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April 7, 2004


    OSWEGO -- In addition to more than 200 presenters from the SUNY Oswego campus community, this year's Quest on Wednesday, April 21, will feature a keynote speaker on Adirondack history through postcards. Dr. Robert Bogdan of Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs will speak at 2 p.m. in Room 104 of Lanigan Hall.

    Quest, Oswego's annual symposium dedicated to sharing the scholarly and creative activity of students, faculty and staff, will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Lanigan Hall and Hewitt Union. About 120 presentations are scheduled this year, said Bill Bosch, who chairs the campus committee that organizes Quest.

    Bogdan is a distinguished professor of sociology and cultural foundations of education at Syracuse and the co-author of two widely used textbooks on qualitative research. The topic of his talk will be the topic of his most recent research, "Constructing the Worlds of Adirondack Postcard Photographers."

    "Through archival data, local histories, interviews and research, he renders an historically specific context and, through that, enlarges our view of the possibilities lying within the local," said Claire Putala of Oswego's curriculum and instruction department, also a member of the Quest subcommittee. "Bogdan has created a compelling new genre of his own that provides insight into how the past might have looked and felt to those living and constructing it," she added.

    Bogdan has published widely. Among his many books are the 1988 "Freak Show: Presenting Human Oddities for Amusement and Profit" and "Adirondack Vernacular," published last year. He received a Fulbright award to teach and study at Stockholm University in 1996. His doctorate is from Syracuse University.

    Talks, readings and performances by individuals and teams during Quest will range across the disciplines. For example:

-    In "For Entertainment Purposes Only: The Genesis of Belief," psychology major Erin Halligan will explore rationality, deception and decision making through the lens of paranormal phenomena at 8:45 a.m. in Room 104 of Lanigan Hall.

-    Dr. Robert Ballentine of the meteorology department will present a simulation of January's snowstorm at 9 a.m. in Room 103 of Lanigan Hall.

-    At 9 a.m. in Room 223 of Hewitt Union, a women's studies panel of students will include several talks addressing what feminism is, natural versus ethical caring, the sexual double standard, how to decode gendered language, and Mexican women artists' versions of the Virgin of Guadalupe.

-    Dr. Tim Delaney of the sociology department will speak on "Upstate New York Street Gangs: Murder and Mayhem in Thruway Cities" at 10 a.m. in Room 104 of Lanigan Hall.

    The day's program and abstracts will be available on the Web at Printed versions will be available on April 21 in Hewitt Union and Lanigan Hall.

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