Harry Potter

Coming to the Briscoe Library in October: Harry Potter’s World

Hieronymus Brunschwig, 1494

Harry Potter’s World:  Renaissance Science, Magic and Medicine will open in the Briscoe Library on October 11.  The traveling exhibit, produced by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, and coordinated by the American Library Association, uses materials from the historical collection of the National Library of Medicine to explore Harry Potter’s world and its roots in Renaissance traditions.

A series of programs and a local exhibit highlighting the resources of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library have been planned for October and early November.  All events — with the exception of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library Annual Dinner –  will be held in the Howe Conference Room on the 5th floor of the Briscoe Library.

For information about the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Library Annual Dinner and Presentation, “Magic and Monsters in the Stacks: How Harry Potter Came to the National Library of Medicine,” and to purchase tickets, contact Pennie Borchers, Special Collections Librarian: borchers@uthscsa.edu.

Opening Reception and Presentation

“Renaissance Science and the Quest for Immortality: Lessons from Albus Dumbledore, Nicolas Flamel, and Isaac Newton”

C. Mackenzie Brown, Ph.D.
Jennie Farris Railey King Professor in Religion, Trinity University

Monday, October 11, 2010 – 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library Lunchtime Presentation

“Potent Potions and Healing Herbs: Medicinal Practices of the Renaissance”

Charleen M. Moore, Ph.D.
Professor, Dept. of Cellular & Structural Biology, UT Health Science Center

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 – 12:00 noon – 1:00 p.m.

Saturday Event for Children Young & Old

“A Little Muggle Magic: The Wisdom of Harry Potter for Families”

Patricia Thompson, Ph.D.
Senior Lecturer in History, UTSA

Saturday, October 23, 2010 – 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library Annual Dinner and Presentation

“Magic and Monsters in the Stacks: How Harry Potter Came to the National Library of Medicine”

Stephen J. Greenberg, M.S.L.S., Ph.D.
Coordinator of Public Services History of Medicine Division, National Library of Medicine

Monday, November 1, 2010 – 6:30 – 9:00 p.m., Doubletree Hotel

For Students Attending Science Expo

“Living Dangerously: Doctors Adrift in the Dark Ages”

Richard F. Ludueña, Ph.D.
Distinguished Teaching Professor Department of Biochemistry, UT Health Science Center

Saturday, November 6, 2010 – 2:00 and 3:00 p.m.

Harry Potter’s World at the Briscoe Library: Save the Date!

Renaissance Healers

The UT Health Science Center Libraries are pleased to announce that Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine will open in the Briscoe Library in October 2010. The traveling exhibit, produced by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, and coordinated by the American Library Association, uses materials from the historical collections of the National Library of Medicine to explore Harry Potter’s world and its roots in Renaissance traditions.

The study of Renaissance science and medicine adds a fascinating dimension to the Harry Potter stories for both children and adults. For example, alchemist Nicolas Flamel, who is fictionally featured in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, was a real 15th-century scholar whose experiments with metals influenced the development of modern chemistry.

A series of programs is being planned in conjunction with the exhibit, which will be in the Briscoe Library from October 11 to November 6, 2010. Please add these dates to your calendar. Details will be provided closer to the events. For more information contact Susan Hunnicutt, Special Projects Librarian, Hunnicutt@uthscsa.edu.

Event Dates

Opening Event and Reception:

Renaissance Science and the Quest for Immortality: Lessons from Albus Dumbledore, Nicolas Flamel, and Isaac Newton

C. Mackenzie Brown, Ph.D.
Jennie Farris Railey King Professor in Religion, Department of Religion, Trinity University
October 11, 2010. 5 pm – 7pm
Briscoe Library, Howe Conference Room

Potent Potions and Healing Herbs: Medicinal Practices of the Renaissance

Charlene M. Moore, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, UT Health Science Center
October 19, 2010. 12 noon – pm
Briscoe Library, Howe Conference Room

A Little Muggle Magic: The Wisdom of Harry Potter for Families

Pat Thompson, Ph.D.
Senior Lecturer in History, University of Texas at San Antonio
October 23, 2010, 10am – 11:30am
Briscoe Library, Howe Conference Room

Friends of the P.I. Nixon Annual Dinner and Presentation:

Magic and Monsters in the Stacks: How Harry Potter Came to the National Library of Medicine

Stephen J. Greenberg, Ph.D.
Coodinator of Public Services – History of Medicine Division, Nationl Library of Medicine
November 1, 2010. 6:30pm – 9pm
Double Tree Hotel

Living Dangerously: Doctors Adrift in the Dark Ages

Richard F. Ludueña, Ph.D.
Distinguished Teaching Professor, Department of Biochemistry, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio
November 6, 2010. 2pm – 3pm
Briscoe Library, Howe Conference Room

Harry Potter’s World: Exhibit opens this month

Stephen J. Greenberg, History of Medicine Division, National Library of Medicine

On July 21, 2007 author J.K. Rowling and her publishers released the last of her record-breaking novels featuring the young wizard Harry Potter.  Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows sold 15 million copies in the first twenty-four hours following its release.

Three days earlier, a group of middle-school visitors to the History of Medicine Division at the National Library of Medicine in Bethesda, MD were shown an early 17th century treatise with an intriguing connection to J.K. Rowling and her tales. The visitors were fascinated and wanted to know more, so the staff of the History of Medicine Division began combing the collection in search of other historical materials that are conceptually linked to the fictional world created in Rowling’s stories.  This labor eventually produced a lecture series, two Web exhibits, and a traveling exhibit that has been coordinated by the American Library Association.

Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic and Medicine, produced by the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland and coordinated by the American Library Association, will open in the Briscoe Library on October 11.

A complete schedule of events can be found on our website.

C. Mackenzie Brown, Ph.D., Jennie Farris Railey King Professor in Religion at Trinity University, will speak at the exhibit’s opening event on the topic “Renaissance Science and the Quest for Immortality: Lessons from Albus Dumbledore, Nicolas Flamel and Isaac Newton.”  The opening  will take place in the Howe Conference Room, 5th Floor of the Briscoe Library from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Annual Meeting of The Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library —  November 1

Stephen J. Greenberg, Ph.D., Coordinator of Public Services for the History of Medicine Division, National Library of Medicine, will tell the story of the Harry Potter exhibit and how it took shape at the National Library of Medicine as the speaker at this year’s meeting of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Society.  The dinner takes place November 1, 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Doubletree Hotel, 37 NE Loop 410 at McCullough.

We invite  Friends, their guests, and all those interested in the history of medicine to a terrific presentation.

Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library
40th Annual Meeting: Dinner and Presentation

“Magic & Monsters in the Stacks: How Harry Potter Came to NLM”
Monday, November 1, 2010 – Doubletree Hotel – 37 NE Loop 410 at McCullough
Cash bar:  6:30 p.m.     Dinner:  7:00 p.m.
RSVP by October 27th to Pennie Borchers: Borchers@uthscsa.edu

Harry Potter’s World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine: Calendar of Events

Illustration of an alchemy workshop, courtesy National Library of Medicine

Opening Reception and Presentation

Monday, October 11, 2010 – 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.,
Howe Conference Room

C. Mackenzie Brown, Ph.D.
Jennie Farris Railey King Professor in Religion, Department of Religion, Trinity University

“Renaissance Science and the Quest for Immortality: Lessons from Albus Dumbledore, Nicolas Flamel, and Isaac Newton

What do Sir Isaac Newton, Albus Dumbledore, and Professor Severus Snape have in common?  What is the difference between the Philosopher’s Stone, a Horcrux, and a Crucifix? What does J.K. Rowling share with the gospel writer Matthew?  Dr. C. Mackenzie Brown will answer these questions in exploring the relation of religion and natural philosophy in the Renaissance and Enlightenment, and their role in the development of modern science.

Friends Lunchtime Presentation

Tuesday, October 19, 2010 – 12:00 noon – 1:00 p.m.
Pestana Lecture Hall

Charleen M. Moore, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Cellular & Structural Biology, UT Health Science Center

“Potent Potions and Healing Herbs: Medicinal Practices of the Renaissance”

Would you like to have a recipe for a “good vomit” or learn how to make an effective theriac?  Do you know why Professor Sprout wore earmuffs or how to diagnose melancholy from a urine sample? You will find the answers to these questions in the talk by Dr. Charleen Moore on the medicinal practices of the Renaissance. She will also discuss the humeral basis of disease and describe two of the oldest medicinal botanical gardens in the world at Padua and Oxford.

Saturday Event for Young Readers

Saturday, October 23, 2010 – 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.
Howe Conference Room

Patricia Thompson, Ph.D.
Senior Lecturer in History, University of Texas at San Antonio

“A Little Muggle Magic: The Wisdom of Harry Potter for Families”

Having read the entire Potter series eight times over  and gathered insights from a large brood of grandsons, Dr. Thompson is eminently qualified to reflect on the most interesting customs of both the muggle and the magical worlds.

For Students Attending Science Expo

Saturday, November 6, 2010 – 2:00 and 3:00 p.m.
Howe Conference Room

Richard F. Ludueña, Ph.D.
Distinguished Teaching Professor, Department of Biochemistry, UT Health Science Center

“Living Dangerously: Doctors Adrift in the Dark Ages”

In the Middle Ages, there were a few good doctors and lots of bad ones, operating in a context of  ignorance.  The practice of medicine was very dangerous for patients—and even for doctors– who met various unpleasant ends when their medicine failed, as it often did.

Renaissance Science, Magic and Medicine: Local exhibit showcases the resources of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library

“Instead of roots, a small, muddy, and extremely ugly baby popped out of the earth. The leaves were growing right out of his head. He had pale green, mottled skin, and was clearly bawling at the top of his lungs.” – from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, J.K. Rowling

A new exhibit mounted in the lecture hall foyer was created by Pennie Borchers, Special Collections Librarian, as a companion piece to the NLM traveling exhibit, Harry Potter’s World.  The themes are similar – alchemy, medicine, herbology and monsters – but the local display highlights materials found in the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library.  There are images from Vesalius’ anatomical atlas, Paré’s book on teratology, Bartisch’s classic work on ophthalmology, Dürer’s canon of proportions, and many more.  The exhibit will remain on display through early November.

Harvesting mandrake, from Histoire de la Medecine, de la Pharmacie, de l/Art Dentaire et de l'Art Veterinarire

“Like Harry’s professors, many Renaissance thinkers valued the study of the natural world. For example, both the naturalist Konrad Gesner and the surgeon Ambroise Paré argued that knowing more about the living things around them would help them to better understand the way the world worked. Their publications often catalogued the traits and medicinal value of odd creatures, including some featured hundreds of years later in Harry Potter.”  - from exhibit brochure, Harry Potter’s World, Renaissance Science, Magic and Medicine, produced by the National Library of Medicine