French Embassy Co-Sponsors Lafayette Debates
On April 12 and 13, the Embassy of France and The George Washington University hosted a student competition called “The Lafayette Debates.”
Beginning with a series of online debates and multimedia competitions, the debates culminated in a tournament hosted by the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies of the George Washington University. This year the topic addresses the question of the value of cultural expressions in the context of International trade.
In an echo to the mutual aid and friendship between France and the United States, the French Embassy along with the George Washington University has launched the Lafayette Debates. The aim of the debates is to foster and promote Franco-American relation by engaging future leaders on timely topics of mutual interest to the United States and France.
Responding to the prompt of defending the cultural exception, the best and brightest student debaters had the opportunity to engage with prominent scholars, diplomats, military figures, and professionals on issues of political, social, and cultural significance.
The winning pair of the tournament was Emory University, represented by Brian Klarman and Kristin Lowe. The other finalists were Danny Alexander and Eric Lanning from Houston University. The best speaker of the tournament was Joseph Nelson of The George Washington University.
The individuals who competed in the semi-finals of the tournament were from Emory University, Houston University, University of Southern California, and Mary Washington University. As a prize for their performance in the debates, the students have been invited to travel to France in June. While there, they will have the opportunity to continue their exploration of the tournament topics firsthand in discussions with French government officials, intellectuals, businesspeople, and topic experts.
The Lafayette Debates are intended to promote international civil society by engaging future leaders on relevant topics of mutual interest to France and the United States.
For more information on the debates, please visit: http://www.lafayettedebates.com/index.htm