September Events: Jennifer Michael Hecht; Freethinkers Tour of NYC

August 6, 2008

Join CFI-NYC for two exciting events in the beginning of September: a Salon/Dinner event with author and poet Jennifer Michael Hecht ( Doubt: A History ; The Happiness Myth ), and a newly updated Freethinkers Tour of New York City with Susan Jacoby ( Freethinkers ; The Age of American Unreason ).

Truth Uncorked: Where Wine Flows Like Conversation.

Jennifer Michael Hecht, Mon., Sept. 8, 6:30 p.m.

Join the Center for Inquiry and the Dactyl Foundation for the Arts & Humanities on Monday, Sept. 8 for our next Truth Uncorked event, with author, poet, and intellectual historian Jennifer Michael Hecht.   Our main event, featuring a salon conversation over wine and light hors d'oeuvres, begins at 6:30 p.m.  An optional, intimate dinner with the speaker will follow.

Jennifer Michael Hecht is the author of several books, including Doubt: A History , an epic, world-wide study of religious doubt throughout history and, most recently,  The Happiness Myth: Why What We Think Is Right Is Wrong .  In The Happiness Myth, Hecht attempts to examine happiness through historical perspective. She maintains that our current perception of happiness is affected by culture, and that future generations may well mock our view of happiness as we make fun of earlier generations. Hecht attended Adelphi University and earned a Ph.D. in the History of Science from Columbia University in 1995.  For a time studied at the Université de Caen, and the Université d'Angers. She currently teaches poetry and philosophy in the Graduate Writing Program of The New School and is a fellow of the New York Institute for the Humanities.  Hecht's scholarly articles and poetry have been published in many journals and magazines. She has written several columns for The New York Times online's Times Select .  She has also written book reviews for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The American Scholar , and other publications. 

Monday, Sept. 8.

Salon Event ($30): Dactyl Foundation, 64 Grand St. (between W. Broadway and Wooster St.), 6:30 p.m.  RSVP strongly encouraged.

Dinner ($90): Bistro Les Amis, 180 Spring St. (at Thompson St.), 8:30 p.m. Limited space.  RSVP required. 

To RSVP call 212-504-2935 or e-mail twilliams [at] centerforinquiry [dot] net. 

Freethinkers Tour of New York City

Sat., Sept. 6

Back by popular demand, CFI-NYC's annual Freethinkers Tour of New York is back, with an updated script by Susan Jacoby. We'll meet at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 6, in front of the Gramercy Park Hotel on the northwest corner of Lexington Avenue and 21st Street. Robert Ingersoll, "the Great Agnostic," lived in a townhouse on this site in the 1880s and 1890s. The walking tour will be led by professional guide Justin Ferate, and Ms. Jacoby, the author of The Age of American Unreason , will give readings at various points. We'll proceed to Union Square and Cooper Union, both sites of important freethought events in New York history. An added attraction of this tour will be a special exhibition on free speech at Cooper Union. As in the past, we will wind up in a bar to drink a toast to Thomas Paine in the West Village near the site of Paine's death.  This will be a walking tour from Gramercy Park to Cooper Union. Since the final stop is on Grove Street in the West Village, some of you may want to take a taxi instead of walking the last mile. Ms. Jacoby and Mr. Ferate will be there to end the tour with final thoughts on Paine's life and death.

Space is limited, so reservations are strongly urged. To defray the cost of a professional guide, we're charging $15, $5 for students. To RSVP, call Tasha Williams-Dantzler at 212-504-2935, or e-mail twilliams [at] centerforinquiry [dot] net.  Payment accepted by cash, check, or credit card.