Credit: Don Burkett/Flickr

HYDE PARK — Cook County residents can tune in to a seven-week series of free lectures offered by the University of Chicago, as the university looks to encourage education during the coronavirus pandemic.

Every week during the program, the university will release past lectures and interviews by UChicago faculty and staff centered around a weekly topic.

Previously released topics will remain available through the length of the program so residents can follow along at their own pace.

The seven weekly themes are:

  • July 20: The racial justice movement
  • July 27: COVID-19
  • Aug. 3: Humanities
  • Aug. 10: Community and education
  • Aug. 17: Democracy and citizenship
  • Aug. 24: Science and discovery
  • Aug. 31: Law and policy

“We are excited to offer this unique educational opportunity to residents of Cook County and hope to empower learning during a difficult time when people are at home and looking for something new to do,” Toni Preckwinkle, Cook County Board president and UChicago alumna, said in a statement.

The most recent series on the racial justice movement includes:

  • A brief interview with South Side historian Timuel Black on his experience growing up in Chicago’s Black Belt.
  • Poet Eve Ewing’s June 15 appearance on NPR, in which she links the 1919 race riots to this summer’s racial unrest.
  • Podcast episodes on the movement to defund the police and radical kindness.
  • A lecture exploring whether racism is biological, given by UChicago neurobiology professor Peggy Mason.

“The Office of Civic Engagement is pleased to partner with Cook County and share a unique cross-section of offerings from our faculty and experts throughout the university with our neighbors,” said Derek Douglas, the university’s vice president of civic engagement and external affairs, in a statement.

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