This fall SUNY Fredonia will welcome Dr. Jean Kilbourne, an author, speaker and filmmaker who is internationally recognized for her work on the image of women in advertising and her critique of alcohol and tobacco advertising and its impact on today's youth.
Dr. Kilbourne, who is also credited with introducing the idea of promoting media literacy as a way to prevent problems she views as originating from mass media advertising campaigns, will deliver SUNY Fredonia's 2012 Maytum Convocation Lecture on Sept. 19 in King Concert Hall.
Her appearance kicks off the year-long theme, "A Time for Change: Shifting Paradigms, Creating Possibilities."
Dr. Jean Kilbourne, an author, speaker and filmmaker who is known worldwide for her research on the image of women in advertising, will deliver the 2012 Maytum Convocation Lecture on Sept. 19, kicking off the college’s 2012-13 theme, “A Time for Change: Shifting Paradigms, Creating Possibilities.”
Kilbourne's films, lectures and television appearances have been seen by millions of people throughout the world.
She is perhaps best known for the films that are based on her lectures, including, "Killing Us Softly," which chronicles how advertising depicts women over a 20-year span. Other Kilbourne films include, "Slim Hopes: Advertising and the Obsession with Thinness," and "Pack of Lies: The Advertising of Tobacco."
Kilbourne also authored the book, "Can't Buy My Love: How Advertising Changes the Way We Think and Feel," in which she discussed advertising's effects on gender roles, alcohol and substance addiction, relationships, violence, and the objectification of women and men.
That won the 1999 Distinguished Publication Award from the Association for Women in Psychology, while Publishers Weekly called it "a profound work that is required reading for informed consumers."
She also joined Diane E. Levin in co-authoring, "So Sexy So Soon: The New Sexualized Childhood and What Parents Can Do to Protect Their Kids."
"Once again, our committee has worked hard to ensure that the keynote speaker is widely applicable to a variety of academic disciplines and student interests," Convocation Committee Chair Jack Croxton, a member of Fredonia's Psychology faculty, said. "Dr. Kilbourne is among the most sought-after speakers on college campuses today because of the relevance of her work and her understanding of the daily social pressures faced by today's youth."
Kilbourne, who earned a Ph.D. at Boston University, has lectured at colleges, universities, conferences and organizations.
She has written many articles, including editorials in The New York Times, USA Today and The Journal of the American Medical Women's Association, and has contributed chapters to many books.
She has been interviewed by Time, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Globe and Mail, and The Boston Globe, among many other publications. She has been a guest on hundreds of television and radio programs, including, "NewsHour with Jim Lehrer," "All Things Considered," "The Today Show," "20/20," and "The Oprah Winfrey Show."
"Dr. Kilbourne is an internationally recognized leader in her field, and her message could not be more relevant or critical to our students, who are preparing to enter an ever-changing and increasingly complex world," SUNY Fredonia President Dennis Hefner said. "We are delighted that she has accepted our invitation to speak, and we look forward to having her kickoff what promises to be a very interesting year of collective introspection across our campus."
Through her lectures, films and articles, many of her original ideas and concepts have become mainstream.
These include the concepts of the tyranny of the beauty ideal, the connection between the objectification of women and violence, the themes of liberation and weight control exploited in tobacco advertising aimed at women, the targeting of alcoholics by the alcohol industry, addiction as a love affair, and many others.
She has served as an advisor to former Surgeons General C. Everett Koop and Antonia Novello and has testified for the U.S. Congress.
In 1993, she was appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services to the National Advisory Council on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.
"Jean Kilbourne's appearance will be both an enriching and eye-opening experience for students," freshman public relations major Lauren Orlowski said, who serves as one of two student members on the committee. "I think it is crucial that students understand the effects mass media has on our generation, and I feel that Ms. Kilbourne exceeds every expectation when addressing these issues. Her unique and witty style allows her to connect with students and encourage them to take action on their own interests, and become more involved in society's interest as well."
The Maytum Convocation Lecture will once again be free and open to the public, although tickets will be required.
Tickets will be released at the start of the fall semester and available through the SUNY Fredonia Ticket Office, and a separate announcement with details on how to obtain them will be made at that time.