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Sochi Provides Backdrop for Davidson Panel on Social Issues in Russia

Davidson College invites the public to a panel discussion Thursday, Jan. 23, about gender, ethics and sports in Russia. The event, titled "Sochi 2014: Gender, Ethics and Sport," will begin at 4:30 p.m. in the Alvarez College Union Sprinkle Room, and there is no charge to attend.

The panel will be moderated by Irina Erman, Visiting Assistant Professor of Russian Studies at Davidson. She commented, "The Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia, have attracted attention to Vladimir Putin's crackdown on political protests and the LGBTQ community. Some Western observers have even suggested a boycott of this year's Games to protest Putin's recently enacted law prohibiting ‘homosexual propaganda' to minors."

She continued, "However, issues of politics, gender and protest in Russia aren't unique to this year's Olympics, and are well-worth examining in a larger context. Sochi offers us an appropriate occasion to reflect on these issues."

Panelists will be Eliot Borenstein, Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies at New York University, Gayle Kaufman, Professor of Sociology at Davidson, Sean McKeever, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Davidson, and Dick Cooke, head baseball coach at Davidson who has helped coach American teams at previous Olympics.

The panel discussion is sponsored by the Davidson College departments of Russian Studies, Sociology, and Philosophy, the Gender and Sexuality Studies Program, the Dean Rusk International Studies Program and the Vann Center for Ethics.

The 2014 Winter Olympic Games will be held Feb. 7-23.

For more information call 704-894-2884.