Exhibit: 'Harry Potter's World: Renaissance Science, Magic and Medicine'

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Although perceived as sheer fantasy by many, the magic depicted in the popular Harry Potter novels by author J.K. Rowling can be traced to Renaissance traditions that played a pivotal role in the development of modern science and medicine. The UC San Diego Libraries have been selected by the U.S. National Library of Medicine to host Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine, a traveling exhibit that sheds light on the Renaissance traditions featured in the Harry Potter canon.

The exhibit will be on display at Geisel Library from May 6 through June 16, and will be accompanied by a series of lectures by UC San Diego faculty members.

Take note of these special events happening around the event. They all are free and open to the public. Please register for the lectures at: http://libguides.ucsd.edu/harrypotter

Opening Reception

  • Visit the Seuss Room in Geisel Library on May 10 from 3-5 p.m., and enjoy Potter-themed refreshments and entertainment followed by a 4 p.m. talk by Seth Lerer, dean of Arts & Humanities at UC San Diego, on “Harry Potter and the Magic of Books.”

"From Beliefs and Spells to the Scientific Method:  A Long, Slow Journey for the Art of Medicine"  

  • Visit the Biomedical Library Events Room May 17, from noon-1 p.m. for a lecture by Dr. Henry Powell, a professor of pathology at the UC San Diego School of Medicine.

"Harry Potter and the Secrets of Order: Knowledge and Power from Renaissance to Hogwarts"

  • On May 24, from noon-1 p.m., Literature Professor Stephen Potts will give a talk on the influence of the magical tradition on the scientific revolution and the ethical issues that arose as knowledge became a real power for change in the Seuss Room.

“Juggling Mathematics and Magic”

  • On May 31, from 3-4 p.m., Professor Ronald Graham will explain the math behind magic in the Science & Engineering Library Events Room in the Geisel Library.


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