September 14th 2015
Jim J Zebroski of the Aldrich Astronomical Society will be giving a talk on Mars as our kickoff event for this year's Somerville Reads. Zebroski will discuss the history of humanity's fascination with the red planet and our ever-increasing knowledge of it thanks to satellites, probes, and unmanned rovers. There will also be a touch table with replica samples of Martian soil and model rovers.
If the weather's good and the skies are clear, Zebroski will take the audience outside to look at Mars... Read Post
September 11th 2015
Just a reminder: technology instruction classes at Somerville Community Access Television (90 Unions Square) start next month. Whether it's computer basics, getting the most out of your smart phone, or something else you want to know, instructors Erica Jones of SCATV and Heidi Downing of SPL are available to help. For more information or to schedule an appointment, go here.
June 26th 2015
It's been a big week at the Supreme Court: the Affordable Care Act upheld, gay marriage bans struck down, and a blow struck against housing discrimination. The Supreme Court's rulings have had a profound impact on American society: their decision in Brown v. The Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas (1954) ultimately ended legal school segregation; New York v. Sullivan (1964) established certain protections for the press. The profundity of the Court's influence is ironic given that when it... Read Post
June 22nd 2015
The screening of "A Jihad for Love," a documentary about LGBT Muslims, planned for June 26 at SCATV, has been cancelled.
June 2nd 2015
Join us at the Central Library next Monday June 8 at 7 pm as Jessa Lingel of Microsoft Research talks about libraries, information centers and access to books in the West Bank. In April 2015, Jessa was a member of a delegation from Librarians and Archivists with Palestine (LAP) who traveled to the West Bank to meet with representatives of cultural centers, librarians and community education centers. They participated in workshops on topics such as access to information, library science... Read Post
May 21st 2015
SPL is partnering with SCATV, the Massachusetts Cultural Council,f and The Growing Center to host a summer movie series!
The summer cinematic fun begins July 1 with the classic comedy horror rock musical (I love it that I have an occasion to use those five words sequentially) Little Shop of Horrors. Details below:
May 18th 2015
Join us at the Central Library at 7 pm this Wednesday for our annual talk on researching the history of your house and your family.
I will cover the basic principles and resources of genealogical research and Kristi Chase of City Historic Preservation will show you how to discover the history of your house: who owned it before you, when it was built and how it's changed.
May 1st 2015
Join us at the Central Library on Thursday, May 7th at 7:00 p.m. for “I Am Neither of the West Nor the East: What Islamic Spirituality Can Offer the Secular West,” an exploration of aspects of Islamic tradition, philosophy and culture that have inspired members of the secular and Christian worlds. Poet, filmmaker, and Harvard doctoral student in Religion Kythe Heller will give a talk on the critically acclaimed memoir, The Butterfly Mosque, the story of G. Willow Wilson, a secular American... Read Post
March 26th 2015
On November 18, 1985, people across the country opened their newspapers (this was back when most people read newspapers) and met a sandy-haired six-year old named Calvin and his stuffed (but sentient) tiger Hobbes. Calvin was every babysitter's nightmare, the bane of his teachers, Dennis the Menace on speed (but with a much better vocabulary and a more interesting mind). He was a source of nonstop stress for his parents and a constant torment to his neighbor Susie.
Of course readers fell in... Read Post
March 17th 2015
Power. Ferocity. Majesty and mystery.
Human beings have invested birds of prey with these qualities for thousands of years. Their abilities to do the amazing continue to inspire our thoughts and excite our imaginations. But which ideas about these birds are facts and which are fictions? Come to the Central Library this Sunday (March 22nd) at 2:00 p.m. to find out! This program uses live birds of prey to explore what makes a “bird of prey,” the role they play in the environment, and how... Read Post
March 16th 2015
Please join us as we celebrate Women’s History Month by welcoming performer Rita Parisi of Waterfall Productions for a theatrical storytelling (not a reading) of three weird tales by Sarah Orne Jewett. The program will be held at the Central Library on Saturday, March 21st at 2:00 p.m.
Sarah Orne Jewett, a native of South Berwick, Maine, was one of New England’s most prolific female authors of the nineteenth century. Her stories highlight the everyday lives of New Englanders at this time,... Read Post
March 5th 2015
Here is part 2 of the Q & A with Dr. Alice LoCicero, who will be at the Central Library on Thursday, March 19th at 7:00 p.m. to discuss her new book, Why “Good Kids” Turn Into Deadly Terrorists: Deconstructing the Accused Boston Marathon Bombers and Others Like Them.
Aren’t you afraid that people will disparage you for writing about the perpetrators?
Yes. And I hope people will understand after talking with me for a few minutes that my goal is prevention, plain and simple. As a social... Read Post
March 4th 2015
Cambridge author Alice LoCicero will be at the Central Library on Thursday, March 19th at 7:00 p.m. to discuss her new book, Why "Good Kids" Turn Into Deadly Terrorists: Deconstructing the Accused Boston Marathon Bombers and Others Like Them.
In her book, Dr. LoCicero argues that the exploitation, by opportunistic zealots, of children and young adults—whether from Sri Lanka, Somalia, Tunisia, or her own hometown of Cambridge, MA—can be stopped. After years of research into youth violence and... Read Post
February 24th 2015
Join us at the Central Library on Wednesday, March 4th at 7:00 p.m. as we welcome Nan Levinson, author of War Is Not a Game: the New Antiwar Soldiers and the Movement They Built.
On July 23, 2004, five marines, two soldiers, and one airman became the most unlikely of antiwar activists. Young and gung-ho when they first signed up to defend their country, they were sent to fight a war that left them confused, enraged, and haunted. Once they returned home, they became determined to put their... Read Post
February 13th 2015
Worried about how much of your personal information Google, Facebook, and other online software providers have collected?
Concerned about overbroad government surveillance programs hoovering up your private
data? Uneasy about criminal hackers who might seek to exploit you?
Our online privacy is indeed under threat, but the good news is that there are technology tools to help us fight back. Join us at the Central Library, February 21 at 11:00 a.m. Alison Macrina, a librarian and privacy rights... Read Post