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University events and lectures Preview/Review

A preview and review of U events and lectures, Sept. 15-29

Compiled by Adam Overland

MN Women 165

September 14, 2010


Exhibit celebrates Women’s Center's 50th anniversary

It's not often these days that you see newspaper headlines like "Sensitivity training offends faculty" or "Sex in the classroom coming out into the open." Advice columnist and psychologist Joyce Brothers (now nearly 85) has not recently told the wives association of Minnesota Lawyers, like she did in 1964, that in order to persuade their husbands they must "convey their ideas in the first 11 minutes of conversing, because after that a man has a closed mind when it comes to his wife." Headlines have changed, in no small part thanks to the U of M's Women's Center.

Fifty years ago, in 1960, the U's Women's Center was founded as the Minnesota Plan for the Continuing Education of Women. The first of its kind on a university campus, it was created to address the needs of women who returned to college after having children. The center has advocated for older women attending college and women's liberation, and worked on issues like wage disparity and sexual harassment. And it continues to serve as an example for college women’s centers across the country. People at the Women's Center still have work to do, but that doesn't mean they can't stop and celebrate their rich history with an exhibit opening Sept. 15.

I took a sneak peek at the exhibit with curator and associate librarian Kimberly Clarke. Clarke spent hundreds of hours searching through that rich history, evidence of which was stored in more than 30 boxes in the deep caverns of Andersen Library before Clarke dug it up.

Kim Clarke 165 Kim Clarke Clarke spent hundreds of hours in the enforced silence of the reading room (archived materials may not leave that room) pouring over media clippings, artifacts from the work of memorable and influential people, curriculum and program innovations, and more.

Clarke put the time and effort into the exhibit because, she says, the Women's Center has a story to tell, and things don't change simply with the passage of time alone. "I think it's important to let people know that these things don't just happen—it takes the time, and the commitment of women—and men."

The exhibit opens with a reception Sept. 15, 4:30 p.m., Andersen Library, atrium gallery. Speakers will include Wendy Pradt Lougee, University librarian; Kris Lockhart, associate vice president in the Office for Equity and Diversity; Gayle Graham Yates, president of the Friends of the University Library and founder of the University's Women's Studies program; Anitra Cottledge, Women’s Center assistant director; and Peg Lonnquist, the center’s director.

First Fridays Libraries' event: A special panel discussion, "Living Legends Reflect: Working toward Women’s Equity on Campus," will take place Oct. 1, noon, 120 Andersen Library. The discussion will feature former Women’s Center leadership, including Jessica Morgan, Claire Walter-Marchetti and Don Opitz. To be followed by a 3 p.m. 50th anniversary homecoming and networking gala at McNamara Alumni Center, featuring keynote remarks by Nancy "Rusty" Barceló, president of Northern New Mexico College and former U vice president and vice provost for Equity and Diversity.

--review by Adam Overland, with Jeff Falk.


Hubert Humphrey: The Art of the Possible, Sept. 15, 6:30-9 p.m., Ted Mann Concert Hall. Free, but registration is required. Filmmaker Mick Caouette spent almost a decade making this moving, no-holds-barred documentary about one of America's greatest legislators: Hubert H. Humphrey. He interviewed dozens of friends and colleagues to render a portrait of a public servant who is as inspirational today as he was when he served his community and his nation as mayor of Minneapolis, U.S. senator, and vice president of the United States. The screening will be followed by a conversation with Bill Moyers, White House press secretary during the Johnson administration; Norm Sherman, Humphrey's press secretary during his vice presidency; and Geri Joseph, Humphrey’s lifelong friend. 

Gubernatorial Forums: Scheduled Forums: Tom Emmer (GOP) and Tom Horner (IP). Cowles Auditorium, Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs. Senator Mark Dayton (DFL) spoke at the U on Sept. 13, and sadly, Preview/Review missed it. You still have a chance to see two other candidates for Minnesota governor:

Representative Tom Emmer (GOP), Sept. 15, 1-2 p.m.
Tom Horner (IP), Sept. 20, noon-1:15 p.m.

Toxic Japan 165Toxic Archipelago: Industrial Pollution in Japan: A talk by Brett Walker, Sept. 16, 4-5:30 p.m., 125 Nolte. Free, open to the public. One of the coolest things about working at the U involves the naming of things, from courses to research collaboratives. For example, "The HumanNonhuman Research Collaborative" is a group that does not, as I had assumed, include robots as part of its core membership. Instead, they are roughly 20 living and breathing U faculty from a wide range of disciplines that encourage interdisciplinary projects and contemplation of the complex interconnections and imaginations of the human, animal, and environment.

With that, they bring us "Toxic Archipelago," an exploration by Montana State University professor Brett Walker of the relationship between the causes of colossal toxic pollution and the manner in which pain caused by pollution insults porous human bodies. He examines 19th-century Japan, which saw the rise of Homo sapiens industrialis, a new breed of human who was transformed by an engineered, industrialized, and poisonous environment. 

