Rock Valley College

First Tuesday Lecture Series

All RVC First Tuesday Lectures are held in the Educational Resource Center Performing Arts Room (PAR) on RVC's main campus. All lectures start at 6 p.m. unless otherwise stated.

Lectures are free and open to the general public. Refreshments are served 30 minutes prior to each lecture start time. For more information call Kathy McCarty at (815) 921-4009.

First Tuesday Lecture


Tuesday, March 13

Confederate Monuments and the Confederate Flag:   History or Hate?
Presented by Dr. Daniel Blumlo, Associate Professor of History

This lecture will give background context as to when and why Confederate monuments and the Confederate flag started to appear in communities throughout the United States.  In addition, we will explore the controversy surrounding the removal of confederate symbols (flag, statues, and monuments) from public spaces.  Many Americans see the removal of a statue as an assault on our past, as an attempt to erase history.  We do not learn history from a monument, however.  Instead monuments and statues are ways that we choose to honor and celebrate figures, trends, and values.

Tuesday, April 3 – NOON

The Power of the Dark Side: Toni Morrison and Star Wars
Presented by Kenneth Webb, Assistant Professor of English

In Playing in the Dark, author and literary critic Toni Morrison explores how American identity was established in the literary canon by contrasting racialized images of whiteness and blackness. This lecture will extend Morrison’s argument from the literary canon into modern pop culture by examining how the same motifs play in Star Wars.

Tuesday, April 3

Blue Knights: Representation of Police Officers in Popular Culture in the United States between 1945 and 1992
Presented by Dr. Martin Quirk, Professor of History

This presentation will examine the shifting images of police officers in the United States.   With the advent of television after World War II, the development of mass culture representations of police officers in popular culture became more prevalent.  From classic television shows such as Dragnet and Adam 12, to the books of real life police officer Joseph Wambaugh including The Blue Knight, The Onion Field, and The Choirboys.  These were joined by popular motion pictures including Serpico and Prince of the City.   During this time period a more complex picture of the role of the American police officer emerged challenging the ingrained cultural image of the “Officer Friendly”.

Tuesday, May 1

Warfare in the Life of Muhammad
Presented by Brian Wagner, Assistant Professor of Philosophy

What does the Qur’an say about warfare?  What was the context of Muhammad’s life that would cause him and others to go to war?  In the lecture, we will examine the life of Muhammad with a specific eye toward the major battles in which he fought.  We will then examine each of the Qur’anic scriptures on warfare to understand the context of each verse.  We will also examine the Islamic notion of a Just War theory.

Any views or opinions presented are solely those of the presenter and do not necessarily represent those of Rock Valley College, the Rock Valley College Board of Trustees, their agents or employees.