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CUSP Distinguished Speaker Series 2018-19

The CUSP Distinguished Speaker Series follows an intellectual theme that is the foundation of our year-long inquiry. This year's talks explore the theme of “Lateness.” We will consider this theme within the fields of the arts and humanities, medicine, evolution, technology, counterterrorism intelligence, ethics, astronomy, disaster response, and post-crisis reconstruction.

2018-19 Theme: Lateness

Priority is the significance given to what is prior—to what comes first or manifests earlier. Beginnings, innovation, the precocious and avant-garde tend to attract notice, as an overture might feature a fanfare unheard in a postlude. What then is the music that comes later? Instead of priority, this year’s CUSP Distinguished Speaker Series will turn attention to manifestations of posteriority—of coming late or after. The series entitled “Lateness” will examine posteriority in the late phase of a continuum, on the one hand, or the aftermath of a historical rupture, on the other.

Latecoming within a continuum can raise the issues of belatedness, latency, limitation, or finality. In the arts, for example, lateness can manifest in the notion of “late style,” the idea that the work some artists produce toward the end of their careers reflects a conspicuous development from their earlier productions. What constitutes a “mature” creative phase in literature, music, and the visual arts? Late style may or may not coincide with late age. The concept of late age might more broadly apply to fields ranging from medicine to evolution and earth science, raising questions about the longevity and viability of biological life, on the one hand, or the geological age and habitability of Earth, on the other. It broaches ethical issues from end-of-life care and the “right to die” controversy to the global responsibility surrounding climate change.

When a late phase presents more of a departure from than continuity with the past, it may reflect a historical rupture. Posteriority thus concerns phenomena that are “post” such a break. What do these “post-phenomena” look like? What is the shape of an aftermath? An aftermath, for example, might take the form of anticlimax in post-apocalyptic literature or of efforts toward recovery in post-crisis reconstruction policy. Instead of resolution, an aftermath might encompass reverberations or echoes—aftershock. PTSD flashbacks in psychology, reproduction in postmodern aesthetics, or cultural appropriation in postcolonial politics may suggest such residual effects. Post-human discourse similarly traces the remains of humanity amidst technological advances in AI, robotics, and genetic engineering. Among these post-phenomena, the loss of a prior significance, while destabilizing, might nevertheless allow the possibility of new meaning. Lateness might then point to what is latest, or cutting-edge. Maturity might coincide with modernity, and the music of a postlude might sound the first notes of a prelude.

Upcoming Talks

John Leland Tuesday, November 27, 2018: It's Not Too Late to Start Living Like You're 90 “Alumni Journeys”

John Leland

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

John Leland
Journalist and Author

What's the secret to living a fuller, more content life? For John Leland, an award-winning New York Times reporter and author of the New York Times bestseller Happiness Is a Choice You Make: Lessons from a Year among the Oldest Old, the answer came from an unexpected place: from the lives of six people age 85 and up. He expected them to educate him in the hardships of old age. Instead, they taught him lessons of resilience, gratitude, purpose and perspective that apply to people of any age. All had lost something – spouses, mobility, their keen eyesight or hearing. But none had lost everything. And they defined their lives by the things they could still do, not by what they had lost. Sociologists call this the “paradox of aging”: as much as our culture obsesses over youth, older people are more content with their lives than young adults. They’re less stressed, less afraid of death, better able to manage whatever difficulties come their way – even when their lives are very, very hard. The good news about old age is that there is good news. And the better news is that we can all learn from our elders’ wisdom and experience. Whatever your age, it’s not too late to learn to think like an old person.


John Leland is a reporter at The New York Times, where he wrote a year-long series following six people age 85 and up, which became the basis for his new book, Happiness Is a Choice You Make: Lessons from a Year among the Oldest Old, a New York Times bestseller. Before joining The New York Times in 2000, he was a senior editor at Newsweek and editor-in-chief of Details magazine.

Sam Roberts Tuesday, January 29, 2019: Structural Violence and the War on Drugs: What History Can Tell Us About Race and the Current Opioid Crisis

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Check back soon for more information!


