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Movie Scenes to Illustrate Penn College Professor’s ‘Last Words’


William J. AstoreWhat does Clint Eastwood’s “Pale Rider” have to teach us about living with a clear conscience? What can Humphrey Bogart’s “Rick” in the movie “Casablanca” teach us about avoiding cynicism and recapturing idealism thought long lost? What can Chief Dan George in “Little Big Man” teach us about the sacredness of life? What can Harrison Ford and the Amish in “Witness” teach us about the power of community?

Pennsylvania College of Technology history professor William J. Astore will continue a campus tradition by giving his “final” lecture, “Last Scenes of a Cinephile,” at the fourth annual David London My Last Words Lecture Series at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 24, in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium.

He will introduce seven “last scenes” from his favorite films and explain what they mean to him and why he believes we can draw lessons and even inspiration from the movies.

Each year, Penn College hosts a lecture in which a student-nominated faculty member delivers a presentation of advice and life lessons as if it were his or her last opportunity to lecture. The series was renamed in memory of David A. London, former associate professor of speech communication/composition, in 2008-09.

London, who joined the Penn College faculty in 1990, was a popular teacher, a former chair of College Council and a strong proponent of the internal governance system.

The first lecture in Fall 2008, after the series was renamed, featured Sandra Lakey, associate professor of speech communications and composition and one of London’s closest friends and colleagues.

Adam J. Yoder, former Student Government Association president and a May graduate from Penn College’s building automation technology major, nominated Astore for the honor. A plaque presentation and reception will follow the lecture.

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