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University Hosts Discussion on Women, Scandal, Social Media Oct. 25

Event follows Syracuse Stage production of Steve Martin’s ‘The Underpants’

Oct 20, 2015 — Article by: Amy Manley

Scene from ‘The Underpants’

Syracuse Stage, Steve Martin’s ‘The Underpants’

Syracuse SymposiumTM continues its “Networks” theme with a panel discussion on the media’s portrayal of women—from gossip circles in the early 20th century to modern-day social networks—and its ensuing impact on gender bias.

Titled “Glamour and Damage: Women, Scandal, and Social Media Networks,” the event will take place on Sunday, Oct. 25, at 4 p.m. at Syracuse Stage (820 East Genesee St.), immediately following the matinee performance of Steve Martin’s The Underpants. 

The discussion, which is free and open to the public, is co-sponsored by Syracuse Stage and the Syracuse University Humanities Center, based in the College of Arts and Sciences. For more information, call 315-443-7192 or visit

Using The Underpants as a launch-pad, the discussion will explore how women have been characterized, victimized, shamed, and sensualized throughout history.

Alston, Hirsch, Brown

(L-R) Alston, Hirsch, Brown

Panelists include Kal Alston, professor of cultural foundations of education in the School of Education and Syracuse’s senior vice president for human capital development; Harriet Brown, associate professor of magazine journalism in Syracuse’s Newhouse School of Public Communications; and Christine Courtade Hirsch, assistant professor of communication studies at SUNY Oswego. 

Running through Nov. 8, The Underpants is a witty commentary on gender politics and instant celebrity. Adapted from Carl Sternheim’s 1911 work Die Hose, the play is set in early 20th-century Germany, and follows one woman’s “very public wardrobe malfunction.”

Show tickets may be purchased by calling 315-443-3275 or visiting

The Syracuse University Humanities Center, founded in 2008, fosters public engagement in the humanities, and is home to the Syracuse Symposium™, the Central New York Humanities Corridor, the Jeanette K. Watson Distinguished Visiting Professorship, the Mellon Visiting Collaborator, the HC Mini-Seminar and Symposium Seminar series, the Perpetual Peace Project, and other annual research initiatives, annual fellowships and public programming.

Contact Information

Amy Manley