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New-York Historical Society’s Fall/Winter Programming Highlights to Include Events with Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Samuel Alito, Photographer Annie Leibovitz, Composer Tan Dun, Professor Cornel West, and Others

What: This fall, the New-York Historical Society will engage history buffs and aficionados with the upcoming season of special programs featuring notable historians, artists, writers and journalists. Special programming in conjunction with the exhibition Chinese American: Exclusion/Inclusion (September 26, 2014 – April 19, 2015) will showcase Chinese actors, composers, and scholars.


  • The American premiere of Discovery Channel Asia’s groundbreaking series “Chineseness” will include a screening and conversation between artist Yang Chihung and series host Agnes Hsu-Tang on Thursday, October 2, 6 pm.
  • Nancy Kwan, one of the first actresses of Chinese descent to achieve fame in Western cinema, will speak with producer Susan Lacy about the defining moments of her career, sharing stories of friendships with icons such as Bruce Lee and Dean Martin, as part of the Bernard and Irene Schwartz Distinguished Speakers Series on Wednesday, October 15, 6:30 pm.
  • In 1874, 22 Chinese women were detained in San Francisco after officials determined that they were “lewd”—or prostitutes—simply because they were traveling alone. Through narration and discussion, court proceedings, and historic photographs, a cast of legal experts will share their story and reenact highlights from the legal proceedings in 22 Lewd Chinese Women: A Trial Reenactment. Denny Chin, United States Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, will take part in the reenactment on Saturday, October 18, 9:30 am.
  • Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice, U.S. Supreme Court, will discuss challenges and key moments in her accomplished career, offering personal insights into the culture of the current Supreme Court and the difference between being an advocate and a judge, in conversation with Abbe R. Gluck at the President Bill Clinton Lecture in American History on Wednesday, October 29, 6:30 pm.
  • Gen. (Ret.) David H. Petraeus offers his unique perspective on what lies ahead for U.S., NATO, and Afghan forces to aid in the region’s transition into a functioning democracy in Afghanistan: The Road Ahead, part of the Roger Hertog Lecture Series, on Tuesday, December 16, 6:30 pm.
  • Award-winning composer/conductor Tan Dun will be joined by special guest Chinese American composers for a lecture and performance program on Saturday, January 10, 7 pm that will trace their musical journey from China to America. Co-Presented by U.S. China Cultural Institute, Cultural Associate of the Committee of 100.
  • In conjunction with the Pilgrimage exhibition (on view November 21, 2014 – February 22, 2015), photographer Annie Leibovitz will discuss the origin and evolution of the project, which evokes historical subjects through landscapes, interiors of houses, and objects, on Tuesday, February 10, 6:30 pm.
  • Activist Cornel West will offer a vivid portrait of visionary 19th- and 20th-century African-American leaders and their lasting legacies on Wednesday, March 18, 6:30 pm, in a talk in conjunction with the exhibition Freedom Journey 1965: Photographs of the Selma to Montgomery March by Stephen Somerstein (on view January 19 – April 19, 2015).
  • Historian talks will include the Carl Menges Lecture in American History, featuring National Review editor Richard Brookhiser on his new book about the life of Abraham Lincoln (on Tuesday, October 21, 6:30 pm), and the Lehrman Distinguished Fellow Lectures, featuring author Andrew Roberts on Napoleon and Winston Churchill as “Leaders in War” (on Tuesday, November 18, 6:30 pm and Tuesday, January 20, 6:30 pm, respectively).

The Bernard and Irene Schwartz Classic Film Series on most Friday nights at 7 PM will focus on the theme of “Justice in Film,” with highlights to include:

  • Flower Drum Song, introduced by Judge Denny Chin and playwright David Henry Hwang (October 17);
  • Witness for the Prosecution, introduced by Associate Justice, U.S. Supreme Court, Samuel Alito, and constitutional scholar Philip C. Bobbitt (November 14);
  • I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang, introduced by Sherrilyn Ifill, President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., and Khalil Gibran Muhammad, Director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (January 30); and
  • Philadelphia, introduced by Kenji Yoshino, Professor of Constitutional Law at NYU School of Law; Robert Post, Dean of Yale Law School; and Linda Greenhouse, Lecturer at Yale Law School and Pulitzer Prize-winning writer (February 27).

WHERE: The New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West (at Richard Gilder Way, West 77th Street)
New York, NY 10024

TICKETS: Ticket prices vary by program. For more information, please call (212) 485-9268 or visit nyhistory.org/programs

About the New-York Historical Society
The New-York Historical Society, one of America’s pre-eminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting history and art exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history.

Press Contacts
Laura Washington
New-York Historical Society
(212) 873-3400 x263

Julia Esposito
Polskin Arts & Communications Counselors
(212) 715-1643


Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Creative: Tronvig Group