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Upcoming Lectures

To be scheduled

Past Lectures

In April 2013

Journalist Kim BarkerKim Barker

From Montana to Afghanistan: Covering Conflict and the Clash of Culture

Former Chicago Tribune South Asia bureau chief Kim Barker covered major stories such as the assassination of Benazir Bhutto and rising militancy in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Now a reporter for ProPublica, Barker spoke about her life’s work in journalism and read from her book, The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

In January 2013

Charles A. S. Hall

The Need for a Biophysical Approach to Economics

Syracuse University Professor Charles A.S. Hall., the author of Energy and the Wealth of Nations: Understanding the Biophysical Economy, explained why economic models provide unreliable forecasts for the future of civilization.

In November 2012

Benedict R.O’G. Anderson

Nationalism: Change in Consciousness or Fiction?

Benedict R.O’G. Anderson is Aaron L. Binenkorb Professor of International Studies Emeritus at Cornell University. His Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origins and Spread of Nationalism is widely considered one of the most influential books of the late 20th century. Anderson is among the foremost comparative scholars of contemporary Southeast Asia and global studies. His pathbreaking book-length works on the Philippines, Indonesia, and Thailand, as well as an array of highly influential articles, have opened up broad new areas of research.

In April 2012

Adrian Nicole LeBlanc

Random Family

Adrian Nicole LeBlanc is the author of the New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice book Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx. She discussed her nonfiction book and experiences as a narrative journalist.

In March 2012

Joseph Stiglitz

Where long-term and short-term goals converge: Using sustainability as an impetus for economic growth

World-renowned economist Nobel laureate and New York Times best-selling author Joseph Stiglitz previously served as Chairman on the Council of Economic Advisers for the Clinton administration and as Chief Economist and Senior Vice President for the World Bank. He also advises the Obama administration.

In August 2011

Claude Onizuka

Remembering the Challenger: Celebrating the Life and Career of Ellison S. Onizuka

Claude Onizuka, the brother of Hawai‘i-born NASA astronaut Ellison S. Onizuka, presented a lecture on his life and legacy. As an astronaut, Ellison Onizuka’s first mission was on STS 51C in January 1985—the first Department of Defense mission that orbited the Earth 48 times, logging a total of 74 hours in space. On his second mission, Colonel Onizuka served as a mission specialist on board the Orbiter Challenger mission 51L that launched from Kennedy Space Center on January 28, 1986. The seven-person crew died when the Challenger exploded 1 minute and 13 seconds after launch at 11:30 A.M. EST. He was posthumously awarded the Congressional Space Medal of Honor.

In November 2010

Frances Moore Lappé

Facts/Myths of World Hunger: Politics of Scarcity

Frances Moore Lappé is the founder of the Small Planet Institute and author of 18 books including three-million selling Diet for a Small Planet. In 1987, she received the Right Livelihood Award for describing the political aspects of world hunger and proposing how ordinary people can work to resolve hunger. She is the recipient of 17 honorary doctorates, and her work has been translated into 20 languages. Her most recent book, Getting a Grip: Clarity and Courage for the World We Really Want, was released in March 2010.

In October/November 2009

Jeff WidenerJeff Widener

Public lecture: Unseen Hawaiʻi
Friday, October 30, 2009, 7:00 pm
Keoni Auditorium, East-West Center, UH Mānoa

Seminar: Unseen Hawaiʻi cont’d
Monday, November 2, 2009, 12:00 pm
ʻOhana Room, East-West Center, UH Mānoa

Jeff Widener is best known for his now iconic image of a lone man confronting a column of tanks in Tiananmen Square during the 1989 Beijing riots which made him a nominated finalist for the 1990 Pulitzer.

The “Tank Picture,” repeatedly circulated around the globe, (except in China where it is banned) is now widely held to be one of the most recognized photos ever taken. America On-Line selected it as one of the top ten most famous images of all time.

Jeff grew up in Southern California where he attended Los Angeles Pierce College and Moorpark College majoring in photojournalism. In 1974 he received the Kodak Scholastic National Photography Scholarship beating out 8000 students from across the United States. The prize included a study tour of East Africa.

In 1978 Widener started work as a newspaper photographer in California and later in Nevada and Indiana. At age 25 he accepted a position in Brussels, Belgium as a staff photographer with United Press International. His first foreign assignment was the Solidarity riots in Poland.

Through the years, he has covered assignments in over 100 countries involving civil unrest and wars to social issues. He was the first photojournalist to file digital images from the South Pole. In 1989 he was hired on as Associated Press Picture Editor for Southeast Asia where he covered major stories in the region from the Gulf War to the Olympics. Other beats included East Timor, Afghanistan, Cambodia, Burma, Syria, Jordan, India, Laos, Vietnam, Pakistan to mention a few.

