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Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square

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700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States
617-536-5400 http://www.bpl.org/

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September 2017

Beyond Mr. Darcy: A panel discussion with romance authors Damon Suede, Farrah Rochon, and Sarina Bowen

September 14, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

The Boston Public Library is pleased to host Beyond Mr. Darcy: New Markets in Romance. Damon Suede grew up out-n-proud in conservative America. Though new to romance fiction, Suede has been writing for print, stage, and screen for two decades. He’s won some awards, but counts his blessings more often: his amazing friends, his beautiful husband, and his loyal fans. USA Today bestselling author Farrah Rochon hails from a small town just west of New Orleans. She has garnered much acclaim for…

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LENORA CHU, author of Little Soldiers: An American Boy, a Chinese School, and the Global Race to Achieve

September 23, 2017 | 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

The Boston Public Library is pleased to host journalist LENORA CHU for a rare glimpse inside China’s insular education system. In her book, Little Soldiers, she uses her parenting journey to launch a wider investigation into whether China’s educational methods are something to which the West should aspire. Chu is an award-winning journalist and a contributing writer with CNNMoney.com. Her articles have appeared in the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, and PRI’s The World. Chu holds degrees from Stanford…

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Dr. ANDREW BUDSON, co-author of Seven Steps to Managing Your Memory: What’s Normal, What’s Not, and What to Do About It

September 28, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

The Boston Public Library hosts Dr. ANDREW BUDSON author of Seven Steps to Managing Your Memory. In this book, coauthored by MAUREEN K. O'CONNOR Psy.D, Dr. BUDSON distinguishes between normal and abnormal memory failure, how to get your memory evaluated and how treating and strengthening your memory can help you plan for your future. Educated at Haverford College and Harvard Medical School, Dr. Budson is professor of neurology at Boston University, lecturer in neurology at Harvard Medical School, and chief of…

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October 2017

The Health of Newcomers: Immigration, Health Policy, and the Case for Global Solidarity

October 12, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

Immigration and health care are hotly debated issues. Policies that relate to both issues—to the health of newcomers—often reflect misimpressions about immigrants and their impact on health care systems. The Boston Public Library is pleased to welcome WENDY E. PARMET and PATRICIA ILLINGWORTH, authors of The Health of Newcomers, which draws on rigorous legal and ethical arguments as well as personal stories to make the compelling case that global phenomena such as poverty, the medical brain drain, organ tourism, and climate change ought…

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Authors CLAIRE MCMILLAN (The Necklace) and DENISE KIERNAN (The Last Castle) at the Boston Public Library

October 14, 2017 | 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

A stunning inheritance stirs up old jealousies in CLAIRE MCMILLAN’s The Necklace, which alternates between past and present to link two women—a bewitching Jazz Age beauty and a young lawyer— to a spectacular Indian necklace and an even more valuable secret. DENISE KIERNAN’s The Last Castle explores the true story behind the magnificent Gilded Age mansion Biltmore—the largest, grandest residence ever built in the United States. McMillan is the author of Gilded Age, inspired by Edith Wharton’s House of Mirth.…

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Make Way for Ducklings Sculptor NANCY SCHON in conversation with ANITA DIAMANT

October 19, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

NANCY SCHON is best-known for her iconic Make Way for Ducklings sculpture in Boston’s Public Gar­den. Based on Robert McCloskey’s book and visited by thousands of children and adults every year, it has become a beloved Boston landmark. In Make Way for Nancy, Schön explores her major public projects and com­missions, what inspired them, and what goes into making a beautiful and tactile work of public art. Schön will be interviewed by ANITA DIAMANT, author of The Red Tent and…

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Dr. FREDERICK DOUGLASS OPIE, author of Southern Food and Civil Rights

October 23, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

From home cooks and professional chefs to local eateries and bakeries, food has helped activists continue marching for change for generations. Paschal’s Restaurant in Atlanta provided safety and comfort food for civil rights leaders; Elijah Muhammad and the Nation of Islam operated their own farms, dairies, and bakeries in the 1960s; “The Sandwich Brigade” organized efforts to feed the thousands at the March on Washington. Dr. FREDERICK DOUGLASS OPIE details the ways southern food nourished the fight for freedom along with…

