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MARCH 4 - GameChanger Ideas Festival Event with Deva Woodly

Does social unrest help or hurt our democracy?

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Deva R. Woodly, PhD is an Associate Professor of Politics at the New School who holds a PhD from the University of Chicago. She is the author of The Politics of Common Sense: How Social Movements Use Public Discourse to Change Politics and Win Acceptance (Oxford 2015). She has also held fellowships at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton as well as the Edmund J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard. Her research covers a variety of topics, from media & communication, to political understandings of economics, to race & imagination, & social movements. In each case, she focuses on the impacts of public discourse on the political understandings of social and economic issues as well as how those common understandings change democratic practice and public policy. Her process of inquiry is inductive, moving from concrete, real-world conditions to the conceptual implications of those realities. In all cases, she centers the perspective of ordinary citizens and political challengers with an eye toward how the demos impacts political action and shapes political possibilities. Her current book projects are Reckoning:  #BlackLivesMatter and the Democratic Necessity of Social Movements, an examination of the ways that social movements re-politicize public life in times of political despair and What We Talk About When We Talk About the Economy, a broad investigation of American economic discourse and its implications for politics and policy in the post-Great Recession era.

Moderator Erica Thunder was appointed North Dakota Labor Commissioner by Gov. Doug Burgum, effective June 3, 2019.

As Labor Commissioner, Thunder leads the North Dakota Department of Labor and Human Rights, which is responsible for enforcing the state’s labor and human rights laws and for educating the public about the laws. The department also licenses employment agencies operating in the state and can verify the status of independent contractor relationships.

Thunder previously served as judicial systems administrator for the North Dakota Indian Affairs Commission, working to improve relationships with state, tribal and federal agencies in a wide range of areas. She also played a key role in the Commission’s substantial progress in strengthening tribal partnerships, one of the Burgum-Sanford administration’s five strategic initiatives.

Thunder earned a bachelor’s degree in political science in 2011 from the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks. She received her law degree and Indian law certificate in 2014 from the UND School of Law, where she was vice president of the Criminal Law Association and secretary of the Student Bar Association.

Prior to joining the Indian Affairs Commission, Thunder served the Ho-Chunk Nation in Wisconsin as a staff attorney and project facilitator for its Department of Social Services. She also served as a staff attorney for the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation in western North Dakota, where she is an enrolled member.

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HND Disclaimer and Value Statement

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this {article, book, exhibition, film, program, database, report, Web resource}, do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities or Humanities North Dakota.

However, in an increasingly polarized world, we at Humanities North Dakota believe that being open-minded is necessary to thinking critically and rationally.

Therefore, our programs and classes reflect our own open-mindedness in the inquiry, seeking, and acquiring of scholars to speak at our events and teach classes for our Public University.

To that end, we encourage our participants to join us in stepping outside our comfort zones and considering other perspectives and ideas by being open-minded while attending HND events featuring scholars who hold a variety of opinions, some being opposite of our own held beliefs.

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