George Will, one of the country’s most widely read political columnists and conservative voices, will kick off the Bucknell Forum 2023-24 speaker series, presenting on the theme “Freedom of Expression” Tuesday, Sept. 19, at 7:30 p.m. in the Weis Center for the Performing Arts. He will then engage in a limited Q&A session, where he will answer questions from Bucknell students.
“George Will is a Pulitzer Prize–winning syndicated columnist and one of the most respected political commentators on the national scene,” Bucknell President John Bravman says. “He will undoubtedly share his informed perspectives and understanding of these most historic political times.”
Will is the first of five nationally renowned speakers participating in this year’s Bucknell Forum — a speaker series that since 2007 has featured national leaders, scholars and commentators who have examined various issues from multidisciplinary and diverse viewpoints.
About George Will
Will is an American journalist and pundit known for focusing on political conservatism, particularly in his newspaper column, syndicated by The Washington Post since 1974, which appears twice weekly in more than 440 newspapers. A contributor to MSNBC and NBC News, he previously appeared on Fox News’ Special Report and Fox News Sunday, and provided commentary for three decades on ABC’s This Week. Will also was a contributing editor for Newsweek, where he wrote a bimonthly essay. He won a Pulitzer Prize for Commentary in 1977.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in religion from Trinity College (Conn.), and a degree in philosophy, politics and economics from Magdalen College, Oxford. He then went on to Princeton University and graduated with a master’s and doctoral degree in politics. He later taught political science at Michigan State University and the University of Toronto.
In 1970, Will became a writer on the staff of Republican U.S. Sen. Gordon Allott (Colo.), having moved from the liberal politics of his upbringing to a more conservative perspective during his Oxford years. In early 1973, he became the Washington editor for the conservative biweekly National Review, and later that year began writing for The Washington Post as well. He then joined the incipient conservative writers’ group formed by the Post, which in 1974 began syndicating his columns nationwide. That year he also began making appearances on the political talk show Agronsky & Co. In 1975, he left the National Review to become a contributing editor for Newsweek, and the next year he began publishing a biweekly column in the magazine, which he left in 2011. He began appearing regularly as a panelist on ABC’s This Week program in 1981.
Will is a prolific author who has written extensively about political culture — including Statecraft as Soulcraft: What Government Does, One Man’s America: The Pleasures and Provocations of Our Singular Nation and The Conservative Sensibility. He also has written about America’s pastime — including Bunts, A Nice Little Place on the North Side: Wrigley Field at One Hundred and Men At Work: The Craft of Baseball, which topped the New York Times bestseller list for two months. His 16th book, American Happiness and Discontents: The Unruly Torrent, 2008-2020 (Sept. 2021), was his ninth collection of reflections on the nation’s culture.
All Bucknell Forum events are free and open to the public, although tickets are required.
Current Bucknell students and employees may receive up to two free tickets at any Campus Box Office location, or online, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 18, a day prior to the event. A valid Bucknell University ID is required to receive advance tickets. Use of multiple Bucknell IDs to pick up additional sets of tickets is prohibited.
Remaining tickets will be available for the general public at the Weis Center box office beginning at 6 p.m. on the day of the event. All individuals may receive up to two free tickets, depending on availability.
An ASL interpreter will be signing at the event for the hearing-impaired community. Attendees who need this service should contact [email protected] for seating arrangements.
Questions regarding this event may be directed to the Division of Communications at 570-577-3260 or [email protected].
Remaining Bucknell Forum Speakers
All remaining speakers in this year’s Bucknell Forum will appear in person at 7:30 p.m. on these dates:
- Claremont McKenna College Professor of American Politics Jon A. Shields, author or co-author of three books on the American right, Tuesday, Oct. 17, in Vaughan Literature Building’s Trout Auditorium.
- New York Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult Tuesday, Jan. 23, in the Weis Center.
- New York Times bestselling author, journalist and activist George M. Johnson Tuesday, Feb. 27, in Trout Auditorium.
- Academy Award-winning actor and activist Jane Fonda Tuesday, March 19, in the Weis Center.