Dr. Samuel Kelton Roberts, Jr., is Associate Professor of History (School of Arts & Sciences) and Associate Professor of Sociomedical Sciences (Mailman School of Public Health) at Columbia University. He writes, teaches, and lectures widely on African-American history, medical and public health history, urban history, issues of policing and criminal justice, and the history of social movements. His book, Infectious Fear: Politics, Disease, and the Health Effects of Segregation (UNC Press, 2009), demonstrates the historical and continuing links between legal and de facto segregation and poor health outcomes. He sits on several boards for organizations working for social justice, health improvement, and arts and activism. In 2013-14, Dr. Roberts served as the Policy Director of Columbia University’s Justice Initiative, where he coordinated the efforts of several partners to bring attention to the issue of aging and the growing incarcerated elderly population. This work led to the publication of the widely-read landmark report, Aging in Prison Reducing Elder Incarceration and Promoting Public Safety (New York: Columbia University Center for Justice. November 2015.

Dr. Roberts, a 2017 recipient of the Lenfest Distinguished Faculty Award, and several times nominated for the Van Doren Teaching Award (not yet a winner!), brings innovative approaches to teaching through collaborative group partnerships with community organizations in which students may apply what they have learned in the classroom to the world beyond the gates. These classroom experiences include investigations of human rights and living conditions in New York’s arraignment court holding pens, public policy research informing campaigns for public health improvements in New York State prisons, and oral histories of substance abuse and addiction treatment.

As the Faculty in Residence for Columbia’s West Campus, Dr. Roberts brings fresh and community-building programming to campus. Many of his FIR events feature on and off-campus opportunities for West Campus residents to engage successful professionals working in environmental justice; medicine and public health; electoral politics; and gender, sexual, and racial justice.

Sunil Agrawal Tuesday, February 5, 2019: Robotics to Restore and Retrain Human Movements

Sunil Agrawal

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Sunil Agrawal
Professor and Director of Robotics and Rehabilitation (ROAR)

Neural disorders limit the ability of humans to perform activities of daily living. Robotics can be used to probe the human neuromuscular system and create new pathways to relearn, restore, and improve functional movements. Dr. Agrawal’s group at the Columbia University Robotics and Rehabilitation (ROAR) Laboratory has designed innovative robots for this purpose and tested these on human subjects. Human experiments have targeted patients with stroke, cerebral palsy, Parkinson’s disease, ALS, Vestibular disorders, elderly subjects and others. The talk will provide an overview of some of these scientific studies.


Sunil K. Agrawal received a Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University in 1990. He is currently a Professor and Director of Robotics and Rehabilitation (ROAR) Laboratory at Columbia University, located both in engineering and medical campuses of Columbia University. He has published close to 500 journal and conference papers. Dr. Agrawal is a Fellow of the ASME and AIMBE. His honors include a NSF Presidential Faculty Fellowship from the White House in 1994, a Bessel Prize from Germany in 2003, and a Humboldt US Senior Scientist Award in 2007. He is a recipient of 2016 Machine Design Award from ASME for “seminal contributions to design of robotic exoskeletons for gait training of stroke patients” and 2016 Mechanisms and Robotics Award from the ASME for “cumulative contributions and being an international leading figure in mechanical design and robotics.” He is a recipient of several Best Paper awards in ASME and IEEE sponsored robotics conferences. He has held positions of a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Hanyang University in Korea, a Professor of Robotics at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland, and a Visiting Professor at the Biorobotics Institute of SSSA in Pisa. He actively serves on editorial boards of conferences and journals published by the ASME, IEEE, and other professional societies.

