Comm’s Carpenter Debates at Oxford
From University Relations:
Western Illinois University Department of Communication Assistant Professor Chris Carpenter was invited to debate at the Oxford Union Society in England in May. Carpenter, who has done extensive research on social media issues, was invited to speak on the motion, “This House Believes Social Media has Successfully Reinvented Social Activism.”
The Oxford Union, which holds no political views, has been called the “world’s most prestigious debating society” with a reputation for bringing international guests and speakers to Oxford. The society was established 189 years ago to promote debate and discussion at both Oxford University and around the world.
“It went very well,” Carpenter said of his trip. “There were seven speakers and each side took turns speaking. I talked about the communication research on social media and social activism.” The research and the debate included the premise that social media can work for and against activists, such as in Iran, Egypt and Syria. “This was one of the most fun things I have ever done,” Carpenter said of the debate. “It was definitely a culmination of years of debate practice; it was the Olympics of debate for me. It was very rewarding and I had a good time talking to the other debaters.”