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Elson S. Floyd Cultural Center presents Schubert’s ‘Winterreise’

The School of Music and the Elson S. Floyd Cultural Center present an immersive concert experience of Franz Schubert’s landmark song cycle Winterreise (Winter Journey) on Friday, Jan. 28 at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free.

Yoon Wah Roh.
Aaron Agulay.

This performance will feature WSU faculty Aaron Agulay (baritone) and Yoon-Wha Roh (piano) and the artwork of Walla Walla-based artist Keiko Hara. It will be followed by an artist meet and greet.

This performance will be the first of its kind on the WSU Pullman campus and will kick off a series of cultural events that amplify the work of local artists and support a more welcoming WSU campus culture and climate.

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WSU Insider

Toxins, dioxins and potential risks to grandchildren from the UPL chemical inferno

With the barest trickle of information seeping beneath the closed-door investigation into the UPL chemical disaster in Durban, South Africa, the public is still in the dark about health impacts and exposure levels from airborne toxic chemical exposure. But studies on people and animals exposed to several of these chemicals point to significant health problems that could potentially extend several generations into the future.

Michael Skinner.

These include the potential for chemicals to induce transgenerational epigenetic health impacts, a relatively new field of research pioneered by Washington State University biology professor, Dr Michael Skinner.

In simple terms, Skinner’s research group has sought to demonstrate that certain chemicals that your great-grandmother was exposed to could cause disease in you and your grandchildren.

A fuller explanation of his research work can be viewed in this 20-minute TEDx talk.

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Daily Maverick

Can math make redistricting more fair?

Just before midnight on Tuesday, Sept. 28, an independent, bipartisan commission voted to approve a new map for Colorado’s congressional districts––dividing the state into eight territories with roughly equal populations.

Colorado, like every other state in the union, undergoes the process of reshaping its local and national voting districts every 10 years. You could fill a picture book with the convoluted, sometimes cartoonish shapes these regions take. Ohio’s fourth congressional district, for example, looks like a bit like duck, or maybe a dragon. Then there’s Illinois’ fourth, which political commentators often compare to earmuffs.

A team of mathematician has released reports analyzing Colorado’s redistricting processes that suggest these maps don’t seem to give any political party an unfair advantage in the state’s elections––at least for now.

Daryl DeFord.

Coauthors on the new analyses include mathematics professor Daryl DeFord of Washington State University.

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Does funding help encourage women to run for legislative office?

Research explains when political financing works — and when it doesn’t

By Ragnhild Muriaas and WSU political science professors Amy G. Mazur and Season Hoard

Season Hoard.
Amy Mazur.

Early voting is opening in Virginia and Democrats are determined to retain control of the legislature. In the first state elections since President Biden took office and Texas adopted the most restrictive abortion law in the nation, 50 of 97 Democratic nominees are women.

Many female nominees are backed by seed money from political organizations dedicated to fight for more diversity in elected office. Such programs have helped female candidates winning seats before. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), before she became a member of Congress, was recruited by Justice Democrats, an organization that offered her training, a platform and some campaign funding.

But that’s unusual. In the United States and across the globe, political power is heavily skewed toward the rich. Structural barriers make it almost impossible for women from working-class backgrounds — like Ocasio-Cortez — to win public office.

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Washington Post

A California fisherman sails the choppy waters of climate change and drought

Along California’s economically distressed rural North Coast — where the future lies not in the fishing and logging jobs that once defined it but, increasingly, in tourism — climate change has forced those who live by the rod and the reel to consider their options.

For decades, many rural communities like Fort Bragg that once relied upon natural resource-based industries — like fishing, logging or mining — have tried to pivot to tourism, including plans to build a new marine science center on the site of the struggling lumber town’s last sawmill. It’s not an easy transition.

Jennifer Sherman.

“The jobs that tourism brings, large proportions are service-industry jobs, are seasonal or part time, and don’t lift a family above the poverty line,” said Jennifer Sherman, an associate professor of sociology at Washington State University who focuses on rural communities.

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Yahoo News