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ERICA FERENCIK, author The River at Night

October 26, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

The Boston Public Library is pleased to host ERICA FERENCIK, author of The River at Night. The River at Night is set against the harsh beauty of the Maine wilderness, charts the journey of four friends as they fight to survive the aftermath of a white water rafting accident. With intimately observed characters, visceral prose, and pacing as ruthless as the river itself, ERICA FERENCIK explores creatures both friend and foe. ERICA FERENCIK has an MFA in creative writing from Boston University. Her…

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November 2017

Journalist/Author MAUREEN BOYLE on the “New Bedford Highway Serial Killer”

November 2, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

Eleven women went missing over the spring and summer of 1988 in New Bedford, Massachusetts, an old fishing port known as the Whaling City, where Moby Dick, Frederick Douglass, textile mills, and heroin dealing are just a few of the many threads in the community’s diverse fabric. In Shallow Graves, investigative reporter MAUREEN BOYLE tells the story of a case that has haunted New England for forty years. Boyle, an award-winning journalist, has been a crime reporter in New England for…

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PAUL LEWIS: A is for Asteroids, Z is for Zombies: A Bedtime Book about the Coming Apocalypse

November 4, 2017 | 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm

The Boston Public Library is pleased to host local author/Boston historian PAUL LEWIS. Paul Lewis’s fascination with gothic fiction and horror films prepared him to publish “The Funeral Game” in Crazy Magazine while he was in graduate school, coin the word “Frankenfood” at the dawn of the GMO era, and write A Is for Asteroids, Z Is for Zombies as gallows humor for a time of global threats. In the spirit of taking these threats seriously while also finding relief…

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LAURA YOUNG, author of “Boston Ballerina: A Dancer, a Company, an Era”

November 16, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

Boston Ballerina is both a memoir of LAURA YOUNG’s personal journey and a fascinating account of Boston Ballet’s rise from a regional troupe to the internationally recognized company that it is today. It is interspersed with ruminations on the history of ballet, stories from the company’s Balanchine-influenced early years under founder E. Virginia Williams, and recollections from noteworthy tours, including those featuring the legendary Rudolf Nureyev, with whom Young was frequently paired. Young was a company dancer in the Boston…

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You’re in the Wrong Bathroom! A Discussion of the Myths and Misconceptions about Transgender and Gender-Nonconforming People

November 18, 2017 | 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

Between 2010 and 2016, at least 111 transgender and gender-nonconforming Americans were murdered according to a study by Mic, especially transgender and gender-nonconforming people of color; meanwhile, TGNC youth face bullying from families, peers, and outsiders. Though there has been prolific media coverage of the lives of Laverne Cox, Janet Mock, and Caitlyn Jenner, harmful and inaccurate beliefs about the transgender community still permeate society. LAURA ERICKSON-SCHROTH and LAURA JACOBS bring together the medical, social, psychological, and political aspects of being transgender today and…

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December 2017

JESSICA KEENER, author of Strangers in Budapest, in conversation with RISA MILLER

December 7, 2017 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Commonwealth Salon, Boston Public Library, Central Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116 United States

In JESSICA KEENER’s atmospheric and intricately woven novel, a young American couple and their infant son move to the mysterious city of Budapest. Eight months into their stay, they receive a secretive request from friends in the United States to check in on a Jewish American World War II veteran JESSICA KEENER is the author of the national bestselling novel Night Swim and a collection of award-winning short stories, Women in Bed. Her work has appeared in O, Redbook, and…

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January 2018

JOHN HECHINGER, author of “True Gentlemen: The Broken Pledge of America’s Fraternities” at the Boston Public Library

January 25, 2018 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

In True Gentlemen, JOHN HECHINGER embarks on a deep investigation of Sigma Alpha Epsilon―a national fraternity with more than 15,000 undergraduate brothers spread over 230 chapters nationwide―and fraternity culture generally. He exposes the vast gulf between fraternity culture’s founding ideals and the realities of its impact on colleges and the world at large while making a case for how deeply needed reform can happen. HECHINGER, a senior editor at Bloomberg News, is a 2011 finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for…

