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Big-brained lectures and book talks on the calendar in Aspen this week

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Saad Bhamla
Courtesy photo
Professor and scientist Manu Prakash gives a thumbs up while conducting work in the field. Prakash will be speaking at the Aspen Center for Physics on Jan. 4.

So, you’ve made your new year’s resolutions, and you want to get outside more, spend more time with family, and eat more vegetables.

Or maybe you want to get a little smarter. In that case, you can get started this week with a slew of book talks and big-brained lectures on the calendar in Aspen.

On Wednesday, the Aspen Center for Physics kicks off the 2023 DeWolf Foundation winter lecture series with a talk by Stanford University’s Manu Prakash at 5:30 p.m.

Prakash is a professor, physical biologist and inventor who will present a lecture on “Recreational Biology: Topological Puzzles at Cellular Scales.” He’ll also speak on “the role of curiosity as an engine for discovery in life sciences,” according to the Aspen Center for Physics.

If political activism is more your speed, Explore Booksellers hosts David Fenton, author of “The Activist’s Media Handbook,” Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. Fenton’s career includes work with Nelson Mandela, Fidel Castro, Bruce Springsteen, Abbie Hoffman and Al Gore.

On Thursday at 5 p.m., author Ted Conover will speak with Aspen Journalism’s Curtis Wackerle at Aspen Meadows about Conover’s new book, “Cheap Land Colorado: Off-Gridders at America’s Edge.” That event is at capacity but you can sign up for the waitlist online.

And on Sunday, physicist Amory Lovins swings by Explore Booksellers at 4:30 p.m. to talk about the future of the Aspen/Pitkin County Airport and his new nonprofit, Aspen Fly Right.

The Old Snowmass resident co-founded the Rocky Mountain Institute (now called RMI), and Explore calls him “one of the country’s preeminent intellectuals.”


Kaya Williams is the Edlis Neeson Arts and Culture Reporter at Aspen Public Radio, covering the vibrant creative and cultural scene in Aspen and the Roaring Fork Valley. She studied journalism and history at Boston University, where she also worked for WBUR, WGBH, The Boston Globe and her beloved college newspaper, The Daily Free Press. Williams joins the team after a stint at The Aspen Times, where she reported on Snowmass Village, education, mental health, food, the ski industry, arts and culture and other general assignment stories.