What We Can Do – Climate Change

When Andréa Grottoli, Professor in the School of Earth Sciences at OSU, presented on the resiliency and vulnerability of corals to rising temperatures and ocean acidity, she referred to a list of political and home-based actions people can take to help.

Points include: Apply political pressure with your vote, supporting coral reef research and reducing CO2.

Prof. Grottoli shows us just how much CO2 per year is reduced by taking simple steps such as filling up the dishwasher before running it, wearing a sweater at home, and installing a low-flow shower head. See more suggestions for individual actions in the linked document below, and feel free to share it!

What can we do to protect coral reefs-1s2r79r

Earthworks Rising


You can view and interact with Christine Ballengee Morris’s website about the Ohio Earthworks, complete with games and explorations and visualizations, which she presented in her talk with Marti Chaatsmith, Associate Director of the Newark Earthworks Center at the Ohio State University.

Octagon Earthworks Open House April 8-9, 2018

Conference goers are incredibly fortunate to have the opportunity to visit the Octagon State Memorial this coming week, coinciding with the week of our conference, and the presentation on the Earthworks by Marti Chaatsmith and Christine Ballengee-Morris. The entire memorial is not generally accessible to the public, so the opportunity to take a guided tour is one not to be missed. I attended the last open house  in October and the guided tour explained the remarkable dimensions and alignments of the earthworks, their relation to one another and to the cycles of the moon, and possible ways the earthworks were used by the Hopewell people who built them.

Check them out in person so you can have an even more vivid appreciation of the conference presentation!



Lecture: “Chinese Music and the Concept of Time”

Ohio State University’s Institute for Chinese Studies is presenting a lecture by Prof. Udo Will, a cognitive ethnomusicologist,* about the contrast in contemporary Chinese music between western musical temporal structures and traditional Chinese views on temporal experience.

For those of us interested in cross cultural and cross-disciplinary examinations of time, this lecture will be fascinating!

“Chinese Music and the Concept of Time”

Prof. Udo Will

Friday, February 16, 2018
4:00-5:30 pm
Mendenhall Lab 191
125 S Oval Mall

Udo Will Flyer-2fxtgzs

*Cognitive Musicology is a specialty at Ohio State: “Cognitive ethnomusicology relates cultural and biological factors of music making and experience. It aims to understand how and to what extent cognitive processes in music production and perception are influenced by cultural factors.”

Time Blindness

Discussions of ADD/ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) include the term “time blindness,” a remarkably resonant image. The idea is that adults and children have chronic difficulties engaging with and managing time spans and things related to them like sequencing activities, deadlines or organization. In an article about ADHD in the US News and World Report in July 2017, Ari Tuckman, a clinical psychologist, described two strategies people use to address the challenges that come with time blindness: “seeing time” and “feeling time.”

As someone who is very interested in the construction of time in different cultures and disciplines, it is interesting to see how this psychologist uses human temporal perception as a central component to designing practical strategies for people.  Seeing time, in Tuckman’s approach, is using an analog clock, for example, so a person can chart the spatial expression of duration, of time “passing.” Feeling time for Tuckman is remembering and then projecting feelings the person has experienced when a deadline is almost passed or past, and using that as a deterrent to procrastinating. You can read the full article here. On Feb 5, 2017, the Washington Post carried a related article, available here.



Wexner Center for the Arts hosts Time exhibition February-April 15

We are delighted to announce that the Wexner Center for the Arts, on OSU’s Columbus campus, will shortly open its spring exhibition (Feb 3-April 15, 2018) and it is all about time.


From the Wexner Center‘s website:

“Experience the fusion of art, science, and history, and explore thought-provoking ideas about time in this spectacularly immersive installation by acclaimed artist William Kentridge. Combining projections of his evocative, often-humorous hand-drawn animations and live-action sequences with music and sculpture, The Refusal of Time is as visually stunning as it is mind-opening.

The project evolved from Kentridge’s conversations with Harvard professor Peter Galison about revolutions in the conception of time around the dawn of the 20th century—from Albert Einstein’s radical theory of relativity to new attempts to standardize time, a means of asserting control and fortifying colonization. The latter is an ongoing theme for Kentridge, who lives and works in South Africa.

For The Refusal of Time, Kentridge transforms the space of a gallery into a vibrant theater of activity where you’ll move among screens, dispersed crates and chairs, large megaphones, and at the center, a mysteriously imposing wooden device. Appearing to breathe, the machine seems to power the images and sounds that fill your senses.”

Since our conference takes place in the final week of this exhibition, perhaps those who wish can arrange to see the exhibition together on the Friday following the conference, or on a day preceding it. It will be wonderful to discuss together.


Accuracy in Dating Ancient Sources

How calendrically and chronologically precise can historians and archaeologists be when they write about antiquity?  This article begins with the problem of accurate dating of ancient sources for which no calendrical information is given. It ends with the intriguing suggestion that the science of dendrochronology can offer a potential avenue to help Egyptologists be more precise about the history they write about early periods of ancient Egypt.
Tree-ring dating has also popped up recently in discussions of ancient Rome.  Above is a tree is dated to the year 212, an important year in the history of the Roman Empire:

You can learn more about the Arizona Tree Ring Lab and the field of Dendrochronology here:  http://ltrr.arizona.edu
-Sarit Kattan Gribetz

Time in Film: Focus on “Arrival” (2016)

An example of the alien language in “Arrival”

Many films address temporal themes. A recent example, “Arrival” directed by Denis Villeneuve (2016), not only makes the hero an academic (special appreciation of that), it considers how language can change one’s perception of time. Rather than introducing a new time-travel technology as many time-related movies have, “Arrival” explores how different languages and cultures produce different temporal perceptions, which connects nicely with the premise of our conference.

Here is an article about the linguistic creativity underlying the film.

Conference Preview

Our conference presenters will speak about time as it appears, is used and is understood in many different cultures and disciplines. Leading up to April 11-12, 2018 this page will provide brief glimpses of the presenters’ chosen topics.

Octagon State Memorial, Ohio

Christine Ballengee-Morris, Professor in the OSU Department of Arts Administration, Education and Policy and of American Indian Studies and Maarti Chaatsmith, Interim Director of the Newark Earthworks Center, will present temporality as it relates to the Newark Earthworks, a 2000-year old site built by the Hopewell people here in Ohio. For more information:

The Newark Earthworks: Enduring Monuments, Contested Meanings (edited by Dr. Lindsay Jones and Dr. Richard Shiels, University of Virginia Press, 2016)