Salon Series

Heller Center 2021 Salon Series

What is a Salon?

Dating back to the literary and philosophical movements of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century France, a salon is “a fashionable assemblage of notables (such as literary figures, artists, or statesmen) held by custom at the home of a prominent person.”

At the Heller Center, junior faculty present their research to the campus and wider Colorado Springs community. The audience may choose – or not - to read a pre-posted selection of the professor’s writing before the event. After a brief lecture, the floor opens for questions and conversation – all with wine and cheese.

Is Wonder A Liberal Virtue?

Steven Pittz

February 25, 6-7:30pm * Steven Pittz

Steven Pittz (PhD, University of Texas, 2014) is an Assistant Professor at UCCS in the Department of Political Science.  He teaches courses on Political Philosophy, International Relations, and American Government.  He is a graduate of the UCCS Political Science Dept., BA ,2004, and is very excited to be back at his alma mater.  Previously, he was a post-doctoral fellow in the Program in Democracy and Citizenship at Emory University in Atlanta.

Professor Pittz’s research focuses primarily on political liberalism and status of spiritual freedom in modern liberal societies.  He writes on other topics in both political theory and international politics and economics.  His recent publications include, Recovering the Liberal Spirit: Nietzsche, Individuality and Spiritual Freedom (SUNY Press, 2020); and “Providential Partners? Tocqueville’s Take on Equality and Centralization” (The Journal of Politics, 2011).

Zoom Link:
Meeting ID: 937 9669 2270


Confucian Ritual and Moral Education

Colin Lewis

March 11th 6-7:30 * Colin J. Lewis

Colin J. Lewis (PhD University of Utah 2017, MPhil University of Hong Kong 2012, BA Duke University 2009) is an instructor with the UCCS Department of Philosophy and director of the UCCS Asian Studies Minor. He primarily teaches courses on Asian and comparative philosophies, and is a co-creator and co-organizer for the ongoing UCCS Philosophy in the City series. His first book, Confucian Ritual and Moral Education, was published in September 2020. He is currently working on a second book that applies comparative philosophy to contemporary sociopolitical issues including (but not limited to) revolution, oppression, and rhetoric. He has publications in the scholarly journals Dao, Educational Philosophy and Theory, Asian Philosophy, and the Journal of Confucian Philosophy and Culture, along with chapters in several forthcoming anthologies.

His areas of specialization include classical Chinese philosophy, ethics with a focus on moral psychology, philosophy of education, applied philosophy, philosophy of biology, and comparative political philosophy.

Zoom Link:
Meeting ID: 971 9794 7741


Exploring Setting and Narrative in Hemingway’s “Wine of Wyoming”

Susan Vandagriff March 25th  6-7:30pm* Susan Vandagriff

Susan Vandagriff is an assistant professor and the scholarly communications librarian for the Kraemer Family Library at University of Colorado Colorado Springs. Her research has appeared in the Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication and The Hemingway ReviewReading Hemingway’s Winner Take Nothing will be her first book.

As a librarian, my research interests are faculty and student publication habits, predatory publishing, and scholarly communications outreach and assessment. Outside of work, my research focuses on English and American literature.

Zoom Link:
Meeting ID: 941 1110 9133



Cab Calloway and the Jive Drug

April 8th 6-7:30pm * Max Shulman

Max Shulman is an assistant professor of theatre in the Department of Visual and Performing Max ShulmanArts. He holds a doctorate in theatre history from Tufts University. His forthcoming book The American Pipe Dream: Performance of Drug Addiction, 1890-1940 will be published by Iowa University Press. He is the co-editor of the recent collection Performing the Progressive Era: Immigration, Nationalism, and Urban Life. At UCCS, he is the director of the HomeFront Theatre Project that creates performance events around issues affecting our veteran and active duty communities. His research has been published in Modern Drama, Theatre Topics, Theatre Annual, Studies in American Jewish Literature, and on

His research interests include Progressive Era Theatre, popular culture, the history of Counter Culture movements,  and political theatre.

Zoom Link:
Meeting ID: 946 6375 0345

Past Salons

Changing Times, Changing Families
Changing Times, Changing Families
Professor Esther Lamidi - Sociology
Summer 2020
Fighting For justice Without Going To War
Fighting For Justice Without Going To War
Professor Jennifer Kling - Philosophy
Fall 2019
War/Non War
Non War
Professor Stephen Carter - English
Spring 2019
The Ethnic Return Migration Of Korean Americans
The Ethnic Return Migration Of Korean Americans
Professor Stephen Suh - Sociology
Fall 2018
Ludlow Massacre Site
Ludlow Massacre Site
Professor Karin Larkin - Anthropology
Spring 2018
Our Secular Eighteenth Century
Our Secular Eighteenth Century
Professor David Diamond - English
Fall 2017