Mildred Fish-Harnack Human Rights and Democracy Lecture

The Mildred Fish-Harnack Human Rights and Democracy Lecture is an annual event designed to promote greater understanding of human rights and democracy, and enrich international studies at UW–Madison. The lecture brings to campus a person who contributes to the cause of human rights through academic scholarship and/or active leadership.

Upcoming Lecture

TODAY, MONDAY, APRIL 17, 2023, 4-5:30 P.M.

Pyle Center or Join Us Virtually 

Event is free and open to the public.

Shannon Speed
Shannon Speed

Rethinking Violence Against Indigenous Women
Through a Lens of Human Rights

Shannon Speed (Chickasaw), Director of the American Indian Studies Center; Professor of American Indian Studies, Anthropology, and Gender Studies; and Special Advisor to the Chancellor on Native American and Indigenous Affairs, UCLA

Shannon Speed has worked for twenty-five years in Mexico and the United States on issues of indigenous rights, gender, neoliberalism, violence, migration, and activist research. Her books include the award-winning Incarcerated Stories: Indigenous Women Migrants and Violence in the Settler Capitalist State (UNC Press 2020) and the co-edited volume with Lynn Stephen, Heightened States of Injustice: Activist Research on Indigenous Women and Violence (University of Arizona Press 2021). She is currently working on a new book with her own tribal nation entitled, Chickasaw Rising: Law and Resurgent Sovereignty in the Chickasaw Nation. She is a recipient of the Chickasaw Dynamic Woman of the Year award from the Chickasaw Nation and the President’s Award from the American Anthropological Association (AAA). Speed recently served as the president of the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA 2018-2021).

Sponsored by the International Division, Human Rights Program, and the Global Legal Studies Center.

About the Lecture

The lecture is named after a Milwaukee native who was a UW–Madison student in the 1920s. While living in Germany, Fish-Harnack assisted in the escape of German Jews and political dissidents. She is the only American civilian executed under the personal instruction of Adolf Hitler, for her resistance to the Nazi regime. Established in 1994, the lecture is presently sponsored by the International Division, along with the Human Rights Program, Global Legal Studies Center, Center for Research on Gender and Women, and the 4W Initiative. Learn more about Mildred Fish-Harnack.

Past Speakers

2022: Rebecca Donner, “Mildred Harnack: An American Graduate Student at the Center of Berlin’s Underground Resistance to Hitler”

2021: David Kaye, “From Monopoly to Autocracy: A Human Rights Agenda for the Global Internet”

2018: Navi Pillay, “Current Challenges and the Future of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights”

2017: Farhana Khera, “Upholding America’s Promise for All,”

2016: Viviana Krsticevic, “Judging and Gender in the International Realm”

2015: Obiora Chinedu Okafor, “The International Law of Secession and the Protection of the Human Rights of Oppressed Sub-State Groups: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow”

2012: Rashida Manjoo, “After the Violence: The Dream of Another Reality”