Apples and Pumpkins at Autumn Unplugged: Pumpkin Palooza! Sept. 18, Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. If you have an apple emergency, do not panic, because the Arboretum maintains an AppleHouse Hotline at 952-443-1409. You can call them up and learn which of the more than 50 varieties, from long-time favorites to recent U of M introductions, are ripe and ready for sale at the AppleHouse, located 1.5 miles west of the Arboretum entrance in Chanhassen on State Highway 5 and Rolling Acres Road.Apples 165

This year's family fun Autumn Unplugged season starts Sept. 18 with apple tastings at the Oswald Visitor Center the weekend of Sept. 18-19 and continuing every weekend through Oct. 10 from 1 to 3 p.m.

Pumpkin Palooza begins Sept. 25, and this year will feature 83 varieties of pumpkins, squash, and gourds in all sizes, shapes, and colors inside the Oswald Visitor Center and on the grounds, through Oct. 31. 

Misel Family Public Lecture: Spooky Actions at a Distance? Sept. 21, 7-8:30 p.m., Memorial Hall, McNamara Alumni Center. Free. Einstein's real complaint about the quantum theory was not that it required God to play dice, but that it failed to "represent a reality in time and space, free from spooky actions at a distance." N. David Mermin, Cornell University, will use the rhetorical device of a computer-simulated lecture demonstration (a cartoon version of experiments in Vienna) to explain both the appeal of Einstein's criticism and the remarkable fact that the "reality" he insisted upon is nevertheless impossible.

University of Minnesota Farmers Market, Sept. 22, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Church Street. If you thought the Farmers Market ended when the academic year began, think again—this local food is power for the brain, and the U's Farmers Market on the East Bank's Church Street continues every Wednesday, rain or shine, through Oct. 6. Get your peppers while they're hot.

Frontiers in the Environment: "Biochemical Bloodhounds: Using Enzymes to Detect Toxins," featuring Larry Wackett, Distinguished McKnight Professor, BioTechnology Institute. Sept. 22, noon-1 p.m., IonE Seminar Room R380, VoTech Bldg., St. Paul campus or via UMConnect. The fall 2010 Frontiers in the Environment lecture series begins again every Wednesday at noon. Upcoming lectures include "Hooked on Halorespiration: How, Where, and So What?" with Paige Novak, associate professor, Civil Engineering; "Eight-Track Tapes, Compact Discs and Solar Cells" with Eray Aydil, professor, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, and more.

Outdoor Salsa Party, Sept. 24, 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m., Northrop Memorial Auditorium. Free. To help celebrate Northrop's new season and Mexico 2010 (Bicentennial of the Independence of Mexico and the Centennial of the Mexican Revolution in collaboration with the Consulate of Mexico in Saint Paul, MN.), Charanga Tropical returns after being the highlight of the 2010 Summer at Northrop Music Series. The popular nine-piece ensemble features three violins, flute, and a sizzling Latin rhythm section. Star Tribune raves about the group's "distinctive Caribbean sound" while City Pages calls the group "a musical delight and a visual spectacle."

Their music is rich in harmony and melody, fantastic for listening, and—best of all—superb for dancing. The outdoor dance party will feature some of the best salsa dancers from the Twin Cities, but you don't have to be good to dance. Dancers of all ages are welcome! Food and drinks will be available for purchase.

Gopherfest and T-Shirt Swap, Sept. 27, 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Northrop Plaza. The U of M is so happy to have you here, yet you continue to wear your University of Wisconsin sweater to work. Make the leap and go gopher at the annual Homecoming T-Shirt Swap. Just bring a t-shirt from another college and swap it out for a U of M t-shirt (while supplies last). Bring a non-perishable food item to this event to benefit the Emergency Food Shelf Network as part of Homecoming's Stuff the Truck event.

Homecoming Blood Drive, Sept. 29, 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Great Hall and Mississippi Room, Coffman Union. Free—Yes, it's free to give blood. And do you really need it all anyway? Vampire movies are en vogue today, but the people you'll be helping really do need your blood to stay alive. Help the American Red Cross and your community by donating blood. It's quick and easy!

The U's Elaine Tyler May discuses America and the Pill, Sept. 29, 4-5 p.m., Bookstore, Coffman Union. The Pill turns 50 this year and Regents Professor Elaine Tyler May recounts the lively history of oral contraception in her new book. As the U's Deane Morrison wrote in a feature story earlier this year, "When approved by the Food and Drug Administration 50 years ago, the birth control pill was hailed as the great liberator of women and the antidote to poverty, overpopulation, unhappy marriages, abortion, unwed motherhood, and the spread of Communism. Others called it a marriage-killer, a spawner of licentiousness, and a Communist plot. Today the pill has become a staple of contraception. But it's been a rough ride." May will sign copies of her book following the discussion. 

Find more Twin Cities events using the U's events calendar.

University events and lectures preview/review is a periodic column (about every two weeks) highlighting events and lectures recently past and soon-to-come on the UMTC campus. Faculty and staff are invited to contribute. Preview submissions should be no more than 450 words, reviews 150 or fewer. Both are subject to review by the Brief editor.