The Johan Skytte Prize in Political Science was recently presented to Juan Linz, Sterling Professor of Political and Social Science. Presented annually by the Skytteanska Stifelsen of Sweden, this prize is the only international award in the field of political science. It is named for Johan Skytte 1577-1645, a Swedish scholar and statesman who served as governor of Finland and Livonia, founded the University of Dorpat in Estonia and served for 28 years as chancellor of the University of Uppsala. Professor Linz was cited for his "global investigation of the fragility of democracy in the face of authoritarian threat characterized by methodological versatility and historical and sociological breadth." As part of the award ceremonies, a wreath was laid at the tomb of Johan Skytte at the Uppsala Cathedral, and Professor Linz gave a lecture and attended a banquet in his honor, where he was presented with the prize and accompanying silver chain with medallion. The first Skytte Prize in 1995 was awarded to Robert Dahl, Sterling Professor Emeritus of Political Science.
Two professors at the School of Music -- Jesse Levine, music director of the Norwalk Symphony Orchestra NSO, and Aldo Parisot, director of the Yale Cellos -- will share conducting responsibilities when the two musical groups present a concert at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14, in the Norwalk Concert Hall, 125 East Ave. in Norwalk. The concert, part of the NSO's "Celebrate the Sound" series, will include works by