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Janna Levin named the 2013 da Vinci lecturer at Marshall University

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Janna Levin, professor of physics and astronomy at Barnard College of Columbia University, is the 2013 da Vinci lecturer at Marshall University.

Levin will speak at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, in room BE5 on the lower level of the Memorial Student Center on the Huntington campus. Her lecture on "The Third Culture" is free to the public.

In her talk about a growing movement deemed "The Third Culture," Levin discusses the crossover between the arts and the sciences, sharing examples of a new intellectual culture being born.

Levin was named a Guggenheim Fellow in 2012. Her scientific research concerns the early universe, chaos and black holes. Her second book – the novel A Madman Dreams of Turing Machines – won the PEN/Bingham Fellowship for Writers that "honors an exceptionally talented fiction writer whose debut work represents distinguished literary achievement." It was also a runner-up for the PEN/Hemingway award for "a distinguished book of first fiction."

She is the author of the popular science book, How the Universe Got its Spots: Diary of a Finite Time in a Finite Space.

Levin holds a B.A. in physics and astronomy from Barnard College with a concentration in philosophy, and a Ph.D. in physics from MIT. She did research at the Center for Particle Astrophysics at the University of California-Berkeley before moving to the United Kingdom to work at Cambridge University in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics.

Just before returning to New York, Levin was the first scientist-in-residence at the Ruskin School of Fine Art and Drawing at Oxford University with an award from the National Endowment for Science, Technology, and Arts. She has written for many artists and appeared on several radio and television programs.