis. When we want to take action as individuals, it can be challenging to determine where to focus our efforts. Food as a medium for motivating action holds enormous potential to drive social change: food is a universal human need, and the act of eating invites us into a conversation when we sit down to share the table. In this talk, I will present the framework for Eating for Liberation 2018, a food-focused participatory action project. This project invites participants to develop their food philosophies and consider how individual choices relate to collective patterns of consumption, thought, and movement. By bringing together readings from across disciplines, it also provides a space for synthesis and the cultivation of critical consciousness. I will also reflect on the ways that social network theory informs project concept and study design. We are also still seeking participants, you may go to to learn more.

Students are welcome and coffee and treats will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there.

Ellen Eisenberg and Bill Kelm
Faculty Colloquium Coordinators

Reading by Samiya Bashir

Please join us for the first event of the Spring 2018 Hallie Ford and Teppola Literary Series, a poetry reading by Samiya Bashir. The reading will take place on Monday, February 12th at 7:30 p.m. in the Hatfield Room (2nd floor of Hatfield Library) and is free and open to the public.

PLEASE NOTE: The event date has changed. Previously, Professor Bashir was slated to read this Thursday. Due to a scheduling conflict, the event has been changed to next Monday, February 12th. So mark your calendars!

Samiya Bashir is the author of three books of poetry: Field Theories; Gospel; and Where the Apple Falls, which were both Lambda Literary Award finalists. Her poetry, stories, articles and editorial work have been featured in numerous publications most recently including Poetry, World Literature Today, Ecotone, HOAX, The Offing, and Poet Lore among many others. Sometimes she makes poems of dirt. Sometimes zeros and ones. Sometimes variously rendered text. Sometimes light. Bashir has collaborated with a number of visual and media artists on projects such as M A P S :: a cartography in progress, with Roland Dahwen Wu, Coronagraphy with Tracy Schlapp, and “Breach,” with Alison Saar, currently on exhibition at L.A. Louver. She lives in Portland, Oregon, where she teaches creative writing at Reed College.

About Field Theories:
“In verse, Bashir considers multiple realities through the lens of race and class, questioning dominant narratives. ‘Starting with her title, Field Theories, Samiya Bashir challenges the vocabulary of science,’ Durand writes, ‘finding inflections and echoes within that vocabulary of the long and brutal history of race and racially based economic exploitation in the U.S.A.’

“When used within the respective sciences of physics, psychology and social science, the term “field theory” (singular) has specific meanings. “Unified field theory,” in particular, coined by Albert Einstein, refers to the attempt to find a single framework behind all that exists (gravity, however, continues to escape this effort). But by changing “theory” to “theories,” (plural) Bashir subverts that idea of a singular framework to reveal the multiplicity of reality: where there is one reality there will be other realities told in various forms, splitting the dominant narrative into a prism of narratives. In contrasts and convergences, she questions history (histories) and how it is (they are) articulated in even the most objective of “fields.” In fact, “field” itself is a loaded word within slavery’s context, indicating enforced agricultural labor.” (Hyperallergic, Marcella Durand)

“Field Theories pivots around this central theme, that the black body—scientifically speaking—is an idealized physical body that absorbs (my italics) electromagnetic radiation, while a white body reflects (my italics) all rays completely and uniformly in all directions. It’s how Bashir renders that theme which makes this collection worth reading. She has taken science and folklore and emphasized the interactions between the individual and his or her environment with a lyrical adeptness that excites the poem/s. There is an intuitive force and a soul to this collection, but there is also the shadow. The mind versus the body, light versus darkness, the individual versus society, and how we measure them all —all of which are very alive throughout each section, either through her exploration of properties or characteristics, “life space,” and the behaving selves.” (The Poetry Foundation, Harriet Staff)

Faculty Colloquium: David Altman

Please join us on Friday, February 9th, at 3:30 p.m. in Collins 318 for our third Faculty Colloquium of this semester.

Presenter: David Altman, Associate Professor of Physics
David Altman Photo
Title: Regulation of the Motor Protein Myosin in a Cell

The inside of a cell is both incredibly crowded and extremely organized. It is the organization within a cell that allows it to be an exciting environment capable of the functions associated with life. Important players in a cell’s ability to stay ordered are motor proteins. These microscopic engines allow a cell to transport, compartmentalize, and arrange its components by generating force and creating motion. In this talk, I will discuss work both conducted in my lab and with collaborating labs to understand how the motor protein myosin is regulated in a cell. I will highlight studies that span many scales of size and complexity, from single motor studies of purified proteins to investigations of the mechanical properties of muscle fibers.

To account for other science lectures on campus please note the special start time and location. Students are welcome and coffee and treats will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there.

Ellen Eisenberg and Bill Kelm
Faculty Colloquium Coordinators

Archives and Social Justice

Please join us Tuesday, February 6, 4:00 – 5:30 p.m. in the Hatfield Room to hear Natalia Fernández present on the topic of “Archives and Social Justice: The Archivist as Activist.” Drawing from her professional experiences curating the Oregon State University Oregon Multicultural Archives, as well as co-founding the OSU Queer Archives, Fernández’s lecture is an exploration and reflection of what it means to be an “activist archivist” both in theory and in practice.

