Thor Hanson Lecture - a special event!
A FREE public lecture and book signing
On Wednesday, September 7, 2016
author and conservation biologist
will speak at the
DMG Mori Auditorium,
3805 Faraday Avenue, Davis [Map}
about his 2011 award winning book
"Feathers: The evolution of a natural miracle"
"Feathers" can be purchased at The Avid Reader in downtown Davis (617 2nd St, Davis, CA 95616) and will be available for purchase and signing at the September 7th lecture.
Dr. Thor Hanson is a Guggenheim Fellow, a Switzer Environmental Fellow, and an award winning author and biologist. His books include The Triumph of Seeds and The Impenetrable Forest. His writing has earned many accolades, including The John Burroughs Medal, the AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize, and two Pacific Northwest Book Awards.
Hanson is a field biologist, an independent conservation biologist, and the first half of his book reveals the natural history of a 'common object with uncommon abilities'. Hanson writes: “Feathers can conceal or attract. They can be vibrantly colored without using pigment. They can store water or repel it. They can snap, whistle, hum, vibrate, boom and whine. They’re a near-perfect airfoil and the lightest, most efficient insulation ever discovered.” In the latter half of his book he has an easy, amusing way with the cultural history visiting the feather-dyeing operation serving Las Vegas showgirls and points us to Leonardo and the Wright Brothers as they try to copy birds’ flying mechanics.
He concludes his book with the observation that: "The exploration of natural miracles is a fundamentally open-ended and curiosity driven enterprise. It reminds us that science is not always about the answers; it's about the questions."
"Hanson has produced a winning book about the extraordinary place of feathers in animal and human history... like all true birdwatchers, Mr. Hanson knows it isn't just the bird at the far end of the binoculars but the human being at the near end that matter, and he is writing as much about the human urge to understand, appreciate and appropriate the wild world as he is writing about feathers, which he calls, in his subtitle, a 'natural miracle,'... Feathers is an earthbound book, but this does not keep the author--or the reader--from looking up in wonder."
—New York Times
"Book subjects come in waves; the publishing world is now full of books on feathers, but this may well be the best. Thor Hanson, a field biologist, claims that the subject chose him. If so, it chose well; I love nothing better than scientists who can write. Hanson’s book covers every aspect of feathers—evolutionary, structural and functional, and finally cultural, showing all the ways that humans as well as birds use them. He ranges in time from the lithographic shale of the Jurassic to the present, and geographically from China to Maine to Las Vegas."
—The Cornell Lab of Ornithology
This special lecture event is part of Explorit's multifaceted "Feathers In Your World" Community Science Project