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March 2018

KELLY BARNHILL, author of “Dreadful Young Ladies: And Other Stories” at the Boston Public Library

March 6, 2018 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Award-winning, New York Times-bestselling author KELLY BARNHILL’s short fiction collection teems with uncanny characters whose stories unfold in worlds at once strikingly human and eerily original. The stories in Dreadful Young Ladies feature bold, reality-bending fantasy underscored by rich universal themes of love, death, jealousy, and hope. Barnhill lives in Minnesota with her husband and three children. She is the author of four novels, most recently The Girl Who Drank the Moon, winner of the 2017 John Newbery Medal for…

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PAUL-GORDON CHANDLER, Author of “In Search of a Prophet: A Spiritual Journey with Kahlil Gibran” at the Boston Public Library

March 8, 2018 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

In Search of a Prophet is a journey through the all-embracing spirituality of Kahlil Gibran, author of the bestselling book The Prophet. PAUL-GORDON CHANDLER explores this beloved writer, poet-artist, mystic, and unparalleled guide in the midst of today’s global challenges. CHANDLER is an author, interfaith advocate, art curator, Episcopal priest, and social entrepreneur who has lived and worked in the Middle East and North Africa for many years. An authority on the Middle East and on Christian-Muslim relations, from 2003–2013…

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July 2018

JANE WILLAN at the Boston Public Library

July 12, 2018 | 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Free

A charming and clever traditional mystery debut set at a bucolic Welsh convent, The Shadow of Death introduces Sister Agatha, a mystery-loving nun who finds herself in the midst of a real-life murder case. Reverend JANE WILLAN is a parish minister and author in Paxton, Massachusetts. She serves the First Congregational Church of Paxton and lives in the church parsonage with her husband Don and their two rescue dogs, Magi and Moses.

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September 2018

ANNE BOYD RIOUX: Author of Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy

September 12, 2018 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

On its 150th anniversary, discover the story of the beloved classic that has captured the imaginations of generations. Soon after publication on September 30, 1868, Little Women became an enormous bestseller and one of America’s favorite novels. Its popularity quickly spread throughout the world, and the book has become an international classic. When Anne Boyd Rioux read the novel in her twenties, she had a powerful reaction to the story. Through teaching the book, she has seen the same effect on many…

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October 2018

TIM MOHR, author of Burning Down the Haus: Punk Rock, Revolution, and the Fall of the Berlin Wall

October 4, 2018 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Renowned music journalist and award-winning German-language translator Tim Mohr tells the little-known story of a group of East German kids who rebelled and helped set the world on fire. Mohr takes readers on a fascinating trip through the 1980s, as these teens defy the dictatorship, rejecting the dismal, pre-ordained futures that the state tries to impose on them by embracing the aesthetic, music, and liberating feeling of collective anarchy of punk. Banding together, they faced down surveillance, repression, beatings, and…

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COREY BRETTSCHNEIDER, author of The Oath and the Office: A Guide to the Constitution for Future Presidents

October 18, 2018 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

This is a guide to the presidential powers and limits of the Constitution, for anyone voting—or running—for our highest office. Can the president launch a nuclear attack without congressional approval? Is it ever a crime to criticize the president? Can states legally resist a president's executive order? In today's fraught political climate, it often seems as if we must become constitutional law scholars in order to simply understand the news from Washington, let alone make a responsible decision at the…

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November 2018

Thrill Me, Chill Me: Mystery Writers Panel at the Boston Public Library

November 28, 2018 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Join critically acclaimed authors Hank Phillippi Ryan, Peter Swanson, Kellye Garrett, and Paula Munier in conversation about the enduring thrill and lure of mysteries, and what makes them so appealing on the page and on the screen. Hank Phillipi Ryan is an on-air investigative reporter for Boston's WHDH-TV, winning 34 Emmys and dozens of additional journalism honors. The nationally bestselling author of 10 mysteries, she is also an award-winner in her second profession—with five Agathas, two Anthonys, two Macavitys, the…

