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.: Dibner Library Symposium and Dibner Library Lecture

SIL hosts Symposium on the History of Scientific Expansion

The Smithsonian Institution Libraries will host a two-day symposium titled “The Era of Experiments and the Age of Wonder: Scientific Expansion in the 17th – 19th Centuries” on March 4 and 5 in the National Museum of American History. This celebration marks the re-opening of the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology, one of the Libraries’ two rare book and manuscript facilities. Honored guest lecturers include British historian Richard Holmes, Harvard professor Conevery Bolton Valencius and Smithsonian Under Secretary for Science Eva J. Pell. This symposium is open to the public.

March 4-5, 2010
Carmichael Auditorium
National Museum of American History, Kenneth J. Behring Center

Draft of Program and Schedule (pdf)

Please RSVP by February 28, 2010 at 202.633.1522 or silrsvp@si.edu. For information regarding hotel lodging, or if you need accomodations due to a disability, contact the Smithsonian Libraries at 202.633.1522 or obriene@si.edu.

Major Speakers:

Dr. Eva J. Pell, Under Secretary for Science, Smithsonian Institution. A distinguished plant pathologist, Dr. Pell was formerly Senior Vice President for Research and Dean of the Graduate School at Pennsylvania State University and has a strong background in environmental science.

The 17th Dibner Library Lecture will be given by British author Dr. Richard Holmes, whose book, The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science (2008), was short-listed for the BBC Samuel Johnson Prize for Nonfiction. The award-winning biographer of Shelley and Coleridge, in this book Holmes examines the life and work of the scientists of the Early Romantic Age who laid the foundations of modern science. The book has been praised for “reading like a thrilling detective story.”

Dr. Conevery Bolton Valencius is affiliated with the Department of History of Science at Harvard University. Her first book, The Health of the Country: How American Settlers Understood Themselves and their Land (2002), won the George Perkins Marsh Prize for the best book in environmental history. She has published on the Lewis & Clark Expedition, and the medical writings of novelist Anton Chekhov.

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