Elaine Sisman Monday, February 11, 2019: Lateness: Historical, Biographical, Musical “Core Connections”

Elaine Sisman

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Elaine Sisman
The Anne Parsons Bender Professor of Music
Chair of Music Humanities

In the Core, we explore musical works written within different “life cycles”: historical eras, composers' careers, and the evolution of musical genres like opera and symphony. How do works reflect, embody, transcend, unsettle, or stand at a distance from their times and their audiences? After Beethoven’s musical expressions of struggle, passion, and heroism, composers had to deal with profound feelings of belatedness and an awkward relationship to the Kantian sublime. Yet Beethoven himself embodied all the contradictions and paradoxes of the overlapping Enlightenment, Revolutionary, Napoleonic, and Romantic eras he lived through, and his controversial late works divided listeners as never before. Are Beethoven’s works timeless or untimely?


Elaine Sisman is the Anne Parsons Bender Professor of Music and returning Chair of Music Humanities. Her research interests are the music of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven, issues of musical meaning and persuasion, biography and late style, and the Enlightenment imagination; her most recent publications are “Music and the Labyrinth of Melancholy” in the Oxford Handbook of Music and Disability Studies and “Is Don Giovanni Evil?” in Evil: A Philosophical History (Oxford Philosophical Concepts series). She has served as department chair and president of the American Musicological Society, and was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2014. At Columbia, she has received the Award for Distinguished Service to the Core Curriculum and the Great Teacher Award.

Souleymane Bachir Diagne Wednesday, February 20, 2019: Thinking (in) Our Post-Bandung World

Souleymane Bachir Diagne

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Souleymane Bachir Diagne
Professor of French and Romance Philology
Director of the Institute of African Studies

In 1955, a conference was organized in Bandung, Indonesia, between Asian and African countries, most of them already independent States, others, like Ghana (then called Gold Coast) fighting to end colonialism. The Bandung Conference was a milestone in the movement of decolonization that marked the end of the notion that imperial Europe represented universalism and therefore the model to which the rest of the world should strive to conform itself. Does that mean that in a post-Bandung world, a world of plurality of languages and cultures, all equivalent, the pursuit of universality is meaningless? That is the question this presentation will address, by examining in particular the opposition of many French intellectuals to “postcolonial studies” in the name of universalism..


Souleymane Bachir Diagne is a professor at Columbia University in the departments of French and Philosophy. He is currently the Director of the Institute of African Studies. His areas of research and publication include History of Philosophy, History of Logic and Mathematics, Islamic Philosophy, and African Philosophy and Literature.

His latest publications in English include Islam and the open society: Fidelity and Movement in Muhammad Iqbal’s Thought, Dakar, Codesria, 2010; African Art as Philosophy: Senghor, Bergson, and the Idea of Negritude, Seagull Books, 2011; The Ink of the Scholars: Reflections on Philosophy in Africa, Dakar, Codesria, 2016; Open to Reason: Muslim Philosophers in Conversation with Western Tradition, New York, Columbia University Press, 2018.

Teodolinda Barolini Thursday, February 28, 2019: Lateness as Regret — “Core Connections”

Teodolina Barolini

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Teodolinda Barolini
The Lorenzo Da Ponte Professor of Italian

Modernity as lateness – whereby “modern literature emerges as a kind of late style to the vigorous youth of Antiquity” (Hutchinson, Lateness and Modern European Literature) – is a familiar thought. But lateness occurs in all periods. In the Italian Trecento, we find an author who is quintessentially non-late: Dante, who lived from 1265 to 1321. And we find another author, Petrarch, born in 1304 while Dante was still alive, who embodies lateness. Perhaps this is why we consider Petrarch “modern,” accustomed as we are to associate lateness with modernity. In this talk, I will discuss the idea of lateness through the verses of these two great poets. One is the epitome of heroic present-ness, of lateness always already overcome. The other is the epitomy of lateness as regret.


Teodolinda Barolini is the Lorenzo Da Ponte Professor of Italian at Columbia University. A Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, the Medieval Academy of America, and the Accademia Olimpica (Vicenza), she was elected to Italy’s National Academy, the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, in 2018.

From 1997 to 2003, Professor Barolini served as fifteenth president of the Dante Society of America.

Barolini’s research focuses on thirteenth- and fourteenth-century Italian literary culture, its relation to classical antiquity, and its reception through the centuries to our own day. She has written widely on Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio, and the medieval lyric.

