Hannah Arendt Center and Center for Civic Engagement present:
Why Privacy Matters
What Do We Lose When We Lose Our Privacy?
Thursday, October 15, 2015 – Friday, October 16, 2015
Author of The Repeal of Reticence: America's Cultural and Legal Struggles Over Free Speech, Obscenity, Sexual Liberation, and Modern Art.
American poet and writer. Lauterbach has published several poetry collections, such as Under the Sign. Lauterbach has also been the recipient of many awards, including but not limited to the MacArthur Fellowship and the Guggenheim Fellowship for Creative Arts.
Senior Fellow, Hannah Arendt Center; contributing writer, New York Times Magazine and Harper’s; writing also appears in New York Review of Books, GQ, and The New Yorker.
Uday Singh Mehta
Edward Snowden(Joining us via satellite) Former CIA employee. In 2013, he leaked classified information from the National Security Agency, which revealed global surveillance programs run by the U.S. and European governments. The U.S. Department of Justice has charged Snowden with violating the Espionage Act and theft of government property. He was granted a three year asylum in Russia and currently resides there. http://www.biography.com/people/edward-snowden-21262897#aftermath
Architect based in Amsterdam and teaches at the Faculty of Architecture of Delft University of Technology. He is currently working on a PhD on the public aspects of architecture. Recently he published, together with Johan van der Zwart Living Landscape: Manifesto for City and Country (2012). Teerds is a member of the editorial board of OASE Journal for Architecture.
Professor of Law at New York University. In 1978 he was admitted as a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of New Zealand. He has published widely on jurisprudence and political theory. His books include Dignity, Rank, and Rights (2012), Partly Laws Common to All Mankind: Foreign Law in American Courts (2012), The Harm of Hate Speech (2012), Torture, Terror, and Trade-offs: Philosophy for the White House (2010), Law and Disagreement (1999), and The Dignity of Legistlation (1999).
Thursday, October 15, 2015
10:00 AM Introduction: Why Privacy Matters
10:45 AM Will There Be Privacy in the Transparent Society?
Keynote Speaker: David Brin
Moderators: Roger Berkowitz & Anita Allen
Noon What Do We Lose When We Lose Our Privacy?
Moderator and Discussant: Jerome Kohn
1:15-2:30 PM Lunch Break
2:30 PM Are There Limits on Government Surveillance?
Frederick A.O. Schwarz Jr.
Moderator: Kathleen B. Jones
3:15 PM What Is Privacy on the Internet?
Moderator: Dean Hachamovitch
4:00 PM Is Privacy A (Necessary) Myth
Moderators: Sabrina Osmany
5:30 PM The Home as Public and Private
Moderator: Josh Cohen
6:30 PM Wine & Cheese Reception (Olin Atrium)
Friday, October 16, 2015
10:00 AM The Private Life of the Writer
Ann Lauterbach & Wyatt Mason
11:15 AM "The Privacy of the Self in a Culture of Exposure"
Moderator: Jennifer Hudson
Noon Secret Attacks on Privacy
Moderator: Peter Rosenblum
1:00-2:00 PM Lunch Break
2:00 PM Watched, Tracked, and Distracted: Can We Still Experience Solitude?
Moderator: Roger Berkowitz
3:00 PM Why Privacy Matters
Keynote Speaker: Edward Snowden (live from Russia)
Moderators: Peter Maass & Ann Lauterbach
4:45 PM Privacy and Surveillance: A Perspective from the Intelligence Community
Moderator: Scott Horton
5:30 PM Wine & Cheese Reception (Olin Atrium)
The Exalted, Friday October 16 (optional)
Guests are encouraged to attend the Live Arts Bard performance, The Exalted, at the Fisher Center for Performing Arts on Friday, Oct. 16th at 7:30pm following the conference. *Limited tickets are available. To learn more about the performance, click HERE. To purchase tickets, click HERE.
Bard and West Point: Pre-conference Debate Wednesday, October 14 (optional)
Date: Wednesday, October 14 at 7:00pm
Location: Campus Center, Multi Purpose Room
October 15-16 were thrilling days at Bard College, where we hosted our eighth annual conference. We will be posting edited video of the conference shortly. For now, you can watch unedited footage here.
