Spoken Word


Start Smart, Get Smarter!

“SmartTalks” is a series of captivating speakers–scholars and authors who are experts in their field–to broaden our horizons and challenge conventional wisdom. Exploring the intersections between the arts and humanities, plus science and technology, this lecture series brings some unusual and innovative thinkers to illuminate our daily lives with new perspectives.

All lectures begin at 2:30PM.  Seating is General Admission.  All sales are final.

Series Subscription: There is an $8 handling fee per subscription.
Museum Members: $80
Non-Members: $120

Single tickets go on sale the day of the event, subject to availability.

Purchase the series.

Box Office: 973.971.3706

Underground: A Human History of the Worlds Beneath Our Feet
Monday, April 29, 2019

Hear a panoramic investigation of the subterranean landscape, from sacred caves and derelict subway stations to nuclear bunkers and ancient underground cities—an exploration of the history, science, architecture, and mythology of the worlds beneath our feet.

Will Hunt’s writing, photography, and audio storytelling have appeared in The Economist, The Atavist, The Paris Review Daily, Discover, Men’s Journal, Audible Originals, and Outside, among other places. He has received grants and fellowships from the Thomas J. Watson Foundation, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and The Macdowell Colony. Currently, Will is a visiting scholar at the NYU Institute for Public Knowledge. Underground is his first book.


Using Artificial Intelligence for Robust Personalized Learning of Science
Monday, May 6, 2019

An innovator in developing new technology for use in science education, Dr. Janice Gobert introduces how advances in artificial intelligence can revolutionize science education.

Dr. Janice Gobert is a Professor of Learning Sciences and Educational Psychology at
Rutgers Graduate School of Education (https://gse.rutgers.edu/janice_gobert). She is
also the CEO of a start-up company named Apprendis, whose products are Inq-ITS
(Inquiry Intelligent tutoring System) for students, and Inq-Blotter, an alerting platform for
teachers to accompany Inq-ITS (www.apprendis.com). Gobert holds 4 patents for her
work in the areas of science assessment and eye tracking during learning.


Sarah Demers (Left) and Emily Coates (Right). Photo by Michael Marsland.

Physics and Dance
Monday, May 13, 2019

Requiring no previous knowledge of dance or physics, this introduction covers the fundamentals while revealing how a dialogue between art and science can enrich our appreciation of both. Readers will come away with a broad cultural knowledge of Newtonian to quantum mechanics and classical to contemporary dance.

Including problem sets and choreographic exercises to solidify understanding, this book will be of interest to anyone curious about physics or dance.

Emily Coates is associate professor adjunct of theater studies at Yale University, where she created the Dance Studies curriculum.

Sarah Demers is Horace D. Taft Associate Professor of Physics at Yale University, where she is ATLAS Upgrade Physics convener and works on the Mu2e trigger. Their work has been featured in the World Science Festival and covered in the New York Times and the New Yorker.