Beginning in the late 16th century in France and Italy, artists, intellectuals, political figures and much more came together regularly to discuss the most influential works and ideas of their day. Salon gatherings had participants who entertained each other with new music, brief theatrical performances, sardonic letters, but more often than not these gatherings were opportunities to discuss important literary works, political rumblings or consider the efficacy of scientific breakthroughs. All Salons were based on the understanding that the participants were intellectually informed and were active participants in the world of ideas that surrounded them. To that end, the Judith K. Winn School of Honors has decided to establish a Salon, the Bergen Salon. The Bergen Salon will hold monthly events where faculty, administrators and students engage in discussion on academic and intellectual pursuits of our day. The Bergen Salon will be a Socratic discussion where participants will have read an assigned text, perhaps a literary text, a philosophical essay, an article on a recent scientific advance, or an essay on a cultural trend or a significant historical event, to name but a few.

Events and readings for Fall 2021:

Bergen Salon I:  – Covid: from Pandemic to Endemic – Tuesday, September 28, 2021, 12:30pm-1:30pm
On Campus: Room S-134

All faculty, staff and students are invited to join the Judith K. Winn School of Honors and Phi Theta Kappa for a discussion of the current situation with Covid-19.  We have brought back our panelists from last September’s Salon on Covid for an update. Dr. Barbara Davis (Biology) will discuss predictions of when COVID-19 may become an endemic rather than a pandemic disease and variables that may affect the course of the disease; Dr. Jessica Datema (Composition & Literature) will discuss literary and artistic views on how our sense of time has been reshaped in the last 18 months; Dr. Ilan Ehrlich (History) will share with us how other nations, particularly those in Latin America are dealing with this pandemic.  Recommended readings and resources below:

The podcast talks about how our interdependence has become an increasing priority due to the burgeoning challenges to humans, and to the “humanities,”  since the pandemic. It also discusses everyday life during the pandemic.
1. This podcast with Jenny Odell entitled “Nature art and burnout in the quarantine” 
2. This article by Jenny Odell in The Paris Review discusses Emerson brings up the idea of how humans are interdependent upon one another time and space versus independent.

Bergen Salon II – Intertribal Native American Music from Powwow Music to Pop – Friday, October 15, 2021, 12:30pm-1:30pm
Virtual Event ONLY: Zoom Link –

All faculty, staff and students are invited to join the Judith K. Winn School of Honors and Phi Theta Kappa for a Zoom Lecture with ethnomusicologist Dr. John-Carlos Perea, Visiting Associate Professor of Music, University of California, Berkeley.  Dr. Perea will discuss his research on intertribal Native American music from powwow music to pop.  This event is provided by the Music department and Dr. Andrew Krikun.
Reading:  Music and Modernity Among First-Peoples of North America

Bergen Salon III – “Q & A: Current Topics on the Environment” – Thursday, October 28, 2021 2:00pm-3:00pm –
On Campus: Room S-134


What is happening to the Gulf Stream in the Atlantic? Why are wildfires continuously raging across the globe? Tornadoes more common in New Jersey? Answers to these and other questions concerning the environment will be addressed by Professor Robert Dill (Biological Sciences) in a Question and Answer Salon.

Bergen Salon IV – “College Read: Between the World and Me” – Tuesday, November 16, 2021, 12:30pm-1:30pm
On Campus: Room S-134 


This will be a discussion on some of the themes raised by the Ta-Nehisi Coates book, Between the World and Me – the College Read book for this academic year.  More Information:


Events and readings for Spring 2021:

Bergen Salon I – The January 6th Breach of the Capitol Building: Protest or Insurrection? – Wednesday, February 8, 2021, 2:00pm-3:00pm.  Panelists will discuss this incident from a Historical and legal perspective and analyze how Henry David Throeau’s “Essay on Civil Disobedience” might help us define if this was a product or an act of insurrection.
Panelists: Professor Kil Yi (History); Dr. Alan Kaufman (Literature); Lisa Mayer, Esq. (Legal Studies); Hamza Chah (Bergen Student)
Click on Link for Reading: “Essay on Civil Disobedience”
Join Via Webex

Bergen Salon II
– Arts in the Time of a Pandemic – Thursday, February 25, 2021, 2:00pm-3:00 pm.  This discussion is about how artists have expressed themselves during Covid; has governments assisted, and can we expect an art revolution in the first years post Pandemic.
Panelists: Dr. Andrew Krikun & Professor Daniel Sheehan (Music); Professor Jim Bumgardner & Dr. Leigh Jonaitis (Theatre); Professor Francis Schmidt & Professor Tim Blunk (Visual Arts)
Reading: Link to NYT article:
Join Via Webex –

Bergen Salon III – #MeToo (Co-sponsored by Women’s History Month) – Monday, March 22, 2021, 2:00pm-3:00pm. Discussion will feature Dr. Christine Eubank, History; Jessica Peacock, Counselling; Mira Vanjari, Center for Hope & Safety; Simaza Sadek, Director of healingSPACE
Join Via Webex –

Bergen Salon IV – Racial Stigma and Covid 19 – Tuesday, April 13, 2021, 12:30pm – 1:30pm.  Panel Discussion (Bergen Salon with the Honors Program-Director Seamus Gibbons)
A discussion of stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination toward Asians/Asian Americans during
Covid 19.  Moderator: Professor Alexander Chan and faculty and student panelists
Join via Webex –

Bergen Salon V – Q&A with drummer and author John Densmore – Tuesday, April 27, 2021, 1:45pm-2:45pm.  The BCC Performing Arts Department in collaboration with the Judith K. Winn School of Honors present an Honors Salon with Bergen Community College Distinguished Artist John Densmore, drummer of the Doors.  Dr. Andy Krikun, Professor of Music, will be interviewing Mr. Densmore about his new book, Meetings with Remarkable Musicians.
Join Via Zoom –


All readings are available on this webpage and also available on Library e-reserve under: JKW; Password: honors. Readings can also be obtained by emailing us at  Any questions, please call 201-879-5003.

The Salons are co-sponsored by the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society,