Dante’s Poets: Textuality and Truth in the ‘Comedy’ (Princeton, 1984; Italian trans. Il miglior fabbro: Dante e i poeti della ‘Commedia’, Bollati Boringhieri, 1993) won the Marraro Prize of the Modern Language Association and the John Nicholas Brown Prize of the Medieval Academy. The Undivine Comedy: Detheologizing Dante (Princeton, 1992; Italian trans. La Commedia senza Dio: Dante e la creazione di una realtà virtuale, Feltrinelli, 2003) looks at how Dante constructs a virtual reality in language in the light of his repeated truth claims, and sets out a method of reading—“detheologizing”—that counteracts the narrative structures that work to overdetermine our hermeneutic response to the poem. Dante and the Origins of Italian Literary Culture (Fordham, 2006; Italian trans. Bompiani, 2012) explores the origins of Italian literary culture through four prisms: “Philosophy of Desire”; “Christian and Pagan Intertexts”; “Ordering the Macrotext: Time and Narrative”; and “Gender.” This volume won the Premio Flaiano in italianistica in 2007.

Barolini’s commentary to Dante’s early lyric poetry, Rime giovanili e della ‘Vita Nuova’, was published by Rizzoli in 2009. This commentary reconstructs Dante’s poetic and ideological itinerary from its courtly beginnings to the Paradiso. Her expanded and revised English edition, with translations of Dante’s poetry by Richard Lansing, Dante’s Lyric Poetry: Lyrics of Youth and of the ‘Vita Nuova’, was published by the University of Toronto Press in 2014. It was awarded the Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Publication Award of the Modern Language Association for a Manuscript in Italian Literary Studies in 2012.

Editor of the website Digital Dante, Barolini is the author of the Commento Baroliniano, the first digital commentary to the Commedia, committed to an Aristotelian and non-dualist reading of Dante’s poem.

Sophie Hollingsworth Wednesday, March 13, 2019: Modern Explorer “Cool Jobs”

Sophie Hollingsworth

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Captain Sophie Hollingsworth
Founder of AquaAid International

With the tallest peaks climbed and the depths of the ocean reached, what is left to explore? Exploration is no longer about planting your nation’s flag in an uncharted territory or being the first to summit the world’s tallest mountains. Today, exploration is about increasing our knowledge and understanding of the world we live in and using that knowledge to help foster a more sustainable and just future. Sophie will challenge our assumptions and recount her amusing and poignant tales of transitioning from a ballerina to explorer with subsequent adventures/misadventures from the streets of Managua to the mountains of Madagascar.


Captain Sophie Hollingsworth is a former ballerina turned award-winning explorer using her passion for exploration to help forage a more sustainable future. Sophie is a Fulbright Scholar and earned a Bachelors in Environmental Science and Global Public Health from New York University. Sophie is an avid sailor, has sailed across the Pacific Ocean, and holds a 200-ton captains license. At the time of certification, she was the youngest female to ever obtain a 200-ton MCA Yachtmaster Captains License.

Sophie is the Founder of AquaAid International, a non-profit organization collaborating with some of the world’s most remote villages to design and implement sustainable sources of clean drinking water and basic sanitation. Her appetite for adventure and discovering indigenous ways of life has led her to paddle uncharted rivers in Madagascar, desert treks in Namibia, and ethnographic research in the Republic of Vanuatu. Sophie’s work has been featured by National Geographic and the United Nations. Sophie is a Fellow of The Explorers Club and Post-Graduate Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

Dave Zader Thursday, April 4, 2019: Water and Fire: Managing Natural Disasters in the 21st Century“Cool Jobs”

Dave Zader

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Location TBA

Dave Zader
Wildland Fire Administrator for the City of Boulder Fire Department

Natural disasters are growing in size and scope, why are these events getting larger? What are we doing about them? What are the after-effects of these events? How do we make meaningful change? What role does technology play? This talk will address the past, present, and future of Incident Management from the perspective of a 30-year veteran of Incident Management.


