Mark Bedau ’76,
professor of philosophy and humanities, will be participating in an international integrated
by the European Union, to study the foundations of programmable artificial cells. Bedau is joining
with scientists from eight European countries and the U.S. to work toward the creation of autonomous
cells—nanorobots—that are biochemically programmed to perform simple functions. Bedau
will be a major contributor in data analysis and experimental design, along with Norman Packard ’76,
of ProtoLife Srl. in Venice, Italy. Packard and Bedau were friends as freshmen, and Bedau said
that “Reed helped us think that no question is too big or too hard.”
A research project on Portland Muslim history, led by Kambiz
GhaneaBassiri, assistant professor of religion and humanities, was awarded $6,000 from
Harvard University’s Pluralism Project. The funds will support summer research done by
two Reed students, and GhaneaBassiri will use the results in a long-term project on a scholarly
history of Muslim built communities. The summer research will include interviews that will
contribute to an oral history of Portland’s Muslim community.
Glasfeld, associate professor of chemistry, was awarded $174,000 from the National Institutes
of Health as principal investigator in a research project on manganese binding regulatory proteins.
Glasfeld and his collaborators will use x-ray crystallography, calorimetry, and fluorescence
to study two bacterial metalloregulatory proteins that bind DNA in the process of manganese
Wasserstrom delivered the annual Peter Craigie Memorial Lecture at the University of
Calgary in January. In his lecture Wasserstrom reconsidered the “former consensus” of
monotheism shared by Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and suggested that developments in geopolitics
and science are forcing a re-examination of that consensus. He also conducted a seminar at
the university on the role played by Hermes the Monotheist in stimulating an inter-religious
scientific culture. Wasserstrom, Moe and Izetta Tonkon Professorof Judaic Studies and Humanities,
also gave the keynote address at Ohio State University at an April conference on religious
freedom and privacy in a global context.
The artwork of Geraldine Ondrizek,
associate professor of art, was exhibited this winter at the Solomon Fine Art gallery in Seattle.
In Obscured Elements Ondrizek continued her exploration of the meanings hidden within
DNA and RNA—determinants of identity and life span— by recreating the symbols of
her own family’s chromosome patterns. The sculptures and installations incorporated stitching
and ink on fabric, translating both medical information and cultural iconography.
Obscured Elements by Geraldine Ondrizek
The Detroit Symphony Orchestra and jazz violinist Regina Carter premiered “4
Sisters,” by David Schiff, R.P. Wollenberg Professor
of Music, in January. The Detroit News called the concerto “a smartly focused
essay that swings.” The four movements of the piece—”Soul,” “Scat,” “Satin,” and “Sass”—refer
to Aretha Franklin, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, and Sarah Vaughan. “Schiff’s
clever profiles cast the violin in energetic, funky and certainly soulful relief against an orchestra
that evoked the high-voltage spirit, if not exactly the colors, of a big jazz band,” wrote
critic Lawrence B. Johnson. Another of Schiff’s works, “New York Nocturnes,” was
performed by the Apollo Trio in February in Reading, Pennsylvania.