Franklin W. Olin Humanities Building
35 Henderson Cir Dr
Annandale-On-Hudson, NY 12504
If you are driving, take Rt. 9G and enter onto campus using the entrance with the sign for Bard College across from Two Boots Pizza. After turning into Bard College, make a left at the Stop Sign, and Olin Hall will be on your right. Additionally, a security guard will be available at the Main Entrance to Bard College between 8:30 am and 11:00 am to assist drivers. Also, please check out Travel to Bard for more helpful hints.
Please click HERE to see venue map. The black objects represent Parking Lots.
Parking is free!
There will be a Student Opinion Contest in conjunction with The Hannah Arendt Center’s eighth annual fall conference "Why Privacy Matters." The author of the winning Response will receive $500 and have the response featured on the Hannah Arendt Center Blog. If appropriate, the response will also be printed in HA: The Journal of the Hannah Arendt Center.The Question:
Fundamental to the task of identifying privacy's importance is deciding what we even mean by privacy in an age of ubiquitous Internet access, government surveillance programs, and a national cultural mindset that emphasizes constant connectivity. With this in mind, The Hannah Arendt Center challenges students to think through and answer the following question: "Does Privacy Matter in the 21st century?"
1. All participants in this year's Thinking Challenge must currently be enrolled in a two- or four-year higher education institution (not open to graduate students).
2. Responses can be in the form of an essay (maximum 1,500 words), multimedia blog (maximum 1,500 words), video essays or GoAnimate projects (maximum 5 minutes), xtranormal animations (maximum 5 minutes), digital map, or other related formats. For an example of a video submission, please view the video shown below.
You can also view the entries of past Thinking Challenge winners here, here, and here.
3. Essays must incorporate quotations, video, or reactions from at least one talk or panel at the Hannah Arendt Center’s 2015 Conference “Why Privacy Matters.” Students may attend the conference live at Bard College or view the talks via live webcast from the Arendt Center website. The Conference, "Why Privacy Matters," will be held on Thursday and Friday, October 15-16, 2015.
Please email your completed entries to [email protected] by no later than noon on Monday, October 26th, 2015. Responses will be judged blindly by a panel of judges from the Arendt Center, including Roger Berkowitz, Wyatt Mason, Miriam Felton-Dansky. Winning responses should be bold, creative, and persuasive. If you have questions, please email David Bisson, our Media Coordinator, at [email protected]. Thank you, and good luck!
Mia Lotan: Mia is a sophomore at Bard College. She is an intended Art History major with a concentration in Bard's Experimental Humanities program. Lotan was a participant in Roger Berkowitz's course "Privacy: Why It Matters," which discussed the work and theory of many speakers of the Hannah Arendt 2015 fall conference. Mia's winning submission, an essay entitled "Community and the Self at the 2015 Hannah Arendt Center Conference," can be read here.
Ava Lindenmaier and Zelda May Bas
Ava is a Senior at Bard College pursuing a B.A. in Historical Studies. A participant in the inaugural semester of ‘Practice of Courage’ courses in the Courage To Be Program, she is thrilled to undertake the responsibilities entailed in the Student Fellowship. Most recently Ava has been working as a Graphic Design Intern for the Hannah Arendt Center and looks forward to working on more creative projects throughout the coming year. A summer spent traveling in Europe after her sophomore year was particularly influential upon her appreciation for and study of foreign languages. In her spare time Ava enjoys cooking, hiking and backgammon.
Zelda is a senior at Bard College, where she is pursuing a B.A. in Political Studies with a concentration in Global and International Affairs. Her senior thesis looks at the phenomenon of homelessness through the lenses of Hannah Arendt and to what extent it applies to the contemporary figure of the Syrian refugee. (Over her winter break, Zelda is volunteering in the Lebach refugee camp in Germany, where she is also conducting interviews with refugees.) After graduation, she plans to attend the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom and pursue a Masters of Arts in Contemporary Identities within the School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies.
Ava and Zelda's winning submission, a short film entitled "What Does Privacy Feel Like?," can be viewed here. You can also read the two filmmakers' personal statements here.
Matthew Balik - Honorable Mention. Matthew is a Junior at Bard College and a Written Arts major. Originally hailing from northern New Jersey, he is interested in short fiction. Matthew currently interns at Conjunctions, a literary journal based at Bard College, and is acting as one of the editors of a new student-run art publication on campus, Ingenue. After Bard, he hopes to advance his professional career in editorial and/or publishing work. Matthew's honorably mentioned submission, an essay entitled "The Importance of Solitude for the Artist," can be read here.