Widener has received numerous awards and honors from The Overseas Press Club, Pictures Of the Year International, NPPA Best Of Photojournalism, National Headliner Award, New York Press Club, Chia Award (Sardinia) and the Scoop Award (Angiers, France) along with a number of other local and international citations.

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No cosponsored involvement.

In April 2008

Bill McKibbenBill McKibben

Seminar: Building an International Climate Movement
Tuesday, April 15, 2008, 3:00 pm
Architecture Auditorium, UH Mānoa

Public lecture: Deep Economy: What the World Looks Like When We Take the Environment Seriously
Tuesday, April 15, 2008, 7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom, UH Mānoa

Bill McKibben is an activist, environmentalist, author, and the founder of and, international climate campaigns.  Bill writes about global warming, alternative energy, and the risks associated with human genetic engineering. Bill grew up in suburban Lexington, Massachusetts. He was president of the Harvard Crimson newspaper in college. Immediately after college he joined the New Yorker magazine as a staff writer, and wrote much of the “Talk of the Town” column from 1982 to early 1987. He quit the magazine when its longtime editor William Shawn was forced out of his job, and soon moved to the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York.

His first book, The End of Nature, was published in 1989. Regarded as the first book for a general audience about climate change, and printed in more than 20 languages. Several editions have come out in the United States, including an updated version published in 2006.

His second book, The Age of Missing Information, was published in 1992. McKibben collected everything that came across the 100 channels of cable TV on the Fairfax, Virginia system (at the time among the nation's largest) for a single day. He spent a year watching the 2,400 hours of videotape, and then compared it to a day spent on the mountaintop near his home. This book has been widely used in colleges and high schools.

Subsequent books include Hope, Human and Wild, about Curitiba, Brazil and Kerala, India, which he cites as examples of people living more lightly on the earth; The Comforting Whirlwind: God, Job, and the Scale of Creation, which is about the Book of Job and the environment; Maybe One, about human population; Long Distance: A Year of Living Strenuously, about a year spent training for endurance events at an elite level; Enough, about what he sees as the existential dangers of genetic engineering; Wandering Home, about a long solo hiking trip from his current home in the mountains east of Lake Champlain in Ripton, Vermont back to his longtime neighborhood of the Adirondacks.

In March 2007, McKibben published Deep Economy: the Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future. It addresses what the author sees as shortcomings of the growth economy and envisions a transition to more local-scale enterprise.  March 2008 saw the publication of The Bill McKibben Reader, a collection of 44 essays written for various publications over the past 25 years.

Bill is a frequent contributor to various magazines including The New York Times, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper's, Orion Magazine, Mother Jones, The New York Review of Books, Granta, Rolling Stone, and Outside. He is also a board member and contributor to Grist Magazine.  He has been awarded Guggenheim and Lyndhurst Fellowships, and won the Lannan Prize for nonfiction writing in 2000. He has honorary degrees from Green Mountain College, Unity College, Lebanon Valley College and Sterling College.

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Co-sponsored by the Environmental Center, UH Mānoa

Stephen Greenblatt

Seminar: Mobility Studies
Stephen Greenblatt Friday, April 25, 2008, 3:00 pm
Architecture Auditorium, UH Mānoa

Public lecture: Shakespearean Beauty Marks
Thursday, April 24, 2008, 7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom, UH Mānoa

Stephen Greenblatt, Ph.D., is a literary critic, theorist, and scholar.  Greenblatt is regarded by many as one of the founders of New Historicism, a set of critical practices that he often refers to as “cultural poetics”; his works have been influential since the early 1980s when he introduced the term.  Greenblatt has written and edited numerous books and articles relevant to new historicism, the study of culture, Renaissance studies and Shakespeare studies and is considered to be an expert in these fields. His most popular work is Will in the World, a biography of Shakespeare that was on the New York Times Best Seller list for nine weeks.

He is also co-founder of the literary-cultural journal Representations, which often publishes articles by new historicists.  Dr. Greenblatt shares many anecdotes about his academic and non-academic experiences in interviews and in his writing.  He was born in Boston and raised in Cambridge, Massachusetts. After graduating from Newton High School, he was educated at Yale University (B.A. 1964, M.Phil 1968, Ph.D. 1969 and Pembroke College, Cambridge (B.A. 1966, M.A. 1968). Greenblatt has since taught at University of California, Berkeley and Harvard University. He was Class of 1932 Professor at Berkeley (he became a full professor in 1980) and taught there for 28 years before taking a position at Harvard University where in 1997 Greenblatt became the Harry Levin Professor of Literature; he was named John Cogan University Professor of the Humanities in 2000. As a visiting professor and lecturer, Greenblatt has taught at such institutions as the universities of Berlin, the University of Florence, Kyoto University, the University of Oxford and Peking University. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and has been president of the Modern Language Association.

