The deadly storming of the Capitol Building on January 6 dramatically underscored the current crisis in American democracy. A panel discussion, “A Crisis of Democracy,” will bring together Virginia Tech scholars to examine the state of democracy in the United States today, while also making connections to the global political landscape.

The virtual event, held Thursday, January 21, from 6 to 7 p.m., will aim to place recent troubling events into historical and comparative context to better understand fundamental challenges to American democracy and where the nation should go from here.

Sponsored by the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, the panel discussion is also part of a Virginia Tech series of conversations and workshops on America, Race, and Democracy. This new collaborative effort is a partnership of the Office for Inclusion and Diversity, the Academy of Transdisciplinary Studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, and the Equity and Social Disparity in the Human Condition Destination Area.   


Laura Belmonte, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences and a professor of history, will moderate the discussion. The panelists include:

  • Farida Jalalzai, associate dean for global initiatives and engagement in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences and a professor of political science;
  • Brandy Faulkner, Gloria D. Smith Professor of Black Studies at Virginia Tech and a collegiate assistant professor of political science; and
  • Michael Horning, an associate professor of multimedia journalism in the School of Communication and associate director of social informatics research in the Virginia Tech Center for Human-Computer Interaction.

Advance registration is available to members of the Virginia Tech community: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_JPpitOrPQ_SuZ_AeFDGczQ. (Please note that a vt.edu email address is required for preregistration.)

Following the event, the captioned panel discussion will be uploaded to this page for general viewing; please stay tuned!