Sunday, May 16, 2010

Keynote Speakers Announced for 2010

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Third International Conference on Argumentation, Rhetoric, Debate and the Pedagogy of Empowerment -- THINKING AND SPEAKING A BETTER WORLD.

Two previous conferences have been held, one in Koper and the other in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The third conference is planned for October 22-23-24, 2010. The conference will be hosted at the Department of Philosophy, Faculty of Arts, University of Maribor,


RASTKO MOCNIK - Teaches Theory of Discourse and Epistemology of the Humanities at the Faculty of Philosophy, University of Ljubljana. Graduated from the University of Ljubljana in Sociology and Comparative Literature in 1968. Studied semiotics from 1969 – 1975 at l’Ecole pratique des hautes etudes, later École des hautes études en sciences sociales (Paris), with Algirdas J. Greimas. Obtained doctorat du troisième cycle in linguistics - literary semiotics at the Université de Paris X (Nanterre). In 1983, doctorate in sociology from the University of Ljubljana. Post-doctoral Fulbright fellow at the Department of Philosophy, University of California at Berkeley,1985. 1987-89 vice-rector of the University of Ljubljana - as the result of a campaign which led to the first fair and open election of the University leadership under the regime of the time. Recent publications: Altercations - essays on "totalitarianism”, the "alternative”, nationalism; Belgrade, 1998 - in Serbian; How Much Fascism? - essays on post-communist politics; Zagreb, 1998 - in Croatian; Theory for Our Times. Levi-Strauss, Mauss, Durkheim - a study in three retroactive movements; Skopje, 1999 - in Macedonian; Three Theories - Ideology, Nation, Institution - a rationalised presentation of respective theories and their mutual articulation, *cf., Ljubljana, 1999 - in Slovene; Encounters: histories, transitions, beliefs – essays on the theory of institution, nation, media, contemporary speech-practices, artistic practices and film; Sofia, 2001 – in Bulgarian.

SAM GREENLAND - Currently President of the World Universities Debating Council. Sam has debated for Oxford and has also been a successful schools coach, directing the Hong Kong team at numerous World Schools Debating Championships. Recently he has been representing the University of Sydney Union in competitions, and reaching the WUDC semifinals among other advanced elimination rounds. He has been very active in creating the standards for non-native speakers to participate in international tournaments such as the WUDC. Sam has also been working on now debate can be used as a tool for teaching English and how debating improves the overall academic performance of students.

DEBBIE NEWMAN - Has experience of teaching debate around the world at all levels. She is now focused on using debating and other active techniques to improve classroom methods. She is a previous English national debating champion, president of the Cambridge Union Society and world champion schools debate coach. She has been on the faculty of the World Debate Institute, IDAS and the UK Debate Academy and is a former Head of the Centre for Speech and Debate at the English-Speaking Union in London. Although Debbie is an experienced university trainer, her focus is on schools debating: both working with children, from 8-18, and also working with teachers to help build their skills and confidence in training and judging debate. Training is always tailored to meet the needs of the hosts and will aim to be both challenging and enjoyable. Whether beginners learning the skills of debating for the first time, or the more experienced looking to hone their talents, all students and teachers will develop their abilities in a supportive and positive environment.

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