Your independent source for Harvard news since 1898

Your independent source for Harvard news since 1898

November-December 2008

Letters

Communications from our readers

The College Pump

Comments about swinging doors and energy conservation, David Roy Shackleton Bailey, brain aging and a defunct drinking fountain, and the love of learning and of one’s colleagues

Treasure

A map showing “The Dispersal of the Children of Noah,” in an exhibit at the Andover-Harvard Theological Library, reflects dispute by Puritan theologian Hugh Broughton...

In this Issue

Tail of the panther chameleon, <em>Furcifer pardalis</em>, of Madagascar. The same species appears on the cover (below, right). Chameleons do not change color to match their backgrounds, but to communicate excitement, anger, fear, and other emotions.

Kit Reed introduces an exhibition at the Harvard Museum of Natural History that reveals the different roles color plays in the animal and plant kingdoms.

Richard Wilbur

Craig Lambert profiles the poet Richard Wilbur.

William P. MacKinnon profiles the early war correspondent who covered the Utah War against the Mormon government of Brigham Young.

Elizabeth Gudrais reports on how discoveries in genetics, cell metabolism, and the study of small molecules point the way to new therapies and perhaps a cure for diabetes.

Letters

Communications from our readers

Right Now

The slave trade shipped Africans to the Americas, the Middle East, and Asia; where victims ended up depended in part on which trade route their captors used. In total, the four routes ferried nearly 20 million people out of Africa.

Interdisciplinary economist Nathan Nunn explores the problem of African underdevelopment by drawing on—and unearthing—historical data about slavery.

Biological anthropologist Marc Hauser seeks to isolate the aspects of human thought that account for what he terms "humaniqueness," the difference between animal and human thought.

Images from the Encyclopedia of Life include these examples. James Hanken plans to allow amateur ecologists to upload their own photographs to the catalog. Above, a smooth snake (<em>Coronella austriaca</em>)

James Hanken of the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology and other scientists launch an ambitious project to chronicle all life on earth.

Psychologist and public-policy scholar Jennifer Lerner explores how emotions influence behavior and judgment.

Mechanical engineer Emilie Dressaire

Mechanical engineering student Emilie Dressaire studies tiny bubbles that can last up to a year and replace fat droplets in ice cream.

New England Regional

Architect Maryann Thompson M.Arch.-M.L.A. &rsquo;89 at the &ldquo;Zero Impact House&rdquo;

Profiles of Maryann Thompson, who practices sustainable architecture; Sarah Beatty, who founded a green building-supplies company; and David Hamilton, who works to preserve farmland

A calendar of events at Harvard

The &ldquo;Crunchy Roll&rdquo; with salmon, tuna, and mango sauce.

A review of a Japanese restaurant, Douzo, in Boston

John Harvard's Journal

High windows overlooking a courtyard reflect the Museum of Comparative Zoology. The low granite curbs among the trees frame skylights.

The new Northwest Science Building at Harvard

Harvard’s endowment grows in fiscal year 2008 by $2.0 billion, or 5.7 percent, to $36.9 billion.

Tarun Khanna

Harvard Business School professor Tarun Khanna seeks to integrate Western business models into emerging markets.

Recent complaints about the Harvard University Police Department have prompted a special presidential review committee charged with improving the department’s relationship with the community.

Viral delivery of a three-transcription-factor cocktail has transformed pancreatic exocrine cells (blue) into scattered insulin-producing beta cells (red). A preexisting islet, or grouping of beta cells, is outlined at the upper left.

Harvard researchers at the Stem Cell Institute achieve major breakthroughs.

Headlines from Harvard history

President Drew Faust delivers a homily at Morning Prayers on the importance of environmental stewardship.

Harvard pushes undergraduates to ponder life’s big questions.

Ariel Phillips and Abigail Lipson head the Success-Failure Project at the Harvard Bureau of Study Counsel.

A summary of the Harvard University Financial Report for fiscal year 2008

Harvard faculty members gather to discuss economic problems on Wall Street and beyond.

Rhonda Wittels

The Harvard Gay and Lesbian Caucus celebrates its twenty-fifth anniversary.

Short takes on recent news at Harvard

The Undergraduate reflects on how good and bad dreams shape the way we grow up.

Francine Polet

Francine Polet brings international experience and tactics to the Harvard field-hockey team.

How Harvard athletes fared at the Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Games

Fall semester soccer results to date

A report on the first half of the Harvard football season. And: The Harvard football team has a fancy new locker room.

Kevin Rafferty has made a documentary film, <em>Harvard Beats Yale 29-29,</em> about the 1968 football game.

The Ivy League exonerated men’s basketball head coach Tommy Amaker and an assistant coach following allegations of improper recruiting and lowered admissions standards for the men’s team.

Montage

After a childhood spent playing the classics, cellist Matt Haimovitz has devoted himself to new music.

Weaver ants (<i>Oecophylla smaragdina</i>) cooperate as they construct their leaf-tent nests.

An excerpt from <em>The Superorganism: The Beauty, Elegance, and Strangeness of Insect Societies,</em> by Bert Hölldobler and E. O. Wilson

The artist holds <i>Summer Salt Marsh</i> (2008).

Fabric artist Linda Liu Behar stitches embroideries atop her own photographs.

Interior of the finished Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts.

A new book, <em>Le Corbusier Le Grand</em>, pulls together the career of Le Corbusier, with material on Harvard’s Carpenter Center.

Cynthia Saltzman &rsquo;71, <i><a href="http://www.powells.com/partner/30264/biblio/9781436255837">Old Masters, New World: America&rsquo;s Raid on Europe&rsquo;s Great Pictures, 1800-World War I</a></i> (Viking, $27.95)

James Cuno reviews <em>Old Masters, New World: America’s Raid on Europe’s Great Pictures</em>, by Cynthia Saltzman

Correspondence on not-so-famous lost words

Jane Kamensky and Jill Lepore, <em><a href="http://www.powells.com/partner/30264/biblio/9780385526197">Blindspot</a></em>,  (Random House, $24.95)

History professor Jill Lepore is the coauthor, with Jane Kamensky, of the historical novel <em>Blindspot,</em> set in colonial Boston.

Recent books with Harvard connections

Alumni

William Thomas, M.D. &rsquo;86

William Thomas, founder of the Eden Alternative and the Green House Project, reimagines nursing homes and residential living for the elderly.

Events at Harvard Clubs

A Harvard Alumni Association global conference in South Africa

Programs that match Harvard College students with jobs and internships

Recipients of the 2008 Harvard Alumni Association Awards

The College Pump

Comments about swinging doors and energy conservation, David Roy Shackleton Bailey, brain aging and a defunct drinking fountain, and the love of learning and of one’s colleagues

Treasure

A map showing “The Dispersal of the Children of Noah,” in an exhibit at the Andover-Harvard Theological Library, reflects dispute by Puritan theologian Hugh Broughton...