Dina Toubasi - Honorable Mention. Dina is a sophomore at Bard who is pursuing a multidisciplinary major involving economics, philosophy, and literature. She was born and raised in the West Bank, Palestine. In the summer of 2014, she came to the United States for the first time to begin her college studies. Dina enjoys academic writing, both in English and in Arabic (her native tongue), and she hopes to eventually pursue a writing-centered career. Additionally, she loves traveling and is beginning to believe that it should be a human right. Dina's honorably mentioned submission, an essay entitled "Privacy and Sex Regulation Administration," can be read here.
Recommended Readings by Hannah Arendt
Hannah Arendt, On Revolution (Chapter II The Social Question Part IV)
Hannah Arendt, The Human Condition (Chapter II The Public and the Private Realm)
Hannah Arendt, The Crisis in Education (Part III)
Recommended Readings by our Speakers
Anita Allen, Unpopular Privacy: What Must We Hide
David Brin, The Transparent Society: Will Technology Force Us to Choose Between Freedom and Privacy?
Josh Cohen, The Private Life: Why We Remain in the Dark
Glenn Greenwald, No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, The NSA and the US Surveillance State
Rochelle Gurstein, The Repeal of Reticence: America's Cultural and Legal Struggles Over Free Speech, Obscenity, Sexual Liberation, and Modern Art
Fredrick A.O. Schwarz Jr,. Democracy in the Dark: The Seduction of Government Security
Jeremy Waldron, Safety and Security
Recommended Readings on Privacy
William Faulkner, On Privacy: The American Dream, What Happened To It
Henry James, The Private Life
Alan F. Westin, Privacy and Freedom
DebateDate: Wednesday, October 14
Location: Campus Center, MPR
Public Debate: Is national security more important than the individual right to privacy? Bard and West Point. Please join us for an exciting public debate inspired by the topic of this year's Hannah Arendt Center Conference, "Why Privacy Matters." The debate will feature Bard Debate Union members, Bard College faculty, and cadets and faculty from the United States Military Academy at West Point. Their topic will be, "Is National Security More Important Than Individual Right To Privacy." Sponsored by the Hannah Arendt Center, Center for Civic Engagement, Bard Debate Union, West Point Military Academy, and the International Debate Education Association. Co-Sponsored by the Hannah Arendt Center, the Bard Debate Union, the Center for Civic Engagement, and the Bard-West Point Exchange.
Free & Open to the Public
Questions: [email protected]
Conference Press Release
IEET Fellow David Brin Named 2015 NEH Visiting Fellow at Bard College
IEET Fellow David Brin has been named the first annual National Endowment for the Humanities/Hannah Arendt Center Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. David will be in residence at the Hannah Arendt Center at Bard College from Monday, October 5, to Sunday, October 25. As part of David’s fellowship, he will mentor selected Bard students on their fiction and nonfiction writing. Brin will also offer a number of lectures and discussions during his residency at Bard. Read the full article here.
WAMC Northeast Public Radio
“Why Privacy Matters” conference at Bard to feature Skyped-in Edward Snowden
The play of darkness and light – the critical need for both – was rarely more eloquently described than in the writings of political philosopher Hannah Arendt. Arendt is best-known as a chronicler of a specific sort of darkness. Reporting for The New Yorker, she witnessed the trial of Adolph Eichmann, the man whose darkness she famously characterized as embodying “the banality of evil.” Read more here.
Privacy exists now more than ever, except with 'unique' tech challenge
While there increasingly seems to be a war on privacy, with the National Security Agency (NSA) spying on American citizens both domestically and abroad and big data providing endless information on consumers to corporations, in actuality, society might enjoy a greater degree of privacy now than ever before. Read more here.
Privacy, secrecy and surveillance on deck at Bard conference
Floating what he called a test case, New York University School of Law Professor Jeremy Waldron led a thought-provoking talk on privacy, secrecy and surveillance at the “Why Privacy Matters: What Do We Lose When We Lose Our Privacy?” conference held by the Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities at Bard College. Read more here.
Snowden lashes out at US government for keeping drone program secret
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y — National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden and one of the top lawyers for the U.S. Intelligence Community, Robert Litt, gave back-to-back speeches at an academic gathering on Friday that addressed major controversies over government surveillance, basic privacy protections and the freedom of information. Read more here.
Edward Snowden: Clinton made 'false claim' about whistleblower protection
Edward Snowden has accused Hillary Clinton of “a lack of political courage” for her assertion during the Democratic presidential debate this week that the whistleblower had bypassed options for disclosing illegal government spying programs that would have protected him and not violated the law. Read more here.
