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Hutton Honors College

 — Indiana University

"Living (and Dying) for Ideas"

Undergraduate Discussion Supper with Costica Bradatan, Distinguished Guest Fellow, University of Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study

Monday, Nov. 12, 6-7:30 p.m.
Hutton Honors College Great Room (811 E. Seventh St.)
SIGN-UP REQUIRED: See details below

Are there circumstances in which the only way to convey an idea powerfully, persuasively is to die for it? Can a dramatic death spark change? Philosopher Costica Bradatan has written that the decision by a young Tunisian street vendor to set himself on fire in 2010 ignited the Arab Spring but notes as well that since 2009 close to 50 Tibetans have done the same to protest Chinese rule of Tibet without a change in the political circumstances of Tibet. What drives someone to such an act? What consequences can be expected? Do such acts have anything in common with suicide bombings? With risking one's life in war? What roles do religion, culture, and philosophy play in the exercise of such choices? Come to the HHC for a supper with Costica Bradatan to talk about his work on "dying (and living) for ideas."

Bradatan is an associate professor in the Honors College at Texas Tech University and a Distinguished Guest Fellow at the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study. His areas of expertise and teaching include history of philosophy, philosophy of religion, philosophy of literature and philosophy of film, with a special emphasis on the performative aspects of philosophizing ("philosophy as a way of life," "self-creation," "dying for an idea"), the literariness of philosophical texts, as well as the role played by the religious, cultural and intellectual contexts in their production. He has written or edited seven books, and is currently working on a book on philosophical martyrdom, Dying for Ideas: The Dangerous Lives of the Philosophers. His book reviews, essays, and op-eds can be found in the New York Times, (CNN Opinion), Dissent, Christian Science Monitor, The New Statesman, Los Angeles Review of Books, Times Literary Supplement, The Australian, and other such venues. Over the past decade Bradatan has received grants from, or held visiting appointments at, Istituto Italiano di Scienze Umane (Italy), UniversitÓ degli Studi di Firenze (Italy), Trinity College Dublin (Ireland), University of Texas-Austin, the Newberry Library (Chicago), Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (Washington DC), Bogliasco Foundation (Genoa, Italy) and the University of California at Los Angeles. He has taught at universities in Europe (United Kingdom, Germany, Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania) and Asia (India and Turkey). For more information about Bradatan and his work, check out these links:,, and His article, "The Political Psychology of Self-immolation," published in the New Statesman, can be found here.

SIGN-UP INFO: If you are interested in attending this event, please check your schedule to make sure you are available for the entire event and e-mail Anna Duquaine (, indicating you wish to sign up for the "Bradatan Supper" and include your name, e-mail address, year in school, and field(s) of study. Space is limited so we will let you know by e-mail if a space was available when you replied.

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