As part of Harvard’s 375th anniversary, the University has announced the John Harvard Book Celebration, a lecture series designed to bring some of Harvard’s most renowned faculty members out of the classroom and into their neighborhood libraries. Developed in partnership with the Boston and Cambridge public libraries, the program will reach all 34 library branches, and not just through speakers, but also through 400 free books.
“Harvard was named in honor of John Harvard’s gift of 400 books,” said Harvard President Drew Faust, in a press release. “As the custodian of the largest academic library in the world, we see this series as a celebration of the book, of the power of the libraries and of our shared 375-year history with Boston and Cambridge.”
All events will be free and open to the public, kicking off with a lecture by Faust, a Civil War scholar, tomorrow at 7 p.m. at the Main Library in Cambridge. Titled “Telling War Stories: Reflections of a Civil War Historian,” Faust will launch the series, and will also discuss her most recent book, This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War, which was a finalist for the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize.
Diane Paulus, artistic director of the American Repertory Theater and a Tony Award winner, as well as Steven Pinker, one of the world’s leading authorities on language and the mind, will also be among the speakers featured in upcoming months.
“Harvard has been an outstanding community partner for 375 years, and I am so pleased that the University has chosen to include the entire Boston community in its anniversary celebration,” said Mayor Thomas Menino. “This lecture series is an incredible opportunity for residents and families all across Boston to interact with some of the world’s brightest minds at their own neighborhood library.”
For a full list of faculty lecturers, dates, locations and activities, feel free to click here.