Dave Zader is the Wildland Fire Administrator for The City of Boulder Fire Department. Dave started his fire career in 1987 in Prince William County, Virginia, and has worked for the USFS, the Yosemite National Park as a Heli rappeler, and at multiple municipal fire departments. He has spent the last 11 Years with the Boulder Fire Department and works in Operations and Air Operations on local and national incident management teams. He is qualified as a Division Supervisor, Helibase Manager, Incident Commander, and Burn Boss. Dave was also the creator and author of the Boulder Structural Protection Plan. Dave teaches at numerous local, state and national courses.

Dave works very closely with national guard and active duty aviation units to help prepare them for firefighting and domestic operations. He has been awarded 2 medals of valor and numerous commendations throughout his career, and has served in many roles on large incidents from Hurricane Sandy to Colorado Floods, and the Boulder County Fourmile Fire. Dave has been involved in structural and wildland firefighting, search and rescue, technical rescue, hazardous materials, and incident management throughout his career. Dave has a passion for firefighting, aviation, technology, communications and graphical information sharing systems. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry and Wildlife Management from Virginia Tech.

Brian Greene — Topic TBA

Date and Location TBA

Please check back soon for more information!


Coming soon!

Past Talks

Gareth Williams — Friday, August 31, 2018: What's the Score with the Core? — “CUSP/ASP Annual NSOP Lecture

Gareth Williams

Gareth Williams
Department Chair and Violin Family Professor of Classics, Columbia University

Friday, August 31, 2018
9:00–11:00 a.m.
Skyline Ballroom, Faculty House

Gareth Williams will describe how the Core Curriculum contributes to your larger intellectual trajectory at Columbia; how it fits in with and strengthens the competencies that a Columbia education aims to foster; and what you can expect to find when you enter the classroom in such courses as Literature Humanities, Contemporary Civilization and the other Core offerings. A period of question and answer will follow the talk.


Gareth Williams has taught at Columbia since 1992. He received a Ph.D. in 1990 from Cambridge University for a dissertation on Ovid’s exilic writings that subsequently resulted in two books: the first, Banished Voices: Readings in Ovid’s Exile Poetry (Cambridge, 1994), and the second, The Curse of Exile: A Study of Ovid’s Ibis, Proceedings of the Cambridge Philological Society Supplementary Volume 19 (Cambridge, 1996). Two distinct research phases followed, the first of which focused on the Latin ethical writings of Lucius Annaeus Seneca. Two monographs resulted, the first an edition with commentary of L. Annaeus Seneca: Selected Moral Dialogues. De OtioDe Brevitate Vitae (Cambridge, 2003); the second, The Cosmic Viewpoint: A Study of Seneca’s Natural Questions (Oxford, 2012), was awarded the Goodwin Award of Merit by the Society for Classical Studies in 2014. Most recently, among various other projects and edited volumes in the area of Roman philosophy, his research has focused on the socio-literary culture of Renaissance Venice, an interest that recently resulted in the publication of Pietro Bembo on Etna: The Ascent of a Venetian Humanist (Oxford, 2017).

Bernard E. Harcourt — Wednesday, September 19, 2018: On the American Counterrevolution: The Long View of History in Politics and Law — “CUSP Inaugural Lecture”

Bernard Harcourt

6:00–8:00 p.m.
3rd Floor Lecture Room, Pulitzer Hall

Bernard E. Harcourt
Executive Director of the Eric H. Holder Jr. Initiative for Civil and Political Rights
The Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law
Professor of Political Science

Recent political events feel like spontaneous revolutions. With 24-hour news cycles, daily revelations, and viral Tweets, politics resembles today reality-TV and marches on the temporality of social media. But it brings with it new and radical ways of governing that have deep roots. Lurking beneath today’s rapid-fire politics and law, there is a longer, slower course of history, one that plants the seeds for what will come later, after the momentary crises. This keynote lecture will focus both on the emergence of the American Counterrevolution and the long-defense of a death row inmate to explore lateness in politics and law.


