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Houdini at Labyrinth: Robert Geddes Tricks Will Be Played Architecture and Society Alex Stone, author of Fooling Houdini : Magicians, Subject of Labyrinth Talk Mentalists, Math Geeks,

Professor emeritus and former Dean of Princeton University’s School of Architecture Robert Geddes will be discussing his new book, Fit: An Architect’s Manifesto (Princeton University Press ($19.95) at Labyrinth Books on Monday, December 10 at 6 p.m. Fit is a book about architecture and society that s e e k s to f u n d a m e nt a l ly change how architects and the public think about the task of design. Mr. Geddes argues that buildings, landscapes, and cities should be designed to fit: fit the purpose, fit the place, fit future possibilities. According to president emeritus of Harvard Universit y Neil Rudenstine, Mr. Geddes has written “a lucid, perceptive, and wise book about the fundamen-

and the Powers of the Mind (Harper $26.99), will appear at Labyrinth Books on Saturday, December 8 at 3 p.m. From the back rooms of New York City’s age-old magic societies to cuttingedge psychology labs, threecard monte games on Canal Street to glossy Las Vegas casinos, Fooling Houdini recounts the author’s quest to join the ranks of master magicians and what he encounters along the way. Labyrinth tell us that tricks will be played. In an Amazon Best Books of the Month review for June 2012, Benjamin Moebius says that in Fooling Houdini “Alex Stone reveals a world far deeper and fascinating than I ever imagined. After failing at the Magic Olympics in Stockholm, Stone gets serious about the art

of illusion. He attends magic schools and seeks out one of the best ‘card mechanics’ in the world. Along the way, he learns how criminal empires were built on age-old magic scams. He studies the art of mind-reading. And he explains how magicians exploit cognitive blind spots to make the impossible happen in public.” Alex Stone has written for Harper’s, Discover, Science, and The Wall Street Journal. He lives in New York City. ———

Persian Literary Humanism Discussed in Labyrinth Talk

L aby r i nt h B o ok s, T he Princeton Middle East Society, and Princeton University’s Near Eastern Studies Department are presenting a discussion with Hamid Dabashi, author of The World of Persian Literary Humanism ( Har vard Universit y Press $30 ), on Tuesday, December 11 at 6 p.m. According to Malise Ruthven, “In this power f ully challenging book, Hamid Dabashi not only pays tribute to the achievements of such great Persian writers as Ferdowsi and Sa’di, who expressed a subversively humanistic vision in counterpoint to the transcendental Islamic scholasticism of the past, but he also shines his intellectual spotlight on influential occidental thinkers ranging from Kant to Said, whose humanism, whether philosophical or literary, fell short of true universality. In a masterful critique of the Eurocentrism he sees as being present, if masked, in the teaching of comparative literature, he rescues Persian literature from the ‘overextended narratives of

President’s Lecture Series 2012–13 Tuesday, December 11, 2012, 4:30 p.m. Friend Center, Room 101 Free and open to the public www.princeton.edu/president/presidents_lecture_series

with the Cosmic Microwave Background David Spergel Charles A. Young YoungProfessor ProfessorofofAstronomy Astronomy Charles A. on Class of of 1897 1897Foundation Foundation on the Class Professor of Astrophysical AstrophysicalSciences Sciences Professor of

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Illuminating the History of the Universe

Orientalism and ethnic nationalism’ and shows how its vibrant aesthetic and spiritual qualities find expression in the work of contemporary writers, filmmakers, and artists. This important work of cultural history has urgent contemporary relevance.” Hamid Dabashi is Kevorkian Professor of Iranian Studies and Comparative Literature at Columbia University. He has written 25 books, including more recently Corpus Anarchicus: Political Protest, Suicidal Violence, and the Making of the Posthuman Body, The Arab Spring: The End of Postcolonialism, Shiism, Post-Orientalism, and Iran: A People Interrupted. A selected sample of his writing is The World is my Home: A Hamid Dabashi Reader. He is also the founder of Dreams of a Nation, a Palestinian Film Project, dedicated to preserving and safeguarding Palestinian cinema. ———

Library Hosts Group Reading “Holiday Pines”

Members of the Writers Room Group invite everyone to take a break from holiday preparations and join them as they read excerpts from The Holiday Pines, Wednesday, December 12, at 7 p.m. in the Community Room at Princeton Public Library. “The Holiday Pines” is the fictional newsletter of the Pine family. Writing as individual members of the family, each Writers Room Group member will present a typical holiday newsletter entry contrasted with what really happened during the past year. The Writers Room meets at the library on the first and third Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. New members are welcome. For m or e i n for m at i on about library programs and services, call ( 609 ) 9249529 or visit w w w.princ etonlibrary.org. ———

a Princeton tradition!

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TOWN TOPICS, PRINCETON, N.J., WEDNESDAY, DECEmbER 5, 2012 • 16

Books

tal elements of architecture, including the basic needs that it addresses, as well as the wide range of architectural approaches and styles available to the designer and practitioner today. He does not, fortunately, propose easy solutions to the deep challenges facing contemporary architects and urban planners.” Robert Geddes has simultaneously pursued three careers for over 50 years: one as an architect, one as educator, and another as urbanist, publishing works such as Metropolis Unbound: The Sprawling American City and the Search for Alter natives. ———

Cotsen Library Offers 350 for 50 Competition Cotsen Childrens Library’s annual writing competition has begun! Here’s how it works: write a short, 350-word story that includes the sentence, “The machine sprang to life.” Winning stories will be published in the Spring 2013 issue of the Picture Book Press, and the authors will enjoy a $50 shopping spree at Labyrinth Books! Contest submissions are due by 5 p.m. on Thursday, December 13, 2012. 350 for 50 Contest Submission Requirements Ages 8-16 • Stories must be no longer than 350 words, and must include the sentence, “The machine sprang to life.” • One submission per author. • No poems, illustrations, or comics. • One winner will be selected from each of our three age categories (ages 8-10, 11-13, and 14-16). • Stories must be submitted via e-mail to: danas@ princeton.edu • The following must be included with the submission: Your name, age (as of December 13, 2012), and mailing address. Please make sure this information is on the SAME PAGE as the story. • Winners will be notified via postal mail beginning December 18, 2012.

Town Topics Newspaper  
Town Topics Newspaper  

Issue: December 5, 2012