University of Rochester

EVENT: Former Political Prisoner Tells of China's Human Rights Abuses

March 11, 2003

Human rights activist Harry Wu will describe the horrors of his 19-year imprisonment in Chinese labor camps at 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 1, as part of Amnesty International's Human Rights Week programs at the University of Rochester.

Wu's personal suffering and his repeated efforts to document slavery and human rights abuses in China after his release spotlight only one country's place in the global discussion of human rights violations. His talk in Hoyt Hall on the University's River Campus is free and open to the public.

The student chapter of Amnesty International will present the lecture along with other events from March 31 to April 5. On Monday, March 31, a panel discussion about activism in art will be held at 8 p.m. in room 209 of the Computer Science Building. A screening of Dead Man Walking, the 1995 film based on the true events of a convicted killer and the nun who tried to overturn the death penalty he faced, at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 3, in room 2-101 of Dewey Hall. A discussion with Robert Holmes, professor of philosophy at the University, will follow the film.

On Saturday, April 5, an interdisciplinary conference focusing on dissent in a visual and cultural context is being incorporated into the activities for Human Rights Week. The conference presented by the Program in Visual and Cultural Studies will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 5:45 p.m. in Hoyt Hall.

Wu, the week's main speaker, has won numerous awards, including the Martin Ennals Human Rights Award and was nominated for the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize. His international bestsellers, Bitter Winds: A Memoir of My Years in China's Gulag and Troublemaker: One Man's Crusade Against China's Cruelty, detail his efforts for human rights and dignity.

Human Rights Week is sponsored by Amnesty International, the Dean of the College, the Dean of Students, the Department of History, the Interfaith Chapel, the Outside Speakers Committee, and the Program in Visual and Cultural Studies. For more information, contact Paul Linczak at (585) 271-3714.