CORVALLIS - Oregon State University will host seven lectures throughout the year and a conference in March as part of the Horning Lecture Series, which has the theme in 1999-2000, "Science and Politics Past and Present."

Each year, OSU brings to campus some of the most noted scholars in their field as part of the Horning Lecture Series, funded by the Mary Jones and Thomas Hart Horning Endowment in the Humanities.

The first lecture, by James R. Bartholomew, will begin on Thursday, Oct. 14, at 4 p.m. in Weniger Hall Room 151. A specialist in modern Japanese history from Ohio State University, Bartholomew will lecture on "Japan and Nobel Science Prizes: The First Half Century." All of the Horning lectures are free and open to the public.

The author of a prize-winning book on the formation of science in Japan, Bartholomew will discuss the Nobel Prize nomination system and the relations of Japanese scientists with foreign colleagues from 1901 to 1949. His lecture will focus on Japanese candidacy for Nobel awards in the physical sciences and medicine, and look at the common belief that the comparative lack of Nobel awards to Japanese scientists - five since 1901 - is a result of that country's research system.

During the year, the Horning lecturers will examine how the work of scientists has been affected by the problems and expectations of the political states in which they live. Lecture themes include the effects of political constraints - and scientific knowledge - on technological decisions, and the civic and social responsibility of scientists and engineers.

Other lectures and events in the series include:


  • Nov. 11: "Alfred Nobel: Technician, Inventor, Donor," by Tore Frangsmyr, a member of the Swedish Academy of Sciences and a professor of the history of ideas at the University of Uppsala; 4 p.m., Memorial Union 206.


  • Dec. 2: "Making an Exhibition Historical: Freud, Conflict and Culture," by Michael S. Roth, historian and director of the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles and organizer of the recent Smithsonian exhibition on Sigmund Freud; 4 p.m., Memorial Union 206.


  • Feb. 10:"Talking about the Weather: A History of Science and Politics," by Spencer Weart, the American Institute of Physics, 7 p.m., LaSells Stewart Center.


  • March 2: "Lavoisier's Balance: Between Chemistry and Politics," by Bernadette Bensaude-Vincent, University of Paris, 4 p.m., Gilbert Hall 324.


  • March 10-11: A Conference: "Science and Politics: What is to be Learned from the Russian Experience?" The conference will include a keynote address from Loren Graham, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University, as well as lectures and sessions with eight speakers from the U.S. and Russia.


  • April 27:"Learning from Las Vegas and Silicon Valley: Science and Politics in the Post-Modern City," by Stuart W. Leslie, The Johns Hopkins University, 4 p.m., Memorial Union 206.


  • May 4:"Little Alvin and the Bomb: The Military Roots of Basic Science," by Naomi Oreskes, University of California, 4 p.m., Memorial Union 206.


The Horning Endowment also is sponsoring a pair of lectures Nov. 1-2 by David M. Knight, of the University of Durham in England. One, examining the logic of experiments in chemistry, will begin at 4 p.m. on Nov. 1 in Memorial Union 206. The other, on the relationship between science and religion, will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 2 in Peavy Room 130.

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Ginny Domka, 541-737-1275