UW News

October 25, 2016

Philosophy of immigration: Panel discussion Oct. 27 part of two-day UW conference

UW News

Though it is longstanding United States policy not to discriminate among potential immigrants on the basis of religion, the heated 2016 election campaign has brought calls from some to change that practice. A panel discussion at the University of Washington will address such immigration-related questions from philosophical, sociological and historical perspectives.

The discussion, titled “Immigration, Religion, and Human Rights,” will be held 7-9 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 27, in Room 332 of the HUB. The event is free and open to the public.

Read Michael Rosenthal’s article for the Stroum Center for Jewish Studies:
My father was a refugee. Here’s why the immigration conversation matters.

Moderating the discussion will be Michael Rosenthal, professor of philosophy and Samuel and Althea Stroum Chair in Jewish Studies. The panelists will be:

  • Michael Blake, professor with the Department of Philosophy and Evans School of Public Policy & Governance
  • Kathie Friedman, associate professor in the Jackson School of International Studies
  • Sarah Eltantawi, assistant professor of comparative religion and Islamic studies at Evergreen State College.
  • Thomas Schmidt, professor of philosophy of religion, Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany

The discussion is part of a two-day conference Oct. 27 and 28 titled “Immigration, Toleration, and Human Rights,” organized by William J. Talbott, UW professor of philosophy, and Amos Nascimento, associate professor in the UW Tacoma School of Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences.

The conference will bring diverse international scholars together to explore questions related to the global rise in immigration and refugee displacement, such as:

  • What kind of toleration and treatment do immigrants and refugees deserve by virtue of their humanity?
  • How have national and international organizations acted to protect their human rights, and how should they act?
  • What do liberal societies owe to immigrants and refugees from nonliberal societies?

During the conference, Blake will present on “Justice, Migration, and Mercy”; Nascimento on “Immigration, Human Rights, and Critical Theory”; and Elizabeth Bruch of UW Tacoma on “Sovereignty as Responsibility: Human Rights, Refugees, and the Syrian Conflict.” Conference registration is online.

The conference and discussion have multiple sponsors, among them the UW Tri-Campus Research Cluster on Human Interactions & Normative Innovation, the Global Innovation Fund of the UW Office of Global Affairs, and the Simpson Center for the Humanities.


For more information, contact Talbott at 206-543-5095 or wtalbott@uw.edu, or Rosenthal at 206-685-2655 or rosentha@uw.edu.