Head to campus this month to learn things you don't already know about the Russian Revolution, medieval Ireland, and directed evolution.

WHAT: Lecture: A Book in Common: Remembering Akbar by Behrooz Ghamari-Tabrizi

WHEN: August 31 at 3 p.m.

WHERE: 210 General Lounge, Illini Union

ABOUT"A Book in Common" is a History Department tradition of coming together at the start of each academic year around a compelling historically-oriented book nominated by a faculty member or grad student and chosen by committee. This year's book was nominated by Professor Antoinette Burton, who, together with Behrooz himself, will be leading the discussion.

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WHAT: Lecture: Mark Steinberg, "Leaping into the Open Air of History: The Russian Revolution and the Utopian Imagination"

WHEN: September 1 at 4 p.m.

WHERE: 407 Illini Union

ABOUTAs the centenary of the Russian Revolution approaches, this lecture revisits the question of “utopianism”—conventionally a negative charge of fanciful desire, wishful illusion, or worse—through three radical lives: Alexandra Kollontai, Lev Trotsky, and Vladimir Mayakovsky.

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WHAT: Lecture: : Brazil Circles the Globe: Five centuries exchanging commodities, ideas and cultural practices

WHEN: September 6 at 2 p.m.

WHERE: 101 International Studies Building

ABOUTThis lecture features Ruben Oliven, a Distinguished Visiting Professor from the Department of Anthropology in UFRGS, Brazil.

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WHAT: Lecture: "From Single Markets to Transatlantic Markets: Lessons from the United States for Europe" by Michelle Egan

WHEN: September 12 at 3 p.m.

WHERE: Illini Union, Ballroom on the 2nd Floor

ABOUTComparing the experience of the US during the nineteenth century and the European single market of in the twentieth century, the corresponding political and societal struggles that ensued provides an interesting lens into the dilemmas facing European integration, as the consolidation of markets in the US took place in conjunction with the expansion of state regulatory power and the pressures for democratic reform. By examining how- and how successfully markets have been consolidated in these two large economies, we can ask what accounts for the political success or failure in creating single markets in their respective territories? Can social discontent threaten market integration with a populist backlash, and if so, what needs to be done to create political support for market integration? While we focus on these questions in Europe, Yet as the EU confronts many challenges in terms of its identity, solidarity, the sovereign debt crisis and the efforts to tackle burgeoning public deficits, backlash against foreign immigration, downward pressure on wage rates, and so forth, these economic and social impacts resonate with the American experience. Many of these economic governance issues are ongoing within the EU, but the legal and political choices in how the US and EU have integrated their respective single markets, and the dynamics of federalism are relevant even today for contemporary transatlantic trade negotiations.

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WHAT: Exhibit: Medieval Irish Masterpieces in Modern Reproduction

WHEN: Starts September 13

WHERE: Spurlock Museum

ABOUTIn 1916, the UIUC Museum of European History acquired a remarkable set of high-quality reproductions of major monuments of early Irish metalwork art, including the Tara Brooch, Ardagh Chalice, the Cross of Cong, and the shrine of St. Lachtin’s arm. These superb pieces were part of a larger collection created in very small numbers by the Dublin jeweler Edmond Johnson for the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893. They are important not only as museum-quality reproductions but also in their own right as specimens of the art of the Celtic Revival and of modern "medievalism." In this exhibit, many pieces of this collection will be displayed alongside 19th- and 20th-century facsimiles of illuminated Irish vernacular and Latin manuscripts on loan from the UIUC Library—works that have been fundamental to scholarship on medieval Irish studies in the past century and a half.

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WHAT: Lecture: Paul Hatch "Design for Local"

WHEN: September 15 at 5:30 p.m.

WHERE: KAM Lower Level, Auditorium (Room 62)

ABOUT"Design for Local" is presented by Paul Hatch, industrial designer and founder/president of TEAMS Design USA. Paul Hatch established TEAMS Design USA consultancy based in Chicago. He will speak as part of the School of Art Design Lecture Series, which showcases notable national and international artists, designers, and scholars.

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WHAT: VOICE Reading Series

WHEN: September 15 at 7:30 p.m.

WHERE: KAM Lower Level, Classroom Studio B (formerly CRL Gallery)

ABOUTThe VOICE Reading Series showcases fiction writers and poets from the Creative Writing MFA Program at the University of Illinois. Three authors will present new work from a variety of genres. All are welcome to enjoy the talents of some of the most skilled writers on campus.

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WHAT: Lecture: "Orpheus Crosses the Atlantic: Native Americans Writing Latin in Colonial New England" by Craig Williams

WHEN: September 16 at 2 p.m.

WHERE: Lucy Ellis Lounge, 1080 FLB

ABOUTThis lecture is sponsored by the Department of Classics.

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WHAT: Lecture: Beckman-Brown Lecture on Interdisciplinary Science by Frances H. Arnold

WHEN: September 19 at 12 p.m.

WHERE: Beckman Institute, 405 North Mathews Avenue

ABOUTRecipient of the 2016 Millennium Technology Prize, Arnold’s research focuses on protein engineering by directed evolution, with applications in alternative energy, chemicals, and medicine. She pioneered the ‘directed evolution’ of proteins, mimicking Darwinian evolution in the laboratory to create new biological molecules. Her laboratory has developed methods of laboratory evolution and structure-guided recombination that are used widely in industry and basic science to engineer proteins with new and interesting properties.

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WHAT: Bio-Humanities Interchange with Felicity Callard

WHEN: September 22 at 4 p.m.

WHERE: IPRH Lecture Hall, Levis Faculty Center, Fourth Floor (919 West Illinois Street, Urbana, IL)

ABOUTDr. Felicity Callard (Reader in Social Science for Medical Humanities in Department of Geography, Durham University / Director of Hubbub at Wellcome Collection) has a background in both the humanities and the social sciences: she took a first class degree in geography at the University of Oxford, before moving to the University of Sussex to take a masters degree in English (Critical Theory). Her doctorate from The Johns Hopkins University, in cultural / medical geography (directed by Professors David Harvey and Ruth Leys), entailed working at the intersection of the humanities, history of psychiatry, cultural studies and social theory. Specifically, she explored the genealogy of agoraphobia and phobias from their emergence as named conditions in the 1870s to the emergence of Panic Disorder in DSM-III, IIIR and IV. She is in the process of extending this research into a monograph -- by focusing in particular on the early clinical pharmacological research in the US (pursued by Max Fink and Donald Klein at The Hillside Hospital) and on behavioral therapeutic interventions for anxiety and phobias. She has broad research interests in the history and living present of psychiatry, psychoanalysis and cognitive neuroscience.

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WHAT: Discussion of The Missing American Jury by Suja A. Thomas

WHEN: September 26 at 4:30 p.m.

WHERE: College of Law, Room D

ABOUTThis is a book talk with Professor Suja Thomas of UIUC's College of Law.

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WHAT: Lecture: The link between agriculture and nutrition in rural households: The case of the Purchase for Progress Program in Guatemala

WHEN: September 29 at 12 p.m.

WHERE: 101 International Studies Building

ABOUTThis event is sponsored by the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies.

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We live near a major university and a community college. There are smart people that come here every week to talk to the general public about interesting topics. Here's a sampling of the talks and events you can find in the not-so-ivy-covered buildings near you. These events are free and will fill your brain with yummy knowledge (and sometimes will fill your stomach with free eats).