Fleer Lecture Slated for March 27

Jiang.jpgThe 2024 Fleer Lecture at Central Methodist University will take place at 7 p.m. on March 27, with Dr. Tao Jiang speaking on “Zhuangzi and the Tragedy of Personal Freedom in Chinese History.” The lecture will be held in the Inman Lecture Hall (Stedman 200).

Jiang is a professor of religion and philosophy at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey, with a joint appointment in the Religion Department and the Philosophy Department. He specializes in Chinese philosophy and Mahāyāna Buddhist Philosophy.

Jiang’s book, Origins of Moral-Political Philosophy in Early China (2021, Oxford University Press), received the 2023 Joseph Levinson Prize honorable mention from the Association for Asian Studies. Jiang is also the director of the Rutgers Center for Chinese Studies and co-chair of the Neo-Confucian Studies Seminar at Columbia University.

About the lecture series

Former faculty member and sponsor of Alpha Phi Gamma (MOKERS), Dr. Gilbert “Gil” Fleer ’55 and his wife, Ruth Hombs Fleer ’58, had a vision to enhance the spirit of excellence at CMU. Their passion for their alma mater and the love of their son, Jeffrey, led them to make gifts to the University in hopes of enriching the Central experience for students for generations to come.

Gil Fleer was an assistant professor of religion at Central from 1959-65. Before his passing, Dr. Fleer was a social science professor at Western Texas College and a United Methodist counselor. He spent many years counseling young adults in unconventional settings.

The couple’s strong support of leadership training led them to fund the Gil and Ruth Fleer Fund for Excellence in Values-Based Education at CMU. The lecture is funded by the generosity of Gil and Ruth Fleer.

For those unable to attend the lecture in person, a livestream will be provided here: https://centralmethodist.zoom.us/j/99757179185.

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