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Program of interest
University of Tennessee Libraries to host second session, "Robotics," of
its Research Revolution Video Discussion Series

Knoxville, TN. - The University of Tennessee Libraries will screen "Into
the Body," an award-winning documentary film that examines the new
frontiers that blur the lines between science fact and science fiction,
and between man and machine.

Recent developments in technology and genetic engineering have highlighted
advancements in the field of robotics in which a different kind of
humanity is becoming reality. Is tampering with genetic evolution our
greatest source of liberation or our greatest danger? Is mortality really
essential to what it means to be human?

This is the second of a FREE six-part viewing, reading and discussion
series called "Research Revolution: Science and The Shaping of Modern
Life." The University of Tennessee Libraries has been selected to
participate in the project organized by National Video Resources (NVR) in
partnership with the American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs
Office. The project is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and
supported locally by Knox County Public Library, Preston Medical Library,
and the UT Science Forum.

The "Research Revolution" invites the public to discuss and discover the
impact of research-based science and technological "progress" on everyday
life. The first program focusing on The Atomic Age was held on Tuesday,
January 27, 2004 at 7:00 PM. Other sessions include Robotics (2/10/04),
Genetics (2/24/04), Forensics (3/9/04), Global Warming (3/23/04) and
Biodiversity (4/6/04). All programs will be held at 7:00 PM at Pendergrass
Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine Library. For details and directions,
please visit http://www.lib.utk.edu/mediacenter/revolution or contact Troy
Davis at 865-974-6396, and/or troydavis@utk.edu.

Dr. Mark Littmann, Chair of Excellence in Science, Technology and Medical
Writing, will lead a discussion of each session's award winning
documentary. Dr. Littman directs the Science Communication Program and
teaches science writing and other courses for the School of Journalism.
Dr. Littmann's most recent books are "The Heavens on Fire: The Great
Leonid Meteor Storms" and "Totality: Eclipses of the Sun."

"I, like many others, harbor a deep ambivalence regarding recent
developments in robotics, and, as we discussed in our last session on the
atomic age, a blind devotion to scientific 'progress' is often marked by
both humor and hubris," said Troy Davis, Media Services Librarian. "This
session's documentary film, "Into the Body," does a great job capturing
the anxiety and fascination that attends our understanding of the field of
robotics, but goes even further by pointing to a more fascinating and
anxious question; that of mortality itself. "Into the Body" makes a
provocative and discussion-worthy connection between scientific
discoveries and subsequent community awareness of their effects. This film
is thus a great contribution to a series of independently produced
documentary films that ask hard questions about the effects, good and bad,
of research-based science."

(c) 2004, University of Tennessee Library, Knoxville

Related Link: Series Information

Posted by mjb
Feb. 06, 2004