Skip to main content

All upcoming Lectures

All upcoming Lectures

Showing programs 1 to 10 of 116
May 28, 2024

As twilight settled in the ancient world, a host of activities began, some of which were significantly different from what was done during the day. Paleolithic archaeologist April Nowell reveals the people who worked the night shift in ancient societies: the hunters, sewage workers, poets, ironsmiths, rebellion leaders, and others. Drawing on archaeological data and textual evidence, she argues that night in the ancient world was anything but sleepy.


May 29, 2024

Impressionism ignited in the rolling green countryside of Normandy, France, where Claude Monet and other local artists developed this new way of painting, shocking many traditionalists. In a spring lecture series, travel writer Barbara Noe Kennedy takes you to visit the sites where Impressionism was born and evolved—including the exact places where well-known paintings were created. Maps, photos, videos, and other visuals accompany the journey through the countryside and the Paris area. This session focuses on the origins of Impressionism. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


May 29, 2024

Tucked away along coastal Maine, Hog Island is the home of a National Audubon Society camp that has been operation since 1936. Isolated from the outside world and filled with both pristine forest and coastal habitats, the surrounding Muscongus Bay teems with terns, bald eagles, common eiders, and seals. Naturalist Matt Felperin shares his experiences at the camp, displays striking wildlife photos, and reveals why Hog Island should be on your bucket list of nature-education programs.


May 30, 2024

For historians like Megan Kate Nelson, the “archive,” usually a library, university, museum, or historical society collection, is a sacred place. But what happens when these sources don’t contain the answers they seek? Nelson unfolds three research adventures that led her to places beyond the traditional archives—including a mountain pass in New Mexico—during her preparation for The Three-Cornered War, a book about the Civil War in the desert Southwest.


May 30, 2024

The taboo-smashing star Anna May Wong challenged Hollywood at its own game by speaking out about the industry’s blatant racism. Unhappy with being typecast as a China doll or dragon lady, she used her international fame to reshape Asian American representation in film. Biographer Katie Gee Salisbury discusses Wong’s career as a groundbreaking artist, bringing an unsung heroine to light and reclaiming her place in cinema history.


May 30, 2024

One of the biggest food trends today is a traditional Japanese ingredient called koji, the mold-inoculated grains responsible for miso, soy sauce, sake, mirin, and a host of other ingredients. Although it has been a culinary mainstay in Asia for centuries, it's only recently that Western chefs have started catching on to its transformative powers as a seasoning and a curing agent. Takashi Sato, an eighth-generation member of the founding family of a tamari and miso brewery, shares how koji creates the flavors behind your favorite Japanese foods. After the presentation, savor the secret ingredient as you sample foods and beverages that have been flavored with koji.


May 31, 2024

Jesus Christ is an instantly recognizable figure, perhaps the most frequently depicted in all Western art. Since scripture does not provide a description of what Christ looked like, painters and mosaic-makers would often resort to the artistic canons of their time to create an image of the Nazarene. Renaissance art historian Elaine Ruffolo delves into some of the most impactful portrayals of Christ, uncovering how social, political, and religious contexts directly shaped the iconic image we recognize today. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


June 3, 2024

The earliest known copy of work by Archimedes. Gutenberg and other early Bibles and Muslim manuscripts. Historical astronomical plates. All these historical objects have been digitized by Michael B. Toth, president of R. B. Toth Associates, and his colleagues in humanities and science. Toth discusses ongoing work on historic objects and offers examples of texts and objects that have been digitized using the latest advanced imaging systems.


June 3, 2024

In the months leading up to D-Day, General Dwight D. Eisenhower projected optimism about the massive undertaking but was aware that failure was always a possibility. Author Michel Paradis examines how Eisenhower’s qualities as a leader shaped the strategic planning of Operation Overlord—which led to D-Day and the liberation of France—focusing on the six months preceding the mission when he grew from a widely respected general into one of the singular figures of American history.


June 4, 2024

From the late 1920s through the end of World War II, Hollywood studios dominated film production throughout the world. Despite the economic problems posed by the Depression, several studios produced more than 50 movies a year, including some of the best-loved and most significant films ever made. Media historian Brian Rose examines the forces that made Hollywood the giant of global filmmaking and the special nature of its achievements during its Golden Age.