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Tawakkol Karman eyes justice, freedom, democracy in lecture

Tawakkol Karman

Following President Andy Armacost’s declaration that 2023 would be a year of “connection” for UND, it’s appropriate that last Thursday’s Eye of the Hawk lecture was delivered by a woman whose efforts to organize people through nonviolent protests during the Arab Spring changed the history of Yemen.

Armacost introduced Tawakkol Karman, a journalist, politician, Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and the “mother of the revolution,” to the stage in the nearly full Memorial Union ballroom. Karman’s lecture, aptly titled “Tyranny and the Future of Democracy,” was focused on authoritarian threats to democracy around the world and the repercussions that tyranny can have.

Now in its seventh year, the lecture series was conceived by former UND President Mark Kennedy to bring national and world-class thinkers, speakers, and leaders to UND. Kennedy named the series after a piece of Arthurian lore in which Merlin transformed Arthur into a hawk to gain a new perspective, hoping to expand the minds of the UND community in a similar way.

Throughout the 30-minute speech, Karman, the first Arab woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, covered topics such as resource inequality, climate change, human rights, and the increasing challenges of globalization. All of these were addressed with an appropriate level of graveness while remaining optimistic about the global defense of democracy and equality.

For the full story, read it at UND Today.