Liberal Arts Speaker Series

The purpose of the Liberal Arts Speaker Series is to promote the values, principles, and benefits of a liberal arts* education by introducing and exploring important, historic, and provocative topics, ideas, and perspectives from the liberal arts disciplines. It also aims to foster critical thinking by engaging Gordon State students, faculty, staff—and the broader community at large—in discussion and debate about those subjects.

Students: This speaker series is for you! Gordon State College wishes to provide you opportunities to explore new concepts that will broaden your understanding of the world. As a liberal arts college, Gordon State provides the Highlander EDGE by preparing students to be Engaged Innovators, Dedicated Scholars, Gifted Communicators, and Ethical Leaders. This series will feature a wide range of speakers and topics that will help facilitate your adaptation to many different jobs, not just one.

Faculty/Staff/Non-GSC members: If you would like to present at a future Liberal Arts Speaker Series event, please send a detailed description of your proposed topic, along with a title, to Dr. Barry Kicklighter at for consideration by the LASS committee. The current stipend for the 20-21 Speaker Series is $200 per presentation.

Submission Deadlines:

  • Spring - November 1st
  • Fall – April 1st

Future Presentations: 

  • September 28, 2021 at 6:00 pm - "Health Equity and Women's Health Issues." Women encounter multiple issues that place them at increased risk of developing health problems.  Health inequity and social determinants are among the contributory factors. This seminar stimulates dialogue and inquiry on selected topics relating to health equity, health inequity, and women’s health issues from a local, state, national, and global perspective. After a brief overview, the discussion focuses on how these factors intersect and ultimately result in women’s health issues. The session concludes with a dialogue on equity as a strategy to reduce and mitigate factors that contribute to the development of health problems in women. 

Past presentations:

  • May 3, 2021 at 6:00 pm on Zoom – “This Machine Kills __________: A Musical Fight for Equality: An examination of the cultural & aesthetic power of the protest song.” Presented by Dr. David Janssen and Dr. Brian Webb.
Protest Song
  • April 12, 2021 at 6:00 pm on Zoom - “Why does Shakespeare still capture our imagination after more than four hundred years?” with Tony Pearson and Lisa Ferguson. (Click here for video).


  • March 8, 2021 @ 6:00 pm - "What is a Cult? A Philosophical Examination of Religion and American Cultism" with Jenna Thrasher-Sneathen. (Click here for video link)
  • What is a Cult?

  • November 17, 2020 @ 5:30 pm - O death, where is thy sting? A look at the historical, cultural, and literary explanations of death (Click here for video link).
  • September 28, 2020 - Remembering 9/11 (Click here for video link) Passcode must be manually typed in: %+5uTUI$

*The difference between Liberalism & Liberal Arts
Liberalism is a “political philosophy based on belief in progress, the essential goodness of the human race, and the autonomy of the individual and standing for the protection of political and civil liberties.” ( The term liberal arts is defined as “college or university studies (such as language, philosophy, literature, abstract science) intended to provide chiefly general knowledge and to develop general intellectual capacities (such as reason and judgment) as opposed to professional or vocational skills.” (