Focus Series

Join us as we explore our 2021 theme: Human Rights around the Globe
All events will be held via Zoom and are free and open to the public. 

Fall 2021 Events:

Thursday, September 30th, 6:00pm:
Dr. Noura Erakat, “Palestinian Freedom, Israeli Apartheid, and Transnational Solidarity”
This lecture will address the racial dimensions of Israeli settler colonization of Palestinian lands and how it is tantamount to apartheid as defined by the 1973 Convention, the legal dimension of apartheid, and the distinctions within Palestinian intellectual thought on the matter. The lecture will also explore how transnational solidarity has been a key source of Palestinian resistance and steady social justice transformation.

This lecture is co-sponsored by the University of Michigan
 Click to Join Lecture
Click to Join Event
Thursday, October 7th, 10:00am:
Mr. Sonyanga Weblen, “Gender-Based Violence and Human Rights in Kenya”
Thursday, October 14th, 1:00pm:
Ms. Zubayra Shamseden, “From Repression to Genocide: China's Uyghur phobia”
This presentation will discuss China's genocide against Uyghur people and why it is happening now.
Thursday, November 11th, 3:00pm:
Dr. Mark Huston, “Making Sense of Human Rights”
This presentation will examine the nature of Human Rights. More specifically, it will clarify the different ways Human Rights are understood (moral, political, etc.) and present how the Human Rights scholar James W. Nickel "makes sense" of human rights.
Friday, November 19th, 1:00pm:
Professor Samer Hariri, “Breathing Rights”
This presentation highlights air pollution as a human rights issue. Global and local examples will be used to demonstrate the impact of low air quality on the health and well-being of people.


Each year, the International Institute coordinates a campus-wide focus on one cultural region of the world or global theme. Launched in January 2004, the Focus Series features films, presentations, displays and performances allowing students and community to explore the culture, politics, economics and history of the featured region and its relation to the rest of the world. Instructors in many departments introduce materials related to the theme, and encourage their students to participate in these varied learning opportunities.

The Series sponsors talks by faculty from colleges and universities, leaders in area community organizations as well as other experts speaking on a wide variety of topics about the focus region. These presentations are videotaped and the DVDs are available to students and instructors at Schoolcraft's Bradner Library.

The Focus Series is supported by a generous grant from the Alexander and Rachel Liberacki Fund and Schoolcraft Student Activities.

Coming Winter 2022: Global Education


Previous Focus Regions

  • 2004: Middle East
  • 2005: Latin America
  • 2006: Africa
  • 2007: Europe
  • 2008: East Asia
  • 2009: South Asia
  • 2010: Middle East
  • 2011: North America
  • 2012: Latin America
  • 2013: Russia & Environs
  • 2014: Caribbean
  • 2015: Southeast Asia
  • 2016: Immigration & Immigrant Communities
  • 2017: Environmental Challenges in a Changing World
  • 2018: Spirituality and Religion in Today's World 
  • 2019: Exploring Physical & Mental Health Issues in a Global Environment
  • 2020: Language & Communication Around the Globe
    • Fall 2020 Special Topic (Intersectionality Matters)