CORVALLIS- Author and New York Times science reporter Dennis Overbye will speak at Oregon State University on Thursday, Oct. 31, as part of the university's Horning Lecture Series. The free public lecture begins at 4 p.m. in the Joyce Powell Leadership Room in the Memorial Union.

Overbye will discuss "Watching Scientists Watch the Universe." In this lecture, he will examine the relationship between journalism and history. "It is often said that journalism is the first draft of history," Overbye said. "If that's the case, then, as far as science goes, it's a pretty lousy draft."

For his reporting at the New York Times, Overbye focuses on physics and cosmology. He also has written extensively on the creation of anti-matter, the expansion of the universe, and searches for extra-terrestrial life.

Overbye has authored various books throughout his career. His first book, "Lonely Hearts of the Cosmos: The Story of the Scientific Quest for the Secret of the Universe," was published in 1999. It tells stories about Stephen Hawking, Alan Guth, Beatrice Tinsley, Allan Sandage and other explorers of the origins of the universe. His most recent work was published in 2001, "Einstein Love: A Scientific Romance." The book was a result of seven years of research into hundreds of published and unpublished letters between Einstein and his first wife, Mileva Maric.

Overbye is the second of seven speakers in the OSU Horning Lecture Series, which in 2002-03 will bring to campus scientists and humanists to talk about books, essays, plays and films in which they have explained and or interpreted science and scientists for general audiences. All of the events are sponsored by the Thomas Hart and Mary Jones Horning Endowment in the Humanities at OSU. They are coordinated by the OSU Department of History. For more information call, 541-737-3421.

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Mary Jo Nye 541-737-1308