Snowden Says Hillary Clinton’s Bogus Statements Show a “Lack of Political Courage”
Hillary Clinton twice this week has insisted, contrary to the facts, that former NSA contractor Edward Snowden could have accomplished his goals and avoided punishment if he’d raised his concerns through the proper channels. Read more here.
Snowden keynote at Bard conference stresses privacy
“Privacy isn't about something to hide, it's about something to lose,” Edward Snowden told attendees at the “Why Privacy Matters: What Do We Lose When We Lose Our Privacy?” conference hosted by the Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities at Bard College. Read more here.
National Intelligence counsel favors tossing Espionage Act
The Second General Counsel of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence said Friday it was time to “throw out” the so-called Espionage Act in favor of more modernized laws to deal with whistleblowers and other emerging security issues. Read more here.
Snowden espouses about data ethics and privacy
Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y. -- In the aftermath of Edward Snowden’s controversial leaks that revealed widespread US surveillance and data gathering, researchers, scholars, lawyers, and privacy advocates gathered at the Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities at Bard College to engage in conversations about privacy and data ethics. Read more here.
The Poet, the Journalist, and the Dissident
“I never thought that I would be Big Brother,” jokes Snowden as he is lowered down from the cloud and on to a projector screen. The crowd greets him like a rock star. He looks sheepish, perhaps overcome by the fervor of an audience in a country that he has no possibility of returning to under the present circumstances. On the stage to greet him is poet Ann Lauterbach and the Intercept’s Peter Maass. The dissident, the poet, and the journalist engaged in discussion at the penultimate talk of Bard College’s “Why Privacy Matters” conference held in October in the spirit of the college’s matron philosopher Hannah Arendt. Read more here.
"Is National Security More Important Than Individual Right To Privacy?" A Student Debate
When the Bard College Debate Union and the United States Military Academy at West Point Debate Society tackled the question: "Is National Security More Important Than Individual Right To Privacy," both affirmative and negative sides delivered compelling, well-researched, and often surprising answers. Read more here.
Edward Snowden as Socrates?
EDWARD SNOWDEN has been described as a “troublemaker” and a “traitor to the state.” In some ways, the former NSA contractor, who leaked classified documents in June 2013, has adopted the posture of a fearless, lone Socrates. Hopefully, he will not endure the same fate as the ancient “corrupter of youth.” Change — even if it will come slowly — seems afoot. Read more here.
Please Join Us for Our Annual Fall Conference!
Please Join Us for Our Annual Fall Conference! from Hannah Arendt Center on Vimeo.
Reading on Kindles, searching Google, and using cell phones, we leave a data trail of intimate details. Governments and businesses track our comings, goings, and doings. Scott McNealy, former CEO of Sun Microsystems, speaks for many when he says, “You have zero privacy anyway. Get over it.” It is easy to note the violence of the slogan “if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear,” but few offer an intelligent response. Why do we willfully participate in the loss of our privacy? How is it that we rarely register its loss? Do we simply value privacy less? It is time to ask why privacy matters?
Hannah Arendt saw the private realm as the essential refuge for human uniqueness. In daily life, she writes, we “return back from the outside world and withdraw into the security of private life within four walls.” These walls of the private “enclose a secure place, without which no living thing can thrive.” For Arendt, “Everything that lives, not vegetative life alone, emerges from darkness and, however strong its natural tendency to thrust itself into the light, it nevertheless needs the security of darkness to grow at all.” Privacy guards the dark recesses of the human heart.What is lost when the dark recesses of the heart are exposed to the light of public censure? Love grows in secret and loyalty trumps formal rules of fairness. We all transgress taboos and even a few laws. Yet, when we are forced to police private urges and actions by public standards, our belief in public morality appears hypocritical. Distrusting ourselves, we trust no one, which is the source of cynicism of political life. It is amidst a sense that privacy is being lost and we are powerless to resist that loss that the Hannah Arendt Center at Bard College will host our 8th Annual Conference, “Why Privacy Matters” Our conference will consider the following questions:
- Does our loss of control over our data impact our inner lives?
- Is freedom possible in world without privacy?
- When indiscretions are knowable, who will have the courage to enter public life?
- Can we hold government and business accountable for their use of private data?
- Why is government becoming more secret as individuals embrace transparency?
- Do we have a meaningful right to be left alone?