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News Release

Lecture Series to focus on Environmental Linkages in Science, Nature, and the Arts

Bethlehem, Pa., September 24, 2008— Moravian College will hold an interdisciplinary lecture series this fall to get people thinking more deeply about a variety of environmental issues. The series will illustrate how science, literature, and art are interconnected.

Over the last two years, faculty in the Department of Biological Sciences have been pondering ways to make science more approachable and engaging to students—while dispelling misconceptions about science and technology which are often formed by the media and misunderstood by the public. Concurrent with these conversations has been dialogue on how science fits into the liberal arts.  An outgrowth of this thinking has led Professors Diane Husic, (Biology Dept.) and Joyce Hinnefeld, (English Dept.) to develop an interdisciplinary lecture series for fall 2008 that will include 4 speakers who exemplify the connections between the “Two Cultures,” the arts and the sciences (as coined by C.P. Snow).

The series begins when Colette Palamar, director of Environmental Studies and of the Herndon Gallery at Antioch College, presents "Art as Activism: Education without Confrontation," on Thursday, September 25, 7:00 p.m. in the UBC Room, Haupert Union Building. Palamar will discuss themes related to environment, dwelling, and the human impact on nature that are prevalent in her art work for which she uses a variety of mediums including painting, ceramics, and photography. Palamar's exhibit “ecologies: a retrospective of works by colette palamar 1996-2008” will be on display from September 22 through October 13 in the HUB and in the lobby of Collier Hall of Science.

Naturalist Scott Weidensaul, author of more than two dozen books on natural history, will present a public lecture on Thursday, October 23 at 7:00 p.m., in Prosser Auditorium, Haupert Union Building. Most notably, he has penned Living on the Wind: Across the Hemisphere with Migratory Birds, a Pulitzer Prize finalist; The Ghost with Trembling Wings, about the search for species that may or may not be extinct; Return to Wild America: A Yearlong Search for the Continent's Natural Soul, an ambitious journey to take the pulse of America's wildlife and wildlands, retracing the steps of Roger Tory Peterson who had completed the same journey 50 years previously, and his most recent book, Of a Feather: A Brief History of American Birding, which traces 400 years of ornithological history.  His talk will include a wide-ranging exploration of the ways science and creativity intersect, and how both realms must speak more clearly to one another as we search for ways to preserve the planet.

Author Akiko Busch will conduct "A reading from Nine Ways to Cross a River" on  Wednesday, November 12, at 4 p.m. in the UBC Room, Haupert Union Building .  Busch writes about design and culture. She is the author of Geography of Home: Writings on Where We Live and The Uncommon Life of Common Objects:  Essays on Design and the Everyday. Her most recent book of essays, Nine Ways to Cross a River, is a collection of essays about swimming across American Rivers.  A contributing editor at Metropolis magazine for 20 years, she has taught at the Hartford Art School at the University of Hartford and Bennington College. Currently, she is a regular contributor to the New York Times Sunday regional section.

The last in the series will feature Joyce Hinnefeld, associate professor of English at Moravian College, who will read from her novel, In Hovering Flight— just published by Unbridled Books. The reading will be held on Monday, December 1, at 7 p.m. in Arena Theater, Haupert Union Building (HUB). In Hovering Flight is about mothers, daughters and art; about illness, death and burial; about fragile ecosystems and tenacious human relationships—all explored through characters inspired by the lives, and particularly the songs, of birds.

The lecture series is supported by the Zinzendorf Society, Department of Biological Sciences, Moravian College Arts and Lectures Committee, the Learning in Common Committee, and the Dean's Office. For more information, call 610-861-1491 or visit http://www.moravian.edu/events/tempemail/environmentallectures.htm.