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Illinois Central College’s “Between the Lines” Lecture Series Announces Spring Schedule

Illinois Central College’s “Between the Lines” program is a free, open-to-the-public lecture series presented by faculty members of the ICC English, Humanities and Language Studies Department. The goal of the series is to offer literary presentations that interest students and people in the community, as well as promote reading literacy and scholarly study.

The spring topics include 1) the enjoyment surrounding biographies, 2) the Norse gods in current American pop culture and 3) the fascination with true crime and its revival in the past few years.

On Wednesday, February 5, Paul Resnick will present “The Joy of Biography” in Room 210A on the East Peoria Campus from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. We love to read about people. What makes them tick? How did they survive the good times and the bad? Who surrounded them? How did they advance or delay the human race? Attendees will discuss the joys of reading biographies and the lessons we learn. Please feel free to bring a favorite biography you’ve read or plan to read.

On Tuesday, March 10, Jim Sullivan will present “Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman” in Arbor Auditorium on the Peoria Campus from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. This lecture will dive in to why so many people love tales about the Norse gods. Thor, Odin, and Loki inhabit not just the legends of the frozen North, but also current American pop culture. Neil Gaiman’s recent book retells some of those legends for a twenty-first-century audience who can’t get enough of this barbaric content.

On Thursday, April 16, Melissa Grunow will present “True Crime Fandom: Ethical Justice or Grotesque Entertainment?” in Room 210A on the East Peoria Campus from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. True crime has experienced a revival in the past five years with so many popular podcasts and Netflix docuseries. Although humankind’s fascination with crime can be traced back to cave paintings 30,000 years ago, the latest surge in old murder cases, kidnapped children and felonious celebrities has become an all-consuming pastime. It gives pause to wonder if the popularity of true crime is somehow perverse and harmful to victims whose trauma is our entertainment. On the other hand, true crime fixation provides a platform for a national conversation about key social justice issues and serves as a catalyst for change. Those attending will learn the socio-historical evolution of true crime fascination, the psychological appeal of gruesome violence and ethical conundrums associated with the genre.

For more information, please contact Jim Sullivan at [email protected] or (309) 694-5357.