Public Affairs Discussion Group to host talk on Islamic State

Karl C. KaltenthalerThe Public Affairs Discussion Group will host Karl C. Kaltenthaler, professor of political science at the University of Akron and director of research projects at the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics, on Friday, April 3, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in Kelvin Smith Library’s Dampeer Room. Kaltenthaler will present on the topic “Origins and Prospects of the Islamic State.”

The Islamic State, which is also referred to as ISIS or ISIL, has become the new face of military Islam. Its development out of the nearly defunct Al Qaeda in Iraq has been a startling transformation from a group near destruction to one that controls territory the size of Great Britain in Syria and Iraq and has sprouted franchises in Afghanistan, Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines and Yemen.

Kaltenthaler will discuss a series of questions related to the Islamic State:

  • How was the Islamic State able to make such a resurgence and conquer so much territory so quickly?
  • In what important ways does the Islamic State differ from Al Qaeda?
  • What are the ramifications of the competition between the Islamic State and Al Qaeda?
  • What will it take to defeat the Islamic State, and do the prospects for that look promising?
  • What are the stakes in the Islamic State’s rise and future? 

Since 1989, faculty, emeriti, students and staff have gathered on Fridays for a brown-bag lunch and to discuss topics in public affairs.

For updates and more information about the Friday lunch schedule, visit