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If you're thirsty and have always wanted to know about looking for space microbes on Europa, what medieval people really thought about dragons, how to make energy from alternative sources, or what a philosopher has to say about what the heck is actually going on, come to Public Works! It's a free event in the style of Nerd Night but designed just for Ithaca. We're bringing a variety of intellectually-stimulating presentations right to you for your entertainment and educational pleasure at The Downstairs, the bar below The Watershed. Come hear talks given by Cornell and IC graduate students, professors, community experts, and everything in between! Each session will feature one to three accessible talks, followed by a Q&A session where audience participation is highly encouraged but not required!

Bring a friend, make a friend, ask an expert, and drink a beer!

The May 1st Public Works event will feature 2 talks:

a religious history talk:

"A Field Guide to the Apocalypse"

by Dr. Kim Haines-Eitzen
Hendrix Memorial Professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies and Religious Studies Program at Cornell University

The language of apocalypse is seemingly all around us. From the devastation of war to the aftermath of voracious wildfires, from doomsday preppers to ecological collapse we confront the persistent vitality of apocalyptic language and thought. In this talk, I will take us back to the roots of apocalyptic thought in antiquity to reflect on the sense of revelation—an uncovering or an unveiling—in the apocalyptic imagination. But I also want to unpack something more elemental—namely, how earth, wind, water, and especially fire animated apocalypticism in the past and what they might teach us about our present moment.

and a physics talk:

"Particles? Accelerators? Wait, Why Should I Care?': The Societal Benefits of Fundamental Science"

by Dr. Antoine Chapelain
Accelerator Physicist at CLASSE

Particle and accelerator physics might sound like science fiction to you, but they affect us in the real world more than you might think (in a good way!). Let’s dive into these fields of research and see what they are, where they come from, and how they have changed our everyday lives. We’ll start with a brief overview and history before getting into some applications.


Time and Location

First Wednesday of every month, 7 PM.
The Downstairs
121 W. State Street
Ithaca, NY

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Interested in giving a talk?

We want to hear from you! Come talk to us at a Public Works event or send us a message at ithacapublicworks@gmail.com. Are you an academic? Feel free to list your Public Works talk as an outreach event on your CV! Are you not an academic? We still want to hear from you!