Events

    Who Discovered Evolution?

    Location: 

    Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Charles Darwin is commonly cited as the person who “discovered” evolution. But, the historical record shows that roughly seventy different individuals published work on the topic of evolution between 1748 and 1859, the year that Darwin published On the Origin of Species. These early thinkers, now almost entirely forgotten, included biologists, geologists, horticulturists, physicians, clergymen, atheists, philosophers, teachers, and poets.

    William Friedman will discuss the ideas of these pre-Darwinian evolutionists, place Darwin in a broader historical context, and...

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    The Pursuit of Happiness

    Location: 

    Harvard Business School, Klarman Hall, Batten Way, Boston

    Join this thought-provoking talk by Arthur Brooks who distills 40 years and hundreds of social science research studies on happiness, into a surprising set of answers to questions like: What percentage of the population is happy? What brings us happiness? Who is happier, men or women? How much of happiness is genetically determine?

    How can we pursue the surest path to happiness? Arthur has the answers.

    The event will have a show opener featuring a performance by the Faculty band: Indie Folk rock, including:
    Mike Norton: vocals, guitar, bass
    ...

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    Lecture: Seed Sovereignty and ‘Our Living Relatives’ in Native American Community Farming and Gardening

    Location: 

    Gund Hall, Stubbins Room 112, 48 Quincy Street, Cambridge

    Native heirloom seed varieties, many of which have been passed down through generations of Indigenous gardeners or re-acquired from seed banks or ally seed savers, are often discussed by Indigenous farmers as the foundation of the food sovereignty movement, and as helpful tools for education and reclaiming health. This presentation explores how Native American community-based farming and gardening projects are defining heirloom or heritage seeds; why maintaining and growing out these seeds is seen as so important, and how terms like seed sovereignty should be defined and enacted. Many of...

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    Concert: Parker Quartet

    Location: 

    John Knowles Paine Concert Hall, 3 Oxford St., Cambridge

    As part of the Blodgett Chamber Music Series, the Parker Quartet will perform the following: Esa-Pekka Salonen Homunculus for String Quartet (2007); Szymanowski String Quartet #2, Opus 56; Beethoven String Quartet in A minor, Opus 132.

    Please note: This event is free but tickets are required, available February 16 at Harvard Box Office, Smith Campus Center. Box Office is open Tuesday—Sunday, 12:00pm–6:00pm. Tickets are also available by phone 617-496-2222 or online. There is a small service charge for online and phone orders.

    ...

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    Film Screening: Dovlatov

    Location: 

    CGIS South Building, Room S010 (Tsai Auditorium), 1730 Cambridge St., Cambridge

    Dovlatov follows a few days in the life of famed Soviet writer, Sergei Dovlatov, on the eve of his friend's, future Nobel laureate Joseph Brodsky, emigration in 1971. Sergei is determined to stay and lead a normal life with his wife Elena and daughter Katya, however, his manuscripts are regularly rejected by the official media as his point of view is deemed undesirable.

    Dovlatov premiered at the 2018 Berlin International Film Festival, where it was awarded a Silver Bear for Outstanding Artistic Contribution for costume and production design. Directed by...

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    Saving America’s Cities: The Past, Present, and Future of Urban Revitalization

    Location: 

    Harvard Graduate School of Design, Gund Hall, Piper Auditorium, 48 Quincy St., Cambridge

    Can past efforts to revitalize America’s cities inform contemporary strategies to address the problems of economic inequality, unaffordable housing, segregated neighborhoods, and deteriorating infrastructure?

    That question, in part, informs Saving America’s Cities: Ed Logue and the Struggle to Renew Urban America in the Suburban Age, a new book by Lizabeth Cohen, Howard Mumford Jones Professor of American Studies at Harvard University and former Dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study.

    Cohen will discuss this history and will be joined in...

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    The Ancient Maya Response to Climate Change: A Cautionary Tale

    Location: 

    Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Ancient Maya civilization suffered a major demise between the tenth and eleventh centuries. The causes continue to be investigated and debated. Paleoenvironmental research over the past twenty years has revealed that the demise coincided with a prolonged, intensive drought that extended across the region, providing compelling evidence that climate change played a key role in the collapse of the Maya. Billie Turner will examine this evidence and the complex social and environmental conditions that affected Maya societies.

    ...

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    The New Geopolitical Order

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Knafel Center, 10 Garden St., Cambridge

    The new geopolitical environment taking shape in many parts of the world tends toward increasing authoritarianism and nationalistic competition. In this lecture, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, an international human rights advocate and the former United Nations high commissioner for human rights, will argue that the world’s people deserve better. Despite the demagoguery and isolationism that some leaders are pursuing, he believes it is possible to pursue thoughtful diplomacy and a system of connectivity, coalitions, and partnerships to reform institutions and change polices.

    ...

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    Parker Quartet: Spectrum

    Location: 

    Harvard Ed Portal, 224 Western Ave., Allston

    The Grammy Award-winning Parker Quartet returns to the Harvard Ed Portal February 26 as part of their 2019-2020 season. Join us for an evening of classical music that explores 300 years of the string quartet genre, and its history of inspiring great composers to create their most personal and dynamic works. Covering a wide spectrum of artistic thought and expression, from humor and mysticism to a holy song of thanksgiving, the program will highlight select works from this exciting and unique medium. All are welcome!

    ...

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    Olfaction in Science and Society

    Location: 

    Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford Street, Cambridge

    The sense of smell plays a critical role in human behavior, from warning us of potential dangers to attracting us to certain foods, places, and people. Harvard scientists Catherine Dulac and Venkatesh Murthy study the molecules, cells, and brain circuits that underlie olfaction and the social behaviors that aromas can elicit. In this program, they will engage in a conversation with internationally recognized olfactive expert Dawn Goldworm to discuss how neurobiological research on olfaction relates to our everyday experiences.

    ...

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    Conducting Oneself: Choreographing Bodies and Identities On and Off the Podium

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Knafel Center, 10 Garden St., Cambridge

    At Radcliffe, Daniel M. Callahan is beginning his second book, “Conducting Oneself,” which examines how the bodies, identities, and repertoire of orchestra conductors produce, legitimate, and limit their movements on the podium and off, from conservatories to coveted positions. Drawing on movement analysis, oral history, and affect theory, the project explores how conductors visibly embody their empathy with scores while simultaneously projecting expertise and power.

    ...

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    Harvard Film Archive: Weekend Matinee

    Location: 

    Harvard Film Archive, 24 Quincy St., Cambridge

    The HFA continues its specially priced screenings of films for children and accompanying adults, plus a special selection for teenagers. Drawing from the Harvard Film Archive collection and beyond, this series of classic and contemporary films are screened in their original formats and languages.

    All Weekend Matinee screenings are admission-free for holders of a valid Cambridge Public Library card!

    Schedule
    December 15: Three Wishes for Cinderella
    January 25: Tito and the Birds
    February 8: Whisper of the Heart
    ...

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