Member-Led Forum

Upcoming event

Socrates Café

Mon, May 23 2016 - 6:30pm

On one Monday evening of every month the Humanities Forum sponsors Socrates Café at The Commonwealth Club. Each meeting is devoted to the discussion of a philosophical topic chosen at that meeting. The group's facilitator, John Nyquist, invites participants to suggest topics, which are then voted on. The person who proposed the most popular topic is asked to briefly explain why she or he considers that topic interesting and important. An open discussion follows, and the meeting ends with a summary of the various perspectives participants expressed. Read more »

Upcoming event

Food Addiction 2.0

Image - Robert Lustig
Mon, May 9 2016 - 12:00pm

Michael Prager, Author, Fat Boy Thin Man
Nicole Avena, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Florida
Robert H. Lustig, M.D., Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Endocrinology, UCSF
Eric Stice, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist, Oregon Research Institute
Vera Ingrid Tarman, MD., MSc., FCEP, CASAM, Medical Director, Renascent
Elissa Epel, Ph.D., Associate Professor, UCSF Department of Psychiatry Read more »

Upcoming event

Socrates Café

Mon, Apr 25 2016 - 6:30pm

On one Monday evening of every month the Humanities Forum sponsors Socrates Café at The Commonwealth Club. Each meeting is devoted to the discussion of a philosophical topic chosen at that meeting. The group's facilitator, John Nyquist, invites participants to suggest topics, which are then voted on. The person who proposed the most popular topic is asked to briefly explain why she or he considers that topic interesting and important. An open discussion follows, and the meeting ends with a summary of the various perspectives participants expressed. Read more »

Upcoming event

Humanities West Book Discussion: How the Irish Saved Civilization

Image - The Commonwealth Club of California
Mon, Apr 25 2016 - 5:00pm

Join us to discuss Thomas Cahill's book How the Irish Saved Civilization. In his entertaining and compelling narrative, Cahill tells the story of how Europe evolved from the classical age of Rome to the medieval era and argues that, without the help of Irish monks and Irish culture, that transition could not have taken place. Discussion led by Lynn Harris. 

Upcoming event

San Francisco International Airport: A Leader in Environment and Sustainability

Image - The Commonwealth Club of California
Tue, Apr 19 2016 - 6:00pm

John Martin, Airport Director, San Francisco International Airport

San Francisco International Airport is a leader in mitigating the environmental impact of airport operations and in adopting sustainability facilities and practices. From reducing greenhouse gas emissions to building LEED-certified terminals to providing habitats for endangered species, the San Francisco International Airport has long set the standards for sustainability for large and small public and private agencies and organizations. 

Upcoming event

Gamechanging California Elections

Mon, Apr 11 2016 - 6:00pm

Steve Swatt, Former Political Journalist, United Press International and KCRA TV Sacramento
Susie Swatt, Former Key Staffer, California Legislature; Former Special Assistant, California Fair Political Practices Commission
Jeff Raimundo, Former Political Reporter, Sacramento Bee and McClatchy Newspapers
Rebecca LaVally, Instructor, Sacramento State University; Former Sacramento Bureau Chief, United Press International Read more »

Upcoming event

Running with Rhinos: Stories from a Radical Conservationist

Image - Edward Warner
Wed, Apr 6 2016 - 6:00pm

Edward Warner, Author; Philanthropist; Former Exploration Geologist

Fewer than 5,000 black rhinos remain in the wilds of sub-Saharan Africa. Few if any laymen like Warner have been invited to care for them in the wild, some of the most dangerous volunteer fieldwork around. It gave him the opportunity to pursue and refine his emerging philosophy of radical conservationism, to cultivate partnerships between local communities and private landowners in Africa, and to export the lessons about land and wildlife management back home to the United States. 

Upcoming event

Joe Lurie: Perceptions and Misperceptions in a Globalized Polarized World

Image - Joe Lurie
Wed, Mar 30 2016 - 7:00pm

Joe Lurie, Executive Director Emeritus, International House, UC Berkeley; Author

The Commonwealth Club is offering an encore performance of Joe Lurie's recent sold-out program in San Francisco. Inspired by a West African proverb that says “The stranger sees only what he knows,” Joe Lurie shares a feast of cross-cultural stories and misadventures, exploring the deeper cultural messages that escape people who hear largely what they’re used to hearing and see mostly what they’re used to seeing. Read more »

Upcoming event

Fidel Castro Didn't Show up for Rehearsal: How I Produced the First New Cuban Opera in 50 Years ... and Survived

Image - Charles Koppelman
Wed, Mar 30 2016 - 6:00pm

Charles Koppelman, Producer, Writer, Librettist

Cubanacan, the first new Cuban opera since that country’s revolution, is the story of Fidel Castro commissioning architect Ricardo Porro to design and build art schools on the site of the Havana Country Club in 1961. Koppelman will present video excerpts from the opera’s performance at the Havana Bienal last May, reveal the 13-year journey of this project, and explain what it's like to work in Cuba at the dawn of U.S.-Cuban rapprochement. 

Upcoming event

National Security, Privacy, and Freedom of Expression Online

Image - National Security, Privacy, and Freedom of Expression Online
Wed, Mar 30 2016 - 6:00pm

David Kaye, U.N. Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression; Author, HRC 2015—Report on Encryption and Anonymity in Digital Communications
In conversation with Jacob Foster, Attorney, Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman LLP; Served in the Office of the Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court Read more »

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