Bernard E. Harcourt is the Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law and Professor of Political Science at Columbia University. He is the Executive Director of the Eric H. Holder Initiative for Civil and Political Rights, and the founding director of the Columbia Center for Contemporary Critical Thought at Columbia University. He is also a Directeur d’études(chaired professor) at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris.

A contemporary critical theorist and social justice advocate, Harcourt is the author most recently of The Counterrevolution: How Our Government Went to War Against Its Own Citizens(Basic Books, 2018). Harcourt’s writings examine modes of governing in our punitive and surveillance society, especially in the post 9/11 period and the digital age. He traces the birth of what he calls our “expository society” and our recent turn to the paradigm of “counterinsurgency warfare” as a mode of governing. He is the author, recently as well, of Exposed: Desire and Disobedience in the Digital Age (Harvard 2015), The Illusion of Free Markets: Punishment and the Myth of Natural Order (Harvard 2011), and Occupy: Three Inquiries in Disobedience with Michael Taussig and W.J.T. Mitchell (Chicago 2013). Earlier books include Against Prediction: Profiling, Policing and Punishing in an Actuarial Age(Chicago 2007), Language of the Gun: Youth, Crime, and Public Policy (Chicago 2005), and Illusion of Order: The False Promise Of Broken Windows Policing (Harvard 2001).

Harcourt is also an editor of the works of Michel Foucault. He recently edited the French edition of Michel Foucault’s 1972-73 lectures at the Collège de France, La Société punitive(Gallimard 2013) and the 1971-1972 lectures, Theories et institutions pénales (Gallimard 2015). He is also the editor of the new Pléiade edition of Surveiller et punir in the collected works of Foucault at Gallimard (2016). He is co-editor of the lectures Foucault delivered at Louvain in 1981, in French and English, Wrong-Doing, Truth-Telling: The Function of Avowal in Justice (Chicago 2014). He is currently working on Foucault’s lectures on Nietzsche for the next series of lecture publications by Gallimard/Le Seuil.

A passionate advocate for justice, Harcourt started his legal career representing death row inmates, working with Bryan Stevenson at what is now the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama. He lived and worked in Montgomery for several years and still today continues to represent pro bono inmates sentenced to death and life imprisonment without parole. He recently resolved the case of death row inmate Doyle Hamm who was executed but survived the ordeal. He also served on human rights missions to South Africa and Guatemala, and actively challenged the Trump administration’s Muslim Ban, representing pro bono Syrian medical resident excluded under the executive order, as well as Moseb Zeiton, a Columbia SIPA student.

Sylvain Pascaud — Monday, October 1, 2018: Exploration and the Digital (R)evolution

Sylvan Pascaud

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Sylvain Pascaud
Managing Director, Executive Director and Expedition Leader of Libre Comme l'Air (LC) Productions

In 1985, the RMS Titanic was discovered at the bottom of the North Atlantic two and a half miles below the surface. That discovery was made with the equivalent of a torch light and a camcorder.

Thirty-five years later, the doomed Air France jet AF 447 was also found in the deep ocean, this time with the help of the latest digital autonomous robots, manned with acoustic imagery.

The digital revolution has impacted every aspect of the planet’s exploration; and we are only glimpsing the possibilities: from underwater robots to sophisticated drones and high-altitude solar vehicles, technology will enable us to go deeper and understand more about how our planet works than ever before. It will catapult us into a future we could not have imagined only decades ago. And it will also provide a key to preserving our place on that planet.


For the past fifteen years, Sylvain Pascaud has served as Managing Director, Executive Director and Expedition Leader of Libre Comme l'Air (LC) Productions, a documentary film production company specializing in adventure, science and technology. LCL has developed projects with prestigious partners such as the Airbus Group, the National Geographic Society, Columbia University, The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, Dassault Systèmes, and others.

More recently, Shelter Expeditions, a spin-off company, was incorporated in the United States to develop, manage, and finance some of the scientific and technology-based expeditions that underpin the films produced by LCL.

Sylvain began his career at the French Maritime Institute, Ifremer, onboard The Nautile research submarine. From there he moved to the Cousteau Society, where he conducted expeditions from The Calypso. Pascaud continued to work as an independent underwater cameraman and commercial diver and evolved to producing and directing films and TV series, as well as managing expeditions. To date he has over 100 documentaries to his name, aired worldwide.

Highlights of his career include organization of the Titanic 96 expedition, the first scientific investigation into the structure of the great sunken ship. The three-part series Titanic: Anatomy of a Disaster was produced by Canal Plus Group and the Discovery Channel and aired worldwide.

Pascaud was appointed by Airbus as Project Manager for the production of the international TV series (2003-2009) on the design, construction, flight test and delivery of the Airbus 380, the largest commercial airliner in the world. He was also instrumental in several phases of the search for AF 447, the Rio to Paris flight that disappeared in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, and managed the final phase of the search project that resulted in finding the debris field in 2011.

He then assumed development, project management and expedition leadership for D-Day's Sunken Secrets, a two-month underwater expedition to survey and study D-Day wrecks off the coast of Normandy. This project was conceived as a tribute to veterans for the 70th anniversary of the Normandy landing in 2014. The documentary film, based on the expedition and featuring a 3D reconstruction of D-Day wrecks and of Mulberry Harbor, was aired in 20 countries worldwide.

More recently, Pascaud has been involved with the video coverage and media outreach for the E FAN electric plane project, which featured a cross-channel crossing in 2015. He is also working with Airbus and high-profile scientific institutions to develop the Airbridge for Science project, a unique endeavor to support cutting-edge research on climate change.

Ann Temkin — Tuesday, October 16, 2018: The Long Run: Artists at Mid and Late Career

Museum of Modern Art

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Ann Temkin
The Marie-Josée and Henry Kravis Chief Curator of Painting and Sculpture at The Museum of Modern Art

The Long Run, an exhibition from the MoMA’s collection, chronicles the continued experimentation of artists long after their breakthrough moments as young newcomers. It celebrates the inventiveness that results from sustained critical thinking, persistent observation, and countless hours in the studio. The vibrancy of the artworks refutes the notion that creativity diminishes with age. They champion the reality that great artists never stop exploring and taking risks. They also attest to the mysterious and beautiful fact that what may appear to be repetition is nothing of the kind: to face what will be one’s next work of art is always an encounter with the new.


Ann Temkin is The Marie-Josée and Henry Kravis Chief Curator of Painting and Sculpture at The Museum of Modern Art. Most recently she co-curated the exhibitions Studio Visit: Selected Gifts from Agnes Gund (2018), Picasso Sculpture (2015), Robert Gober: The Heart Is Not a Metaphor (2014), and Jasper Johns: Regrets (2014)She is currently deeply involved with planning the collection displays for MoMA’s expanded galleries (2019) as well as preparing an exhibition of the work of Donald Judd (2020). From 1990 to 2003, Ms. Temkin was the Muriel and Philip Berman Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Her major exhibitions there included Barnett Newman (2002), Alice Neel (2001), and Constantin Brancusi (1995). Ms. Temkin received her BA from Harvard University and her PhD in the history of art from Yale University.

Emily Silverman — Wednesday, October 31, 2018: Storytelling, Medicine and the End of Life

Emily Silverman

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Emily Silverman
Academic Hospitalist at the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital

Founded in 2016 by Emily Silverman, MD, The Nocturnists began as a scrappy gathering of medical residents sharing intimate, personal stories about life in medicine. Today, it is a popular live storytelling event for sold-out audiences of health care professionals in the Bay Area (with plans for a show in New York City on 10/30/18), and growing podcast. In this talk, Emily will walk the audience through her awakening to the power of storytelling, how it transformed her approach to medicine, and how it helps health workers - who must hold their patients' experience of illness, suffering, and death - to heal and connect.


Emily Silverman grew up an only child in the suburbs of Miami, Florida. Fascinated by the human body in elementary school, she devoured Magic School Bus books and idolized her pediatrician, Dr. Keller. She went to Brown University for college, where she majored in History of Art and Architecture, briefly flirting with a career in the art world before heading down the pre-med path. She went to medical school at Johns Hopkins University, and completed her internal medicine residency at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). Currently, Emily is an academic hospitalist at the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, where she seeks out projects that resurrect the narrative soul of medicine. She is the host and creator of The Nocturnists, a live storytelling event and podcast for physicians and other health care workers. She wrote a series of prose poems about her experiences as a medical resident, and is working on her first book. Her writing is animated by a deep-seated curiosity about science, human nature, and what it means to live and die well. In her spare time she enjoys teaching herself electric guitar, listening to podcasts, and traveling with her husband Boaz. She tweets @ESilvermanMD.


Jeffrey Kluger and Marsha Ivins — Tuesday, November 13, 2018: Onward to Mars! (Eventually)

Jeffrey Kluger

6:00-8:00 p.m.
Davis Auditorium, Schapiro CEPSR

Jeffrey Kluger, Editor-at-Large for Time and
Marsha Ivins, Retired Astronaut and Five-Time Space Shuttle Veteran

NASA and official Washington love to say that America is going to Mars. The problem is, we’ve been going to Mars for the past fifty years—we just never get there. Why is that? How could the United States go from a standing start in 1961—with no American ever having been in space—to the Sea of Tranquility in 1969? And why are the resources that made that possible missing now? Jeffrey Kluger, co-author of Apollo 13 and Time magazine's Editor-at-Large, and Marsha Ivins, retired astronaut and five-time space shuttle veteran, will discuss what the nation needs to make a Mars landing happen, and why a widely agreed-upon national dream has been deferred for so long.


Jeffrey Kluger is the Editor-at-Large for Time magazine and, principally covering science and social issues. His most recent nonfiction book is Apollo 8: The Thrilling Story of the First Mission to the Moon, which was published in May 2017. His most recent novel is Freedom Stone, a young-adult tale set on a South Carolina plantation in 1863, published in 2011. He is the author of seven other books, including Apollo 13—coauthored with Jim Lovell—which served as the basis of the 1995 movie of the same name. He is also the Executive Producer of Time’s Emmy Award-winning “Year in Space” series, which appeared both on and on PBS. In his time at Time, Kluger has written hundreds of stories, including more than 40 cover stories. He has appeared regularly on CBS This MorningThe Today ShowGood Morning America, CNN, MSNBC and others. He has also made guest appearances on The Colbert Report and Late Night With Seth Meyers.

Marsha Ivins retired from NASA in 2010 after a 37-year career as an engineer and astronaut. After graduating from the University of Colorado with a BS in Aerospace Engineering, Marsha began her employment with the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX in 1974, working in human factors and man-machine engineering on the development of Orbiter cockpit layout, displays and controls, and the Head-Up Display. In 1980, Marsha was assigned as a flight engineer on the Shuttle Training Aircraft and as a pilot on the NASA administrative aircraft. She holds a multi-engine Airline Transport Pilot License with Gulfstream-1 type rating, single engine airplane, land, sea, and glider commercial licenses, and airplane, instrument, and glider flight instructor ratings. She has logged over 7,000 hours in civilian and NASA aircraft.

Marsha was selected as an astronaut in the class of 1984 as a Mission Specialist. A veteran of five space flights (STS-32 in 1990, STS-46 in 1992, STS-62 in 1994, STS-81 in 1997, and STS-98 in 2001), she has logged over 1,318 hours in space.

During her tenure in the Astronaut Office, Marsha supported the Space Shuttle and Space Station programs in all areas of operational crew interface, and was the Astronaut Office expert in flight crew equipment, habitability, imagery, and stowage. In her last 4 years with the agency, Marsha led the Astronaut Office team supporting the Constellation Program and the Commercial Crew Development initiative.

Today Marsha works as an independent engineering consultant.

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