Marian Miner Cook

A distinctive
feature of social and
cultural life at CMC


Around the World at the Ath: Mardi Gras

Tue, February 13, 2024
Dinner Program
The ASCMC Social Life Working Group and Profs. Paul Hurley and Troy Mills

Join the Athenaeum and ASCMC's Social Life Working Group for the next installment of Around the World at the Ath, a series designed to combine faculty and student expertise about international cultures and traditions with great cuisine, music, and fun programming. This month, we head down the Mississippi River to New Orleans to celebrate Mardi Gras! The Big Easy is known the world over for its vibrant history and its distinctive blend of Creole, Cajun, Caribbean, French, Spanish, and American cultures. Join CMC’s own faculty members Paul Hurley (Philosophy) and Troy Mills (Religious Studies) for a tour of the parades, cuisines, and beliefs that contribute to New Orleans’ vibrant and colorful Carnival celebrations. Blending personal anecdotes with a discussion of jazz and Afro-Caribbean religion, enjoy this festive night at the Ath and laissez les bons temps rouler!

Paul Hurley is the Sexton Professor of Philosophy at Claremont McKenna College, where he has been awarded both the Huntoon and Senior Huntoon Teaching Awards. He teaches courses both in CMC’s Philosophy Department, and in its PPE Program. Paul has published articles in ethics, the history of ethics, and meta-ethics. An earlier book length contribution to these debates, Beyond Consequentialism, was published by Oxford University Press.  His new book, Against the Tyranny of Outcomes, comes out with Oxford later this year.  

Paul grew up in New Orleans, and has spent countless hours over the years doing hands on, experience-based research of Mardi Gras.  He rode with the Krewe of Bacchus when doing that was still cool.

Troy Mills is a recent Post-Doctoral Fellow and current Visiting Assistant Professor of Religious Studies of African American and African Diaspora religious histories and the ways in which religious and spiritual practices are used to reclaim personhood and humanity. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, where he received the Marcus Bach Fellowship for Graduate Students in the Humanities. His dissertation, "The Rastafari and the Nation of Islam: From Black Internationalism to Globalization, 1960s–1980s," examines how the Rastafari in Jamaica and the Nation of Islam in the United States reoriented black religious consciousness and identity. At CMC, he has taught Freshman Humanities Seminars on visible and invisible freedom, as well as courses on African American Religions, Bob Marley, and Malcolm X.

Mills will discuss “Mardi Gras, Zulu King, Black Indians, and the Jazz Funerals and the Second Line” and how, in the public sphere, the laid back and jubilant persona of Mardi Gras is built upon the private sphere of black New Orleanians’ rich legacy of resistance against racial and social oppression.

Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum

Claremont McKenna College
385 E. Eighth Street
Claremont, CA 91711


Phone: (909) 621-8244 
Fax: (909) 621-8579