For the intellectual insatiables, the Harvard community has attracted the regular slew of impressive people talking about Important Issues that we should all feel a Kantian obligation to rush out and learn about instead of going to happy hours and reading second-hand from Newsweek.
If one wants to abstain from the usual undergraduate bacchanalia, a good way to start the penitence would be to converse--Friday night, April 7 at 8:45 p.m.--with Yosef Yerushalm, professor of Hebrew and Jewish History, at a Harvard-Radcliffe Hillel Sabath Table Talk. The subject of discussion will be "Jewish Life in America and the East European Model."
If that doesn't particularly grab you, have fun this weekend but make a mental note to take in a few lectures scheduled for next week that look promising.
Tuesday April 11, Giorgio Napolitano, leader in the Italian Communist Party will speak on the political and economic crisis in Italy in Emerson 105 at 8 p.m. In the wake of the recent kidnapping of former Prime Minister Aldo Moro and other acts of violence by terrorists (or freedom fighters, depending on your perspective), the talk should be tinged with a measure of emotion and immediacy.
Although the Italian Communist Party has condemned the recent acts of terrorism, it has the most to benefit from the fear pervading the country. While on one hand the Communist Party assuages the fear that it condones such violence giving the party an air of respectability, on the other hand forces outside the party make it clear that the Christian Democrats must relinquish more power.
The general tone of the lecture is predictable: the crisis of capitalism and the inevitability of the demise of an inherently exploitative system. The fact that this usual Communist dogma can be translated into a real social situation in Italy should make this talk one of the best for next week.
If foreign class conflict and byzantine political plots aren't your thing, Stuart Eizenstat will talk Monday, April 10 on "Prospects for Urban America: A View From The White House" in Room 100 at 5 p.m. at Longfellow Hall.
This talk is also timely considering the unveiling last week of the Carter Administration's new urban policy formulated by Eizenstat, Carter's chief domestic advisor.
The policy includes an incentive program for states to channel more money to urban areas--partly by retargeting federal money given to states to finance unemployment insurance programs--and calls for the creation of a National Development Bank that could loan up to $11 billion to cities to spur business and development.
Thomas Szasz will speak April 11 at Ford Hall in Boston on "The Myth of Mental Illness." If you're feeling like you're the only sane person in an absurd world, this could be therapeutic.
Margaret Atwood will lecture Friday, April 7 in Science Center B. Also Friday, Leo Mildenberg, a reknowned numismatist from Zurich will talk about "Master Coin Forgeries" at the Fogg at 3 p.m.
Sunday April 9 Lesley Stahl, a CBS news reporter, will speak at Ames Courtroom in Austin Hall at 2 p.m. as part of the Law School Forum. Admission will cost $1.50.
John Hill, former deputy administrator of the Federal Energy Administration will speak April 10 at 4:30 p.m. in Science Center D on "The Politics of U.S. Energy."
Wednesday April 12 at 4 p.m. Janal M Ahmed, Center for Middle Eastern Studies fellow and ex-foreign minister of Sudan will speak at Coolidge Hall seminar room 2 on "The Powers in the Horn of Africa." Also, April 12 Derrick Bell, professor of law, will preak on "The Educational Legacy of DuBois" at 77 Dunster St.