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2017 Fall: 70th Annual Borah Symposium

This year’s Borah Symposium, a program devoted to understanding the causes of war and the conditions for establishing a lasting peace, is Oct. 16-17 on the University of Idaho campus. The annual event moves to the fall this year as it celebrates its 70th anniversary.

“This 70th anniversary Borah Symposium provides an opportunity for people to grow a hopeful perspective on the prospects for peace leadership in an increasingly tense world,” said Steven Daley-Laursen, co-chair of the Borah Committee. “We can be inspired by historical partnerships that launched an international effort to outlaw war, and by emerging leaders and leadership process for peace in our future.”

The symposium begins with the keynote address, “The Role of Women in World Peace,” by Nobel Peace Prize winner and human rights activist Shirin Ebadi at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 16 in the International Ballroom in the Bruce M. Pitman Center.

Ebadi is a former chief magistrate of 26th Divisional Court in Tehran. In 1979, immediately after the Islamic revolution in Iran, all female judges were dismissed as the then-revolutionaries believed that women were forbidden from passing judgment. She was demoted to the post of a magistrate's clerk in the very same court over which she once presided. Soon after, she opted for early retirement and became a defense lawyer for many controversial political and human rights cases in Iran. Ebadi won the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize for her work.

The symposium continues on Tuesday, Oct. 17, with a presentation by Leroy Ashby, a Regents professor emeritus at Washington State University and biographer of William E. Borah. Ashby will present the “The Life and Times of William Edgar Borah” at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday in the International Ballroom.

The symposium concludes with the presentation “The Internationalists: How a Radical Plan to Outlaw War Remade the World” by Scott Shapiro, the Charles F. Southmayd professor of law and professor of philosophy at Yale Law School. Shapiro and his colleague Oona Hathaway recently published the New York Times bestseller of the same title, which offers a history of international law as it has evolved from the 17th century through the present. The presentation is at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the International Ballroom.

All events are free and open to the public.

The 70th anniversary of the Borah Symposium is sponsored by the William Edgar Borah Outlawry of War Foundation, a separately endowed foundation operated out of the UI’s Martin Institute in the College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences. 

Schedule of Events, Fall 2017

Monday, October 16 at 7 p.m.

  • Keynote Address: “The Role of Women in World Peace”
  • Location: International Ballroom, Bruce Pitman Center
  • Presented by Nobel Laureate Shirin Ebadi

Tuesday, October 17 at 12:30 p.m. 

  • “The Life and Times of William Edgar Borah”
  • Location: International Ballroom, Pitman Center
  • Presented by Professor LeRoy Ashby in partnership with the Renfrew Colloquium

Tuesday, October 17 at 7 p.m.

  • “The Internationalists: How a Radical Plan to Outlaw War Remade the World”
  • Location: International Ballroom, Bruce Pitman Center
  • Presented by Professor Scott Shapiro
  • The first 100 adults will receive a copy of the book The Internationalists, by Shapiro and Oona Hathaway

Borah Symposium

Physical Address:
338 Administration Building

Mailing Address:
Borah Foundation & Symposium
c/o The Martin Institute
University of Idaho
875 Perimeter Drive MS 3177
Moscow, ID 83844-3177

Phone: 208-885-6527

Fax: 208-885-9464