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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

Science & Nature Programs

Course
Monday, December 6, 2021 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

In a 3-session evening series, historian Justin M. Jacobs presents in-depth overviews of three particularly intriguing UNESCO World Heritage sites. This session focuses on the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks.

Lecture/Seminar
Monday, December 6, 2021 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Explore a spectacular land of fire and ice in a virtual field trip led by volcanologist Kirt Kempter, who spotlights the key features that make Iceland a bucket-list destination for all geologists.

Lecture/Seminar
Tuesday, December 7, 2021 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Hear from representatives of the National Audubon Society and the Smithsonian’s National Zoo about new and upcoming projects that offer insights into the world of trees and the birds that inhabit them. Get an overview of the latest Audubon field guides to North American birds and trees, preview the transformation of the zoo’s Bird House, and learn how you can help birds by creating and encouraging bird-friendly spaces in your own community.

Lecture/Seminar
Sunday, December 12, 2021 - 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET

The landscape of Florida is unlike any other in the United States. Deciduous forests give way to subtropical wetlands, savannahs, and emerald palm-lined beaches. Join interpretive naturalist and popular tour leader Keith Tomlinson on a journey around the best of the peninsula that highlights some of the best places to hike, swim, and camp.

Course
Monday, December 13, 2021 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

In a 3-session evening series, historian Justin M. Jacobs presents in-depth overviews of three particularly intriguing UNESCO World Heritage sites. This session focuses on the Redwood National and State Parks.

Lecture/Seminar
Friday, December 17, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

As a young man, Leonardo da Vinci wrote about finding the skeleton of a great “fish” while roaming in the hills of Tuscany. What followed was decades of interest in fossils and informed speculation about the planet’s history. Biologist Kay Etheridge examines how this fascination with fossils is reflected in his artworks.

Lecture/Seminar
Sunday, January 9, 2022 - 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET

One of the world’s most striking natural wonders, Yosemite National Park is much more than “the valley.” Keith Tomlinson, an interpretive naturalist and popular tour leader, examines the area’s glacial history, plant life, emerging climate issues, and distinctive topography.

Lecture/Seminar
Thursday, January 13, 2022 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

The saga of our home planet is far more spectacular than any Hollywood blockbuster (Boiling seas of lava! Meteor strikes! Towering sheets of ice!). But only recently have we begun to piece together the whole mystery into a coherent narrative. Andrew H. Knoll, a geologist and professor at Harvard University, offers a short biography of Earth, charting its epic 4.6-billion-year story and placing 21st-century climate change in deep context.

Lecture/Seminar
Saturday, January 22, 2022 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

Humans are obviously part of the animal kingdom in many important ways, and yet they exhibit features and activities that set them apart from other species. Philosophy professor Michael Gorman leads a fascinating exploration into the nature of what makes us uniquely human, touching on topics including consciousness, free will, morality, and the duality of body and soul.

Lecture/Seminar
Tuesday, February 1, 2022 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Virtual reality technology is advancing fast. Many predict that a "Metaverse" of virtual worlds will be the next stage of the Internet. Drawing on his new book Reality+, philosopher David Chalmers examines this technology, the nature of reality, and our place within it.

Lecture/Seminar
Wednesday, February 9, 2022 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Vertebrate zoologist and author Bill Schutt traces the evolution of hearts and circulatory systems in the animal kingdom, as well as our understanding of the anatomy, physiology and symbolic significance of human hearts throughout history.

Lecture/Seminar
Thursday, February 10, 2022 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

The emergence of genomic science in the last quarter century has revolutionized medicine, the justice system, and our understanding of who we are. Harvard University professor Jennifer Hochschild examines its politically charged and hotly contested issues.

Course
Sunday, February 13, 2022 - 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET

Indulge in a colorful midwinter escape as horticultural experts lead a series of virtual visits that highlight the beauty of notable botanical gardens. This program spotlights the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens in the Colorado Rockies and Western Australia Botanic Garden.

Course
Sunday, February 20, 2022 - 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET

Indulge in a colorful midwinter escape as horticultural experts lead a series of virtual visits that highlight the beauty of notable botanical gardens. This program spotlights Chenshan Botanical Gardens in Shanghai and Huntsville Botanical Garden in Alabama.

Course
Sunday, February 27, 2022 - 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. ET

Indulge in a colorful midwinter escape as horticultural experts lead a series of virtual visits that highlight the beauty of notable botanical gardens. This program spotlights Innisfree in New York and Fairchild Tropical Garden in Florida.

Lecture/Seminar
Wednesday, March 30, 2022 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Up until the 1960s, recurring epidemics were simply a normal fact of daily life, always lurking in the background. Historian Allen Pietrobon highlights some of the lesser-known pandemics and epidemics, revealing how people throughout history dealt with such sudden disease outbreaks.