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February 2019

Joanna Schaffhausen in conversation with Hank Phillippi Ryan at the BPL

February 5, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Police officer Ellery Hathaway and FBI profiler Reed Markham take on two difficult new cases in this stunning follow-up to The Vanishing Season.  "A gripping and powerful read. It is what we call an edge-of-your-seat, rollercoaster of a thriller. You will not be able to put it down before you finish it."—The Washington Book Review on The Vanishing Season. Police officer Ellery Hathaway is on involuntary leave from her job because she shot a murderer in cold blood and refuses…

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Ayesha Harruna Attah in conversation with Zoë Gadegbeku at the BPL

February 26, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Aminah lives an idyllic life until she is brutally separated from her home and forced on a journey that turns her from a daydreamer into a resilient woman. Wurche, the willful daughter of a chief, is desperate to play an important role in her father's court. These two women's lives converge as infighting among Wurche's people threatens the region, during the height of the slave trade at the end of the 19th century. Set in pre-colonial Ghana, The Hundred Wells of…

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March 2019

Reading with Lauren Wilkinson at the BPL

March 4, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

1986: It’s the heart of the Cold War, and Marie is working as an intelligence officer with the FBI. She’s brilliant and dedicated to her job, but she's also a young black woman working in an old boys’ club, and her career has stalled out; she's overlooked for every high profile squad, and her days are filled with monotonous paperwork. So when she’s given the opportunity to join a shadowy task force aimed at undermining Thomas Sankara, the charismatic, revolutionary…

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Reading with Patrick Reddan Keefe at the BPL

March 9, 2019 | 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Free

In December 1972, Jean McConville, a thirty-eight-year-old mother of ten, was dragged from her Belfast home by masked intruders, her children clinging to her legs. They never saw her again. Her abduction was one of the most notorious episodes of the vicious conflict known as The Troubles. Everyone in the neighborhood knew the I.R.A. was responsible. But in a climate of fear and paranoia, no one would speak of it. Patrick Radden Keefe's mesmerizing book on the bitter conflict in…

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Reading with Frye Gaillard at the BPL

March 25, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

FRYE GAILLARD brings his keen storyteller’s eye to this pivotal time in American life. He explores the competing story arcs of tragedy and hope through the political and social movements of the times — civil rights, black power, women’s liberation, the War in Vietnam, and the protests against it. But he also examines the cultural manifestations of change — music, literature, art, religion, and science — and so we meet not only the Brothers Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr and Malcolm…

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April 2019

Reading with Austin Kleon at the BPL

April 23, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

The world is crazy. Creative work is hard. And nothing is getting any easier! In his previous books—Steal Like an Artist and Show Your Work!, New York Times bestsellers with over a million copies in print combined—Austin Kleon gave readers the key to unlock their creativity and then showed them how to share it. Now he completes his trilogy with his most inspiring work yet. Keep Going gives the reader life-changing, illustrated advice and encouragement on how to stay creative, focused, and true to yourself in the face…

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June 2019

Russ Lopez Presents the History of LGBTQ Presence in MA

June 6, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Boston-based writer Russ Lopez will discuss his recently released history of the LGBTQ presence in Massachusetts, from the Pilgrims’ landing in Provincetown in 1620 through the defeat of the anti-trans referendum on the ballot in November, 2018. Mr. Lopez illustrates how LGBTQ people have been a distinctive element in the life of the Commonwealth since the 17th century, challenging gender, sexual, and social norms even in colonial days. Lopez sheds light on such interesting historical phenomena as the “Boston marriages” of…

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Author Talk Featuring Russ Lopez

June 6, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Boston-based writer Russ Lopez will discuss his recently released history of the LGBTQ presence in Massachusetts, from the Pilgrims’ landing in Provincetown in 1620 through the defeat of the anti-trans referendum on the ballot in November, 2018. Mr. Lopez illustrates how LGBTQ people have been a distinctive element in the life of the Commonwealth since the 17th century, challenging gender, sexual, and social norms even in colonial days. Lopez sheds light on such interesting historical phenomena as the “Boston marriages”…