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Co-sponsored by the Department of English, UH Mānoa

In January 2007

Craig VenterCraig Venter

Public Lecture: The Ocean Genome: A Key to Earth's Habitability
Thursday, January 25, 7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom

Seminar: Genomes, Medicine, and the Environment
Wednesday, January 24, 3:00 - 5:30pm
Medical Education Building, Third Floor

J. Craig Venter, Ph.D., is regarded as one of leading scientists of the 21st century for his invaluable contributions in genomic research and is one of the country's most frequently cited scientists. He is Founder, Chairman and CEO of the J. Craig Venter Institute, a not-for-profit, research and support organization dedicated to human, Microbial, Plant and Environmental genomic research, the exploration of social and ethical issues in genomics, and to seeking alternative energy solutions through Genomics. The J. Craig Venter Institute has two divisions, the Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR), founded by Dr. Venter in 1992; and the Center for the Advancement of Genomics.

Dr. Venter began his formal education after a tour of duty as a Navy Corpsman, in Danang, Vietnam from 1967 to 1968. After earning both a Bachelor's degree in Biochemistry and a Ph.D. in Physiology and Pharmacology from the University of California at San Diego, he was appointed professor at the State University of New York at Buffalo and the Roswell Park Cancer Institute. In 1984, he moved to the National Institutes of Health campus where he pioneered a revolutionary new strategy for rapid gene discovery. At TIGR he and his team decoded the genome of the first free-living organism, the bacterium Haemophilus influenzae, using his new whole genome shotgun technique. TIGR has sequenced more than 50 genomes to date using Dr. Venter's techniques.

In 1998, Dr. Venter founded Celera Genomics to sequence the human genome. The successful completion of this research culminated with the February 2001 publication of the human genome in the journal, Science. He and his team at Celera also sequenced the fruit fly, mouse and rat genomes. Dr. Venter and his team at the Venter Institute continue to blaze new trails in genomics research and have recently published several important papers covering such areas as environmental genomics, synthetic genomics and the sequence and analysis of the dog genome.

Dr. Venter is the author of more than 200 research articles and is the recipient of numerous honorary degrees, public honors, and scientific awards. These include: the 2001 Paul Ehrlich and Ludwig Darmstaedter Prize, and the 2002 Gairdner Foundation International Award. Dr. Venter is a member of numerous prestigious scientific organizations including the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Society for Microbiology. In 2004 Dr. Venter was one of the first 38 people to be selected by Desmond Tutu as part of his Hands that Shape Humanity world exhibition.

Cosponsored by the Dept. of Oceanography and the John. A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaiʻi, Mānoa

In February 2007

Richard DawkinsRichard Dawkins

Public Lecture: Queerer Than We Can Suppose?: The Strangeness of Science
Tuesday, February 20, 7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom

Seminar: Is Evolution Predictable?
Wednesday, February 21, 3:30 pm -5:00 pm
Architecture Auditorium

Professor Richard Dawkins is the first holder of the newly endowed Charles Simonyi Chair in the Public Understanding of Science, and a Fellow of New College, at the University of Oxford. A graduate of Oxford, he did his doctorate under the Nobel-prize winning ethologist Niko Tinbergen. He has written numerous bestsellers on evolutionary biology, science, and religion; these include The Selfish Gene (1976; second edition, 1989), The Extended Phenotype (1982), The Blind Watchmaker (1986), River Out of Eden (1995), Climbing Mount Improbable (1996), Unweaving the Rainbow (1998), A Devil's Chaplain (2003), The Ancestor's Tale (2004), and The God Delusion (2006). Professor Dawkins has been awarded the International Cosmos Prize (1997), the Silver Medal of the Zoological Society of London (1989), the Royal Society's Michael Faraday Award (1990), the Nakayama Prize for Achievement in Human Science (1990), the Kistler Prize (2001), the Shakespeare Prize (2005), and Honorary Doctorates in both literature and science, and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature as well as a Fellow of the Royal Society.

