Evolution writer to speak, International Festival keynote

This week’s lectures cover a broad range of topics, including a new science book, an Israeli film, and the keynote address of the International Festival.

Title: “The First Human: The Race to Discover Our Earliest Ancestors”

The Basics: Anne Gibbons will present a lecture about her recent book. The book chronicles a race between researchers to find the earliest ancestors and fill in the “missing links” between humans and apes. Gibbons has written for more than a decade for Science magazine, specializing in writing about evolution. Before this, Gibbons wrote for newspapers in San Diego and Palo Alto, Calif., and has written articles for The New York Times, Discover, Insight travel guides, and other publications. She also taught science writing in Carnegie Mellon’s English department.
When: Today at 4:30 p.m.
Where: Adamson Wing, Baker Hall 136A

Title: “The Journey of Vaan Nguyen”

The Basics: Israeli filmmaker Duki Dror will introduce and screen his film The Journey of Vaan Nguyen. The film is about the experiences of a Vietnamese family that found refuge in Israel after the fall of Saigon and their efforts to return to Vietnam. The film portrays the agony of being suspended between two civilizations without being fully at home in either one. The film is in Hebrew and Vietnamese with English subtitles.
When: Tuesday at 4 p.m.
Where: Room G13, the Cathedral of Learning, University of Pittsburgh

Title: “Frankenstein and Other ‘Monstrosities’: A History of Congenital Malfor-mations”

The Basics: The C.F. Reynolds Medical History Society and the Honors College of the University of Pittsburgh are presenting their 13th annual Sylvan E. Stool History of Medicine lecture this week. The key speaker will be Stephanie Brown Clark, M.D., Ph.D., of the Division of Medical Humanities at the University of Rochester School of Medicine. Clark examines
the medical explanations of congenital malformations or “monstrosities” at the turn of the 19th century and the literary explorations of monstrosity in Mary Shelley’s novel, Frankenstein.
When: Thursday at 6 p.m.
Where: University of Pittsburgh’s Scaife Hall, Lecture Room 5

Title: “Living in a World Without Borders”

The Basics: This year’s International Festival keynote lecture is presented by Richard Heinzl. In 1988, only recently out of medical school, Heinzl founded Doctors Without Borders Canada, and in 1990 he became the organization’s first field volunteer. Heinzl’s presentation will discuss the ability we all have to make a difference in this world and will serve
as a how-to guide for organizations wanting to become more committed to their culture and more global in their outlook. Tickets for the lecture are free and will be available at the University Center Information Desk. Lunch will be included for all attendees.
When: Friday at 12:30 p.m.
Where: Rangos Ballroom, University Center