Thursday, October 2, 2014
The image of fierce, all-female Amazons — barbarian archers on horseback who gloried in fighting, hunting, and sexual freedom — has endured from the days of ancient Greece. But were they more than myth?
Adrienne Mayor, a research scholar in classics and in the history and philosophy of science at Stanford University, dissects the Amazonian legend in a discussion of her wide-ranging, deeply researched book. Unearthing long-buried evidence, she sifts fact from fiction in showing how flesh-and-blood women of the Eurasian steppes were mythologized as Amazons, the equals of men. Not only the Greeks were enchanted; Mayor shows that warlike women of nomadic cultures were featured in tales from ancient Egypt, Persia, India, Central Asia, and China.
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Union Station, 30 W. Pershing Rd.
This installment of Meet the Past is now “sold out.”
Once the episode is aired on KCPT, it will be made available at kclibrary.org/meet-the-past.
You MUST RSVP in order to be admitted to this event.
Your RSVP entitles you to the specified number of general admission tickets.
Tickets may be picked up at the Union Station ticket office starting at 5 p.m. on the day of the event. Standard Union Station parking rates apply.
Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Film Screening: 4 p.m. Program 6:30 p.m.
The John Ford-John Wayne film, The Searchers, is one of the great Hollywood Westerns. But the movie was only a late entry in a real-life saga stretching back to 1830s Texas.
In a discussion of his book, Glenn Frankel traces the story from the 1836 kidnapping of a white girl by Comanche Indians to her “rescue” almost 25 years later, her subsequent unhappy life, and the various retellings of the epic tale in fiction, theater, and opera leading up to Alan LeMay’s 1954 novel and Ford’s 1956 film.
The talk by Frankel, a Pulitzer Prize-winning former reporter, editor and foreign bureau chief for The Washington Post who now heads the University of Texas’ School of Journalism, is preceded by a screening of The Searchers at 4 p.m.
Sunday, September 28, 2014
Kansas City’s Union Station opened 100 years ago next month, a grand, 850,000-square-foot edifice that saw as many as 678,000-plus rail passengers pass through its doors in 1945. After falling into disuse and decay, it was restored and reopened in 1999 in all its original Beaux-Arts splendor – as home to theaters, museum exhibits, and such permanent attractions as Science City. With the return of train service, it’s the second-busiest terminal in the state.
In observance of the centennial, Jeffrey Spivak draws from his 1999 book, Union Station, Kansas City, in discussing the station’s history, controversial adaptive reuse, and role in future transit and civic plans. Now, a senior market analyst at Black & Veatch, Spivak spent more than 23 years as a civic affairs reporter for The Kansas City Star.
Saturday, September 27, 2014
Help us wrap up Banned Books Week with a celebration of the freedom to read! We'll introduce attendees to the annual Banned Books Week awareness campaign.
Special guests include the Collins family, who recently drew international attention to their efforts to keep a Little Free Library in their Leawood, Kansas, front yard.
Friday, September 26, 2014
The pig is big in these parts. Both Missouri and Kansas rank among the nation’s top 10 pork-producing states, annually putting more than 2 million pounds of bacon, ham, chops, and other cuts on grocers’ shelves and consumers’ tables.
On the eve of a new, daylong Kansas City festival, Knife and Pork, that spotlights sustainability in the industry and the region’s vital role in it, four craft butchers from across the country – Rob Levitt of Chicago, Chris Eley of Indianapolis, and Jerry Traczyk and Jonny Hunter of Madison, Wis. – participate in a round-table discussion of sustainable pork production. A reception prior to the program offers locally prepared pork dishes.
Co-presented by Recommended Daily and Local Pig, and co-sponsored by Tallgrass Brewing Company.
Thursday, September 25, 2014
This event has been canceled at the author’s request. We will make every effort to notify interested persons when and if the program is rescheduled.
Undocumented immigrants – especially those who are Spanish-speaking – are under fire on multiple fronts, accused of raising crime rates, taking jobs away from citizens, crashing the economy, and eroding traditional American values.
Florida International University professor Ediberto Román takes on those critics in a discussion of his book, offering a counter-narrative to what he argues is a largely one-sided debate.
Local writer Xánath Caraza opens the evening with a reading of her poem, “De Sinónimos, Eufemismos y Algunos Tropos (Of Synonyms, Euphemisms and Other Figures of Speech).”
The event coincides with the traveling exhibit, Estamos Aqui (We Are Here), on display at the Central Library through October 19, 2014. It showcases the work of largely Chicano-Latino participants in a specialized silkscreening workshop at the Coronado Studio in Austin, Texas.
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Yes, there’s gridlock in Washington. There’s polarization and self-interest. But beyond those breakdowns, Philip K. Howard points to what he says is a deeper and more destructive hindrance to good government: The system itself is broken. Rules leave no room for common sense. Leaders lack the authority, or responsibility, to lead.
Howard, a New York lawyer and founder of the nonpartisan coalition Common Good, which advocates an overhaul of government and the courts, discusses his new book, The Rule of Nobody, in which he argues for a return to the framers’ vision of public law – simply setting goals and boundaries, not dictating daily choices. Leaders, Howard says, should ask, “What’s the right thing to do?” not “What does the rule book say?”
Co-presented by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.
Friday, September 19, 2014
The 2014 edition of the long-running Off-the-Wall Film Series, co-presented by The Kansas City Public Library and The Pitch, features musically-themed titles from 1984.
Under the direction of Jonathan Demme, David Byrne and the Talking Heads deliver one of the greatest concert movies ever in Stop Making Sense. Featured are Heads classics like “Take Me to the River,” “Psycho Killer,” “Once in a Lifetime,” and “Burning Down the House.” Not to mention an appearance by Byrne’s “big suit.”
These five films, presented on one Friday each month from May through September on the Rooftop Terrace of the Central Library, 14 W. 10th St., offer a tuneful sampling of what Americans were listening to 30 years ago. Featured are such musical artists as Prince and the Talking Heads, an early cinematic celebration of break dancing, and a classic cult film noted for its innovative musical soundtrack.
Friday, September 19, 2014
What are your favorite toys? What did kids play with 20, 50, 100 years ago?
In a program presented by Kansas City’s John Wornall House Museum, Jay Clasen gives kids a hands-on look at an array of antique toys from his collection. Then, he leads them in a “real life” game.
Appropriate for all ages.