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Hutton Honors College

 — Indiana University

"Living (and Dying) for Ideas"
Discussion Supper with Costica Bradatan

November 12, 2012

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? Students came to the HHC for a supper with Costica Bradatan and discussed his work on "dying (and living) for ideas."

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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? These are some of the questions that philosopher Costica Bradatan is trying to answer.

Bradatan showed guests a short video about the Tibetan protests against Chinese rule of Tibet that sparked many questions from students.

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.

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