Robert H. Jackson Series Begins

CHAUTAUQUA – Dozens of people are signed up to take a master’s class about Robert H. Jackson this week at Chautauqua Institution.

“One of the extraordinary things that Chautauqua offers is master’s classes, the chance for artists in various disciplines to work with a premier performer, teacher, artist in that discipline, to see him or her do a craft, and then take a deep breath and do it in his or her supervision,” said John Barrett, professor at St. John’s University School of Law and Elizabeth S. Lenna Fellow at the Robert H. Jackson Center. “This is a master’s class in communication.”

Barrett opened a weeklong Special Studies lecture series entitled “The Practice of Justice Jackson’s Art: Talent and Responsibility in Public Communication” at Chautauqua Institution on Monday. Throughout the week, the series will explore how Jackson organized and prepared his writing and speeches, and how his successors in government, global media and public discourse strive to deliver their messages well and effectively.

Throughout the hourlong discussion, Barrett showed pictures of Jackson, offering the history behind each photo. He showed photos of Frewsburg School from the early 1900s, where Jackson attended grade school and high school. Barrett also showed pictures of Jamestown High School, where he said Jackson attended classes for higher education.

Additionally, Barrett spoke about Jackson’s support system, including family and teachers, who encouraged him. Following his schooling, Barrett said Jackson was an apprentice who also took law classes in Albany. He then became a lawyer, eventually moving up the ranks before arguing Supreme Court cases and becoming chief United States prosecutor at the Nuremberg Trials.

Barrett also played a clip of Jackson speaking during the closing arguments of the Nuremberg Trials before taking questions from the audience.

The lecture series will be continuing throughout the week. Today, Douglas Neckers, McMaster Distinguished Research Professor Emeritus from Bowling Green State University and Henry T. King Fellow at the Robert H. Jackson Center, will be discussing the Nuremberg Trial, John Heyl Vincent and Harvard Chemistry.

Wednesday, Larry Thompson, executive vice president of government affairs, general counsel and corporate secretary of PepsiCo will host a lecture entitled “A Conversation with Larry D. Thompson.”

Thursday, Peter Weitzel, retired managing editor of the Miami Herald will discuss “Government and Your Right to Know – The Battle Continues.”

The lecture concludes Friday with James H. Mullen Jr., president of Allegheny College in Meadville, Pa. Mullen’s lecture is entitled: “A Conversation with Jim Mullen.”

The cost of the lectures is $22 for each daily session, or $88 for the entire week’s sessions. Access to the grounds for the lectures requires a commuter gate pass.