This event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided.
Please encourage your students to attend!

Sponsored by the History Department and Willamette University’s Archives and Special Collections with funding provided by Willamette’s Mellon-funded Learning By Creating initiative. Natalia Fernández Photo

In addition to the public lecture, Fernández will meet with students enrolled in HIST 221 (American History Workshop) to conduct an interactive workshop designed to introduce students to the methodologies of building an archive. She will speak about collaborating with local and regional communities to build partnerships utilizing non-traditional methods to ensure that historical records are preserved and remain accessible over the long term.

About the Speaker: Natalia Fernández is an associate professor and the Curator and Archivist of the Oregon Multicultural Archives (OMA) and the OSU Queer Archives (OSQA) at the Oregon State University Special Collections and Archives Research Center. Fernández’s mission for directing the OMA and the OSQA is to work in collaboration with Oregon’s African American, Asian American, Latino/a, Native American, and OSU’s LGBTQ+ communities to support them in preserving their histories and sharing their stories. Her scholarship relates to her work as an archivist, specifically best practices for working with communities of color. Fernández has published in the Oregon Historical Quarterly, Journal of Western Archives, The American Archivist, Multicultural Perspectives, and Archival Practice. Fernández holds an M.A. in Information Resources and Library Science from the University of Arizona (U of A). She graduated from the U of A Knowledge River Program, a program that focuses on community-based librarianship and partnerships with traditionally underserved communities.

American Heart Month

heart imageLyndon B. Johnson proclaimed February as American Heart Month back in 1963…over 50 years later, we are still recognizing this important month.  For many, February is all about flowers, candy, cupid, and Valentine’s Day but American Heart Month is intended to draw attention to the seriousness of heart health.  According to the American Heart Association, “cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke, remains the leading global cause of death with more than 17.3 million deaths each year.”  So this February, increase your awareness of heart disease and encourage those you love to think about the importance of making healthy choices.  To find out more about heart health, go to the American Heart Association.

In recognition of American Heart Month, check out some of the heart-related books available in the Hatfield Library on our WU Reads Reading Guide.


Reading by Emily Johnston

Please join us for a reading and discussion with Emily Johnston, poet, essayist, and activist.

Thursday, February 1st at 4:15 p.m. in the Hatfield Room.

Johnston’s writing explores the beauty of the natural world, grief at its destruction by human action and inaction, and our obligations to the future. She is the author of the poetry volume Her Animals, as well as essays in Truthout, The Guardian, and elsewhere. She is one of the five Valve Turners who in 2016 shut down tar sands oil pipelines entering the US. Facing felony charges for their actions, she and two co-defendants have been granted the opportunity to argue in court that their actions were necessary.

All are welcome. We hope to see you there.

Frann Michel
Professor of English
Co-chair, Film Studies

“HTTPS” New Standard Explained

In case you have bookmarked websites, you may begin to noticed that more of these links are broken.  Why the sudden uptick in broken links?  The culprit is probably not a new URL or a negligent systems administrator.  Rather it is most likely due to the new standard of Hypertext Transfer Protocol, or what most users recognize as the “HTTP” beginning of most URLs.

The new standard has added an “S” to “HTTP,” so you will see more and more web sites using “HTTPS” to begin their URL.  In case you are curious, the “S” stands for “Secure.” You might ask what makes this new standard more secure?

To answer this question, it helps to understand how information is sent through the standard HTTP.  Data is sent over the Internet in small packets of information that are not typically encrypted.  The data is sent from your computer browser to a website server and back in fractions of a second.  The new standard has added a layer of security through an encrypted security layer known as a Secure Socket Layer (SSL) and/or Transport Layer Security (TLS).

Normally, sending info packets through a SSL or TLS slows down the process of distributing information.  However, websites can speed up the process by adding SSL or TLS certificates in their code libraries where the encoding and decoding of website info takes place.  Web browsers such as Chrome, Safari, Edge, and FireFox automatically seek our the certificates and will have some indication of site security such as a lock.  Depending on the browser, web sites that don’t have SSL or TLS certificates will often have an “I” before the URL to let users view the web site’s information before visiting the site.  Often  sites Below are a few sample URLs.

If the page or site uses HTTPS, some SSL or TLS parameters are exchanged between your browser and the site’s server, and a secure connection is opened for information to be encrypted and transferred.  Web sites that use a SSL or TLS pass through their web site information through an extra layer of security and meet a higher standard of security.  This is important when sensitive information such as financial or health or personal info is transferred over the internet, but a good chunk of web sites do not necessarily need this additional layer of security.

The main take away is when you encounter these more secure sites, it may take longer to interact with them, but it is for a good cause.  Your personal information is running through additional security.  And if you can’t find your bookmarked links it might be because the site is using the new “HTTPS” standard.

For more information about this, visit: