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Lecture: Rick Doblin
Rick Doblin

Monday, April 9, 2012

7:00 pm  ::  Weinstein Auditorium, Wright Hall

Rick Doblin, Ph.D., founder and executive director of MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies) will discuss the applications of psychedelics for the betterment of "normal" individuals and for those suffering from hard-to-treat illnesses in a range of contexts such as therapeutic, spiritual, creative, recreational, and athletic.  MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for posttraumatic stress disorder is in some cases a more effective treatment than traditional pharmacotherapy or psychotherapy alone.  MDMA is also great for couples therapy and shows promise in individuals with autism/Aspeger's. Psychedelic-assisted therapy is promising for alleviating end-of-life anxiety. Ibogaine and ayahuasca treatment can be effective for people struggling with addiction. What makes psychedelics effective adjuncts to therapy and if they are effective then why are they still so taboo in our culture? In which contexts are the benefits overshadowed by the risks? In a post-prohibition world, what would psychedelic harm reduction look like? Doblin will cover all of these topics in order to introduce the concept that the Drug War is a fundamental assault on the most basic human rights of the freedom of mind (thoughts and emotions) and freedom of religion/spirituality.

Presented by the Kahn Institute 2012-2013 project Altering Bodies & Minds. Free and open to the public.

For more information on the Altering Bodies & Minds project:

For more information on MAPS:

For more information on Rick Doblin:

Lecture: Anna Munster
Anna Munster

Thursday, April 26, 2012

4:30 pm  ::  Neilson Browsing Room, Neilson Library

For William James, experience is loosely wrought, hanging together through relations of proximity between things and beings as they bump together, pass into one another, sediment and transition. Anna Munster, Associate Professor of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia will discuss her approach toward networks using James’s emphasis on relations as the most immediately felt or sensed aspect of experience. She will examine his “though-image” of the mosaic and his explication of the relation of “witness” as demonstration in artistic responses to contemporary networked experience.

Presented by the Kahn Liberal Arts Institute Project Renaissances: A Multiplicity of Rebirths. Free and open to the public.

For more information on the Renaissances project:

For more information on Anna Munster:

Film screening: Waxworks with Peter Krasinski
Organist Peter Krasinski

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

7:30 pm  ::  John M. Greene Hall (JMG)

Award-winning organist Peter Krasinski will improvise live music to accompany the German silent-film classic, Waxworks, at 7:30 pm on February 15 in JMG. Waxworks is the story of a poet hired to write startling tales about three wax figures depicting Harun al Raschid, Ivan the Terrible, and Jack the Ripper. The result is a strange blend of comedy and horror. Krasinski’s musical interpretation—to be performed on JMG’s pipe organ—draws on traditional techniques used in accompanying silent films.

Presented by the Kahn Liberal Arts Institute project Evil. Free and open to the public.

For more information on the Evil project:

For more information on the film Waxworks:

For more information on Peter Krasinski:

Concert: The Music of Erich Zann
Clifton J. Noble, Jr.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

7:00 pm  ::  Sweeney Concert Hall, Sage Hall

This concert will feature the world premiere of The Music of Erich Zann by Clifton J. Noble, Jr. and other music related to his research in the Kahn Institute's 2011-2012 colloquium Evil.  The original composition for solo violin, chamber orchestra, and electronics, is based on a short story by H. P. Lovecraft bearing the same title. The concert will also present a collection of works in various styles for various instruments spanning several centuries from the era of Roman Catholic chant to the excesses of 21st-century heavy metal.

Presented by the Kahn Liberal Arts Institute project Evil. Free and open to the public.

For more information on the Evil project:

For the electronic text of H. P. Lovecraft's story:

For more information on Clifton J. Noble, Jr.:

Panel Discussion: When Worlds Collide: Biology and Mathematics
Evelyn Fox Keller

Saturday, March 3, 2012

10:15-11:45 am  ::  Neilson Browsing Room, Neilson Library

The last two decades have witnessed a renaissance in the application of mathematics to biological problems—one so dramatic as to suggest a major realignment of these traditionally disparate disciplines. This panel will explore the promises and limits of the changes currently taking place. Panelists will include Nessy Tania, Mathematics & Statistics, Smith College; Walter Fontana, Systems Biology, Harvard Medical School; and Richard Lewontin, Organismic & Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University. The Respondent will be 2012 Neilson Professor Evelyn Fox-Keller, History & Philosophy of Science, MIT, and the Moderator will be Robert Dorit, Biological Sciences, Smith College.

Presented as a collaboration between the Kahn Liberal Arts Institute, The Four College Biomathematics Consortium, and the Smith Neilson Visiting Professor Program. Free and open to the public.

For more information on Evelyn Fox-Keller and her work:

For more information on the Smith Biomathematical Sciences Concentration:

For more information on the Four Colleges Biomathematical Consortium:




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