Vermont Humanities

How Did Germany’s Weimar Democracy Become the Third Reich?

Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Bennington 108 School St, Bennington, VT, United States

Defeated, humiliated, and in chaos, Germany after World War I was imperiled by leftist revolution and right-wing violence. Jack Mayer recounts the origins of the Third Reich through the story of Ernst Werner Techow, a member of the para-military Free Corps and the murderous Organization C, who was recruited into a clandestine assassination network trying to bring down the fledgling Weimar democracy.

Must Free Speech Endure Hate Speech?

Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Bennington 108 School St, Bennington, VT, United States

The First Amendment prevents Congress from passing any laws that abridge the freedom of speech. But what does that actually mean? Professor Meg Mott considers the history of speech laws in the United States, how states and municipalities have tried to curb offensive speech, and how the Supreme Court has ruled on those efforts.

A Dramatic Constitution

Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Bennington 108 School St, Bennington, VT, United States

In this presentation, Meg Mott considers how the Constitution both forces and frames our disagreements. In the first two centuries, citizens regularly debated public matters, drawing on the Constitution as a shared authority. What does it mean for our republic when only legal professionals take the stage?