Smithsonian Associates Presents October Program Highlights

October 4, 2018
News Release
Pencils for Grammatical Gaffes

Grammatical Gaffes: A Linguist Looks at Language Peeves on October 18

The October issue of the Smithsonian Associates’ program guide features a variety of educational and cultural programs, including seminars, lectures, studio arts classes, performances for adults and children and local and regional study tours. Highlights this month include:

Novelist Jodi Picoult: Her Latest Tough Topic
Wednesday, Oct. 3; 6:45 p.m.
National Museum of Natural History, Baird Auditorium
Author Jodi Picoult discusses her career, the sources of her storyline inspirations, her writing process and why the issues she tackles in her latest novel A Spark of Light spoke to her as a writer. Picoult will be joined in conversation by Senator Maggie Hassan.

Grammatical Gaffes: A Linguist Looks at Language Peeves
Thursday, Oct. 18; 6:45 p.m.
National Museum of Natural History, Baird Auditorium
From her perspective as a historian of the English language, linguist Anne Curzan examines some of the most common peeves in grammar, including “between you and I,” the new(ish) verbs “to impact” and “to verse,” the use of “that” for “who” in reference to people, dangling modifiers and the use of “less” for “fewer.” Curzan explains how she handles these usage questions as a member of the American Heritage Dictionary Usage panel and as an academic writer and copy editor.

Evolution in Warp Drive: The Science of Star Trek
Thursday, Oct. 18; 6:45 p.m.
Smithsonian’s S. Dillon Ripley Center
Professor Mohamed Noor explores the possibility of humanoid or other forms of life on other planets. Drawing on relevant scenes from the Star Trek series, he presents evidence for the existence of a common ancestor for life on Earth and clarifies misconceptions about evolutionary biology. Noor discusses the science of evolution and how people might use modern evolutionary approaches to understand the origins of extraterrestrial life— if and when such life is found.

Morbid Curiosity: Presidential Last Moments Preserved
Monday, Oct. 22; 6:45 p.m.
Smithsonian’s S. Dillon Ripley Center
Sara Murphy and Bethanee Bemis, museum specialists in the division of political history at the National Museum of American History take a fascinating look into American history and how people remember their fallen leaders. They uncover some of the extraordinary stuff of presidential death in the museum’s collections, exploring what was saved and why in this program.

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SI-545-2018

Media Only

Lauren Lyons

(202) 633-8614

lyonsl@si.edu