National Book Award Finalist Lauren Redniss, Thursday, April 5— Art Lovers Welcome!

  Lauren Redniss is a graphic biographer whose writing and drawing have appeared in the New York Times, which nominated her for the Pulitzer Prize. Her idea for a life of the Curies occurred to her because, she told the online magazine, … [Read more...]

Video: Columbus, the Four Voyages

Christopher Columbus, said a New York Times reviewer of Laurence Bergreen’s biography, was a “terribly interesting man — brilliant, audacious, volatile, paranoid, narcissistic, ruthless and (in the end) deeply unhappy.” Part explorer, part … [Read more...]

Video: American Emperor: Aaron Burr’s Challenge to Jefferson’s America

Vice-president of the United States, brilliant attorney, duelist, and renegade leader of Western adventurers— Aaron Burr cut a path through American history that is bold, at times erratic, and highly controversial. In his fast-paced book, American … [Read more...]

Celebrating the 100th Anniversary: Juliette Gordon Low, Founder of the Girl Scouts, Thursday, March 15

  Born at the start of the Civil War, Juliette Gordon Low grew up in Georgia, where she struggled to reconcile being a good Southern belle with her desire to run barefoot through the fields. Deafened by an accident, "Daisy" married a dashing … [Read more...]

Video: Noah Webster, the Forgotten Founding Father

Get to know Noah Webster, a brusque, ambitious intellectual who influences you every time you speak or start to write. Noah Webster was born in 1758 in Connecticut of a prestigious Puritan Yankee lineage. Although he tried variously to be a lawyer, … [Read more...]

Louisa May Alcott—With Clips from the Documentary— Tuesday, March 13

Frederick Douglass

Louisa May Alcott spent her childhood in Boston and in Concord, Massachusetts, where her days were enlightened by visits to Ralph Waldo Emerson’s library and excursions into nature with Henry David Thoreau. When she was 35, she wrote the beloved … [Read more...]

Video: Lecture on the Marquis de Lafayette

The Marquis de Lafayette, who came from a long line of French military men dating to the Crusades, wanted honor and glory from a young age. But he had to leave the comforts of his native France and sail to America in order to find them. Born in … [Read more...]

Clarence Darrow: Thursday, February 23

  John A. Farrell's biography Clarence Darrow: Attorney for the Damned (Doubleday, 2011) — “impeccably researched, beautifully written, and timely,” said the San Francisco Chronicle— describes the career of the limelight-stealing, two-fisted … [Read more...]

The Loving Story: Tuesday, Feb 14

  On February 14, the same night that it premiers on HBO, the Chappell Great Lives Lecture Series will show clips from The Loving Story, with guests attorney Bernard Cohen, who was part of the ACLU team that represented the Lovings before the … [Read more...]

Jackie Robinson: Thursday, Feb 16

  April 15, 1947, marked the most important opening day in baseball history. When Jackie Robinson stepped onto the diamond that afternoon at Ebbets Field, he became the first black man to break into major-league baseball in the 20th century. … [Read more...]