Cosponsored by the College of Natural Sciences, Departments of Botany and Zoology, Lyon Arboretum, and the Center for Conservation Research and Training, University of Hawaiʻi, Mānoa

In March 2007

Richard AlleyRichard Alley

Public Lecture: Get Rich and Save the World: Global Warming, Peak Oil, and Our Future
Tuesday, March 13, 7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom

Seminar: Fraying at the Edges—Sea Level and the Bizarre Behavior of Ice Sheets
Thursday, March 15, 3:00 - 5:00 pm
Architecture 205

Richard Alley is the Evan Pugh Professor of Geosciences at Penn St. University. He is one of the world's leading climate researchers, and has spent numerous field seasons in both Antarctica and Greenland studying the waxing and waning of ice sheets. Dr. Alley has chaired a National Research Council study on Abrupt Climate Change, and serves, or has served, on other advisory panels and steering committees related to climate change. In additional to publishing numerous scholarly articles on climate change and Earth's recent climate history, Alley's popular book The Two-Mile Time Machine: Ice Cores, Abrupt Climate Change, and Our Future (Princeton University Press) provides a first hand account of his own work drilling the Greenland ice sheet, and places the results of his own work in the context of global climate change research. The book is the recipient of the 2001 Phi Beta Kappa Book Award in Science. In addition to being recognized as an exceptional scholar he is well known as a source of accessible public information about climate change, including appearance on TV (Nova, BBC), radio (NPR, Earth and Sky), and print outlets (New York Times, Time Magazine).

Portions modified from & PSU web pages.

Cosponsored by the Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of Hawaiʻi, Mānoa

In November 2007

P.J. E. PeeblesP.J.E. Peebles

Public lecture:
Discovering the Big Bang
Thursday, Nov. 15, 2007,7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom

Galaxy Formation: Puzzles and Resolutions
Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2007, 3:30 pm
Auditorium at the Institute for Astronomy
2680 Woodlawn Drive

P. J. E. (Jim) Peebles and Robert Dicke predicted that the birth of the universe would leave a residue, a faint glow of radio emission from the hot Big Bang. When this was confirmed in the early 1960s, cosmology was transformed from philosophy to science. Later, as evidence grew for the existence of dark matter, Peebles led the debate over where it is and how much of it there is. Thanks in large part to Peebles, we now understand that dark matter played a crucial role in the development of structure in the universe, and hence a crucial role in creating the conditions for life. Under Peebles' guidance for over four decades, cosmologists have developed a complex and increasingly compelling picture of the physical origins of the universe.

P. J. E. Peebles is the Albert Einstein Professor of Science Emeritus at Princeton University and has won many major prizes for his contributions to physics, including the Crafoord Prize and the prestigious Shaw Prize in Astronomy.

In January 2006

Steven Squyres (Cornell University)Steven Squyres

Principal investigator for the Mars Exploration Rover Project

Thursday, January 19, 7:00pm
Campus Center Ballroom

Dr. Steven Squyres is the Goldwin Smith Professor of Astronomy in Cornell University’s astronomy department. His research focuses on the large solid bodies of the solar system—the terrestrial planets and the satellites of the Jovian planets. Squyres has participated in numerous planetary space flight missions. He was an associate of the Voyager imaging science team, a radar investigator on the Magellan mission to Venus, a member of the Mars Odyssey gamma-ray spectrometer fl ight investigation team, and a co-investigator on the Mars Express. Squyres is also currently the scientific principal investigator for the Mars Exploration Rover Project.

Cosponsored by the Hawaiʻi Institute of Geophysics and Planetology

Science results from the Mars Exploration Rover *Spirit*, will be held in Architecture 205. The time will be 3:30 pm.

In March 2006

Alexander McCall SmithAlexander McCall Smith

Author of The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, The Sunday Philosophy Club, and other works.

Public Lecture: On Being a Serial Novelist
Thursday, March 23, 7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom

Public Lecture: An Evening with Alexander McCall Smith: A Reading and Conversation
Friday, March 24, 7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom

Cosponsored by the Hawaiʻi Council of Teachers of English and Hawaiʻi Writing Project

In November 2005

General Eric Shinseki (ret.)Eric Shinseki

Former Chief of Staff of the U. S. Army

Public Lecture: Challenges in the Effective Use of Force
Tuesday, November 8, 7:00 pm
Campus Center Ballroom

Born in Līhuʻe, Kauaʻi in 1942, Gen. Eric Shinseki (ret.) has had a distinguished military career. He graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1965. (He also has a MA in English Literature from Duke University). He served in a number of command and staff assignments. These included two tours of duty in Vietnam, as well as postings in Hawaiʻi, Texas, Germany, and Italy. In 1997, he was appointed Commanding General United States Army Europe, and, in 1999, he became the 34th Chief of Staff of the United States Army, the only Japanese American to be promoted to that position. He was one of the principal architects of the Revolution in Military Affairs. He retired from the military in 2003.

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