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Hannah Arendt Center presents

"The Unmaking of Americans: Are There Still American Values Worth Fighting For?"

The Seventh Annual Hannah Arendt Center Conference

Thursday, October 9, 2014 – Friday, October 10, 2014

America has long imagined itself a “city upon a hill.” Yet, we confront today a weakening of our collective vision. Americans are dismayed at the power of money, the decay of self-governance, and a bureaucracy impervious to popular control. And yet few dare to articulate a collective vision that might hold the country together. As Hannah Arendt argued nearly 50 years ago, “we face the ominous silence that answers us whenever we ask: 'What are we fighting for?'"

In the United States of America, there has long been an assumption that we had an answer to Arendt's question. We fight for freedom and democracy. We fight for equality and difference. Above all we fight for "a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal."

Not only in America, but around the world, we confront a weakening of such political visions. In America, the ideals of freedom, equality, and a common destiny that have are in decline. On both the left and the right there is fear the country has lost its way. To explore the future of an American idea, we will sponsor "The Unmaking of Americans: Are There Still American Values Worth Fighting For?"

Admission is complimentary for Hannah Arendt Center members, Bard College faculty and staff, and students. Regular admission for the two-day conference is $20 per person. To view a full conference schedule, bios of featured speakers, and to register for the conference, please visit

Time: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm

Location: Olin Hall