Prominent medical anthropologist, physician Paul Farmer to speak to first-year students in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences
Prominent medical anthropologist, physician Paul Farmer to speak to first-year students in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and SciencesSeptember 14, 2007Kelly Homan Rodoskikahoman@syr.edu
Paul Farmer, an anthropologist and physician who helped to found Partners in Health (PIH) to address the AIDS crisis in Haiti, will deliver the annual Laura J. Hanhausen Milton Freshman Lecture to first-year students in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences on Wednesday, Sept. 26.
The lecture, “Global Health Equity: An Evening with Paul Farmer,” is also an event of the 2007 Syracuse Symposium, hosted by The College of Arts and Sciences, which is focusing on “justice” this year. The lecture, which is open only to first-year students, will take place at 7:30 p.m. in Goldstein Auditorium in the Hildegarde and J. Myer Schine Student Center. The public may view a live simulcast of the lecture in Stolkin Auditorium in the Physics Building, and a webcast of the lecture at http://symposium.syr.edu will be available on computers connected to the SU network.
Farmer, who is also the Presley Professor of Medical Anthropology at Harvard Medical School, is the subject of Pulitzer Prize winner Tracy Kidder’s biography “Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Would Cure the World” (Random House, 2004). The book was chosen as this year’s shared summer reading for SU’s incoming first-year students, as well as the 2007-08 reading for Central New York Reads, a consortium of area libraries and schools. Kidder will be a guest of SU’s University Lectures series on Nov. 6.
Farmer has written extensively about health and human rights, and about the role of social inequalities in the distribution and outcome of infectious diseases. He is the author of more than 100 articles, in addition to the books “Pathologies of Power” (University of California Press, 2003), “Infections and Inequalities” (University of California Press, 1998), “The Uses of Haiti” (Common Courage Press, 1994) and “AIDS and Accusation” (University of California Press, 1992).
Farmer is responsible for organizing PIH, an international charity organization that provides direct health care services and undertakes research and advocacy activities on behalf of those who are sick and living in poverty. Founded in 1987, PIH had an initial focus on Haiti, where Farmer conducted dissertation research that resulted in “AIDS and Accusation.” PIH currently has programs throughout the world, with new clinics opening in Lesotho, Malawi and Rwanda, in addition to those in Haiti and Peru.
In the past decade, Farmer has turned his attention to tuberculosis. He has participated in evaluations of TB treatment programs in Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Peru and Russia, with special interest in TB among prison populations. In addition, PIH’s education and advocacy arm, the Institute for Health and Social Justice, has launched a campaign to galvanize knowledge, awareness and action to combat pandemic co-infections of hunger, malnutrition and disease.
Among Farmer’s many recent awards are the Duke University Humanitarian Award, the Margaret Mead Award from the American Anthropological Association and the American Medical Association’s International Physician (Nathan Davis) Award. He was awarded the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation “Genius Award” in 1993 and the Heinz Award for the Human Condition a decade later.
The Milton Freshman Lecture of the First Year Forum program brings a speaker of international stature to campus each fall to address the entering class of The College of Arts and Sciences. The program was established by a gift from Jack ’51 and Laura Milton ’51 in 1999. In 2000, the Miltons established the Laura Hanhausen Milton Freshman Lecture Endowment, enabling the college to invite world-renowned scholars and writers.
The Syracuse Symposium is a semester-long intellectual and artistic festival, hosted by SU’s College of Arts and Sciences, that celebrates interdisciplinary thinking, imagination and creation. The theme for the 2007 series is “Justice.”