UB Humanities Institute to Showcase Work of SUNY Distinguished Professor Jorge Gracia

Release Date: September 21, 2012


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Jorge J.E. Gracia will be honored Sept. 28 at the UB Humanities Institute's Annual Scholar Session.

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo Humanities Institute will honor Jorge J.E. Gracia, PhD, Samuel P. Capen Chair and SUNY Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Comparative Literature, on Sept. 28 at its Annual Scholar Session.

The free public session, to be held at 4 p.m. in 420 Capen Hall, UB North Campus, will feature presentations about Gracia and his internationally recognized work by two of the most distinguished scholars in his field.

One is Kwame Anthony Appiah, PhD, Laurence S. Rochefeller University Professor of Philosophy at Princeton University, a Ghanaian-British-American philosopher, cultural theorist and novelist whose interests include political and moral theory, the philosophy of language and mind, and African intellectual history. Among his critically acclaimed books is "The Honor Code: How Moral Revolutions Happen" (2010), which has been called "monstrously interesting."

Appiah will be joined by Ilan Stavans, PhD, Lewis-Sebring Professor in Latin American and Latino Culture at Amherst College, a widely celebrated Mexican-American essayist, lexicographer, cultural commentator, translator and author whose bestselling work focuses on language, identity, politics and history. Known as a sharp, fast writer, he has produced 48 books, among them "The Hispanic Condition," "Tropical Synagogues," "The Left-Handed Pianist" and his magnum opus, "The Norton Anthology of Latino Literature," described by The Nation as feeling "less like a book and more like a magic carpet ride through time and space."

Although less well-known to his Western New York neighbors than are many UB faculty members, Jorge Gracia is nevertheless one of the most accomplished, productive, accessible and warmly regarded members of the university community.

He is a distinguished, multiple award-winning philosopher who has written or edited more than 40 books -- many of them on such topics as metaphysics and ontology, philosophical historiography and Hispanic/Latino/Latin-American philosophy. His groundbreaking contributions to the philosophical study of race and ethnicity have helped shape the field and address many issues that previous theories had left unanswered.

Gracia also is recognized for significant contributions to the history of medieval philosophy, hermeneutics and philosophy of religion

Executive Director of the UB Humanities Institute Carrie Tirado-Bramen, associate professor of English, says, "The annual scholar session allows the institute to showcase the work of UB's outstanding faculty members in the humanities to the larger Buffalo community."

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