2021 Walter A. Strauss Lecture Series

The 2021 Walter A. Strauss Lecture Series is presented by Sylvester A. Johnson, founding director of the Virginia Tech Center for Humanities and a nationally recognized humanities scholar specializing in the study of technology, race, religion and national security. He is assistant vice provost for the humanities at Virginia Tech and executive director of the university’s Tech for Humanity initiative.

This lecture series, hosted in memory of Walter A. Strauss (1923-2008), who was the Elizabeth and William T. Treuhaft Professor of Humanities, is generously supported by funds provided by the Paul Wurzburger Endowment.

Johnson will present three lectures, to take place from 5 to 6 p.m. each day. They are:

  • Monday, Nov. 1 – “From Fetish to the Cyborg: Technology as a Humanistic Problem”
  • Wednesday, Nov. 3 – “Can Robots Feel Pain? The ‘Science of the Soul’ and the Personhood of Things”
  • Thursday, Nov. 4 – “The Racial History of Capital and the Digital Future of Humanity: Lessons for the Ethical Governance of Technology”

Registration is required and can be completed online.

The lectures will also be live-streamed.