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In Search of Stonewall, a Panel on LGBTQ Writing

June 10, 2019 | 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Free

In collaboration with the Boston Public Library and the Boston Pride Committee the Boston-based Gay and Lesbian Review will host a Stonewall 50-themed panel discussion during Boston Pride week. The Review began publishing as the Harvard Gay and Lesbian Review in 1994, the year of Stonewall 25. It changed its name in 2000 as it went “worldwide.” The magazine marks its 25thanniversary amidst Stonewall 50 with a collection of its best all-time essays on the Stonewall Riots: In Search of Stonewall. The panel will feature LGBTQ intellectuals…

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Author Talk Featuring John Manuel Andriote

June 25, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Public health advocate John Manuel Andriotte finds in LGBTQ history patterns of resiliency, mutual support, and community that suggest to him heroism, seldom acknowledged but enormously instructive. His book, Stonewall Strong, being released in paperback in the spring of 2019, canvasses past triumphs like the Stonewall Riots in 1969, the delisting of homosexuality as a mental disorder by the American Psychiatric Association, and the emergence of ACT UP in response to the AIDS crisis in the 1980’s. With redoubtable hope…

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October 2019

Author Talk Series: Jack Cashman: An Irish Immigrant Story at Boston Public Library

October 3, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

Johanna Cashman and Jack McCarthy, along with over a million others, immigrated to America to escape a devastating famine. They left behind family members who faced starvation to come to a land that would give them an opportunity for a good life. They were soon made aware that they were not welcome in this new land and that every day would present a new struggle for survival. In spite of all the obstacles they encountered, including Jacks untimely death, their…

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Author Talk Series: Wiebke von Carolsfeld and Jean Kwok at Boston Public Library

October 10, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

How to survive the unthinkable? This is the question nine-year-old Tom has to face after witnessing his parent’s murder-suicide. After the horrific event, Tom refuses to speak. At first, he moves in with his childless Aunt Sonya, but she is ill equipped to deal with the traumatized boy. Before long, Tom is forced to move again, this time to Claremont Street in downtown Toronto, where he shares a run-down house with his mercurial Aunt Rose and his reckless yet endearing…

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Author Talks Series: Farah Pandith: How We Win at Boston Public Library

October 28, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

How We Win’s message is urgent: America and its allies can defeat extremism, but not until we significantly shift our approach. We must counter extremism intellectually. Extremists are preying on a rising generation of nearly one billion Muslim millennials and Gen Z who are in the midst of an identity crisis, vulnerable to extremists’ seductive, intolerant, “us” versus “them” ideology, delivered using the latest technologies and real-life peer-suasion. Drones and special forces operations won’t destroy extremism at its root like…

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November 2019

Suzanne Hinman – The Grandest Madison Square Garden: Art, Scandal, and Architecture in the Gilded Age New York at Boston Public Library

November 19, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

The Grandest Madison Square Garden tells the non-fiction story of the fabulous 1890 “palace of pleasure” designed by Stanford White and the nude sculpture of the virgin goddess Diana by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, set on the Garden’s and America’s tallest tower. While revealing much new information, dispelling long-held myths, and proposing controversial new theories, the book conveys a sense of on-scene immediacy and excitement as this remarkable amalgamation of architecture, art, and spectacle rises amid the Gilded Age. Dr. Hinman will…

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Christine Coulson presents METROPOLITAN STORIES : A NOVEL in conversation with Thomas Michie at Boston Public Library

November 21, 2019 | 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free

From a writer who worked at the Metropolitan Museum for more than twenty-five years, an enchanting novel that shows us the Met that the public doesn’t see. Hidden behind the Picassos and Vermeers, the Temple of Dendur and the American Wing, exists another world: the hallways and offices, conservation studios, storerooms, and cafeteria that are home to the museum’s devoted and peculiar staff of 2,200 people–along with a few ghosts. A surreal love letter to this private side of the Met, Metropolitan…

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Did You Know?

Certain books were “banned in Boston” at least as far back as 1651, when one William Pynchon wrote a book criticizing Puritanism.