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What’s in a Name?: Renaming at Stanford

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Join our panelists as they discuss the renaming process at Stanford, a fraught subject not only on campus but throughout the country.

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NOTE: This panel presentation will be preceded by the Stanford Historical Society Annual Members’ Meeting at 4:15 - 4:30 p.m.

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  • SHS Annual Members' Meeting 4:15 - 4:30 p.m.
  • Panel Presentation 4:30 - 6:00 p.m.

The Stanford Historical Society tackles a difficult but appropriate question that many institutions (universities, city governments, and school districts) are facing: Why and how should the names of buildings, centers, streets and monuments be removed and, if so, what names should replace them? Rather than cancelling history, the question forces us to look more carefully into our past. In this panel discussion, law professor Bernadette Meyler, who chaired the University’s Advisory Committee on Renaming Jordan Hall and Removing the Statue of Louis Agassiz, will share how the process has worked recently at Stanford, including arguments both for and against renaming. Professor Meyler will be joined in conversation by Karen Biestman, Associate Dean and Director of the Stanford Native American Cultural Center and Lecturer in Native American Studies, who will speak about the Father Serra Renaming experience and Grant Parker, Associate Professor of Classics, who will speak from the perspective of similar issues in South Africa.

*If you would like to request any disability-related accommodations including close captioning, please contact the Stanford Historical Society by email at historicalsociety@stanford.edu before April 30, 2021.

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