Kid Stuff

"We’re able to bring some very sophisticated theater to this festival, and we’re completely confident that our audience will accept it," said Brian Joyce,

director of the Philadelphia International Children’s Festival at the Annenberg Center, shortly before the annual festival got underway in May. "The festival has become more sophisticated because it has trained its own audience."
    Judging from the packed theaters and squeals of laughter that greeted such innovative fare as Thomas Kubinek’s one-strange-man show and the Canadian Theatre de l’Oeil’s other-worldly puppet performance, The Star Keeper (left), Joyce had sized up his audience right.
Michael Rose, managing director of the Annenberg Center, noted that the choral music and tribal dances of Black Umfolosi were very popular with Philadelphia school children, while the preview picnic for Penn faculty and staff (top) was a "great success.


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Rubin Advises Acting on the Certainty of Uncertainty
Photo by Tommy LeonardiWHEN Robert E. Rubin’s father attended college, he signed up for a philosophy course with a renowned professor. "On the first day of class, the professor debated the question of whether you could prove that the table at the front of the room existed," noted Rubin, secretary of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, in his address at Penn’s 243rd Commencement. "My father was, and is, very bright and very pragmatic. He went to the front of the room, pounded on the table with his hand–and dropped out of the course." Continued...

Illustration by Matt WawiorkaMEDICAL RESEARCH
Staving Off STDs and ... Cavities?
A POTENTIALLY powerful new weapon against sexually-transmitted diseases–under development by a couple of Penn-connected researchers–may already be in your medicine cabinet. Continued...

Fathoming the Mysteries of
the Black Sea
FIVE years ago, Fredrik Hiebert was on his way to Turkmenistan to lead an archaeology project for Harvard University when he got a telephone call from deep-sea explorer Robert Ballard. Hiebert, now the Robert H. Dyson Assistant Professor and Assistant Curator of Near Eastern Archaeology at the University Museum, recalls the conversation that followed: Continued...

Illustration by Celia JohnsonLECTURE
Womens Studies: Breaking the Silence, Shaping the Future
"PATRIARCHY, a system of social organization well-established for more than 2,500 years, is dying," declared Dr. Gerda Lerner, on campus in April to deliver the 1999 Judith Berkowitz Endowed Lecture in Women’s Studies. "Whether modern feminism is its gravedigger or merely a response to its death spasms is a matter of opinion. If we are to survive, it will have to be with a social organization better adapted to the 21st century than is patriarchy." Continued...

Fox Gives $10 Million for Leadership Program

NOTING that "leadership comes not just from innate qualities but by nurturing and developing skills at the earliest possible opportunity," Robert A. Fox C’52 has given $10 million to the College of Arts and Sciences to establish the Robert A. Fox Leadership Program. Continued...

Penns Health System Lays Off 450
an effort to balance its budget, the University of Pennsylvania Health System has eliminated 1,100 positions and laid off 450 employees. Most of the layoffs are at the management level–in such departments as finance, human resources, public relations, marketing and facilities management–and nearly half of the eliminated positions were already vacant. None of the system’s 5,000 academic employees are affected. Continued...

Sweating It Out Over Sweatshops
the question-and-answer part of a recent roundtable that tackled the ethics of sweatshop-produced university apparel, a member of the audience stood up to challenge the roundtable’s consensus that universities could help remedy working conditions in the Third World.




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Freshmen to Visit Copenhagen

The incoming Class of 2003 will be probing some charged matter this summer in the form of Copenhagen, Michael Frayn’s theatrical examination of morality and the atomic bomb.
Set in Copenhagen in 1941, the play imagines the historical meeting between Danish physicist Niels Bohr and German physicist Werner Heisenberg, whose collaborative work had revolutionized atomic physics. The discussions between those once-close friends who had become political enemies "force us to consider some elemental questions," said David Fox, the theater-arts lecturer who serves as director of the Penn Reading Project this year.
In choosing Copenhagen, which is scheduled to have a Broadway production next spring, the selection committee cited the "multidisciplinary nature of the text, the timeliness of the theme and the great possibilities for supporting events." The incoming freshmen will discuss the play extensively in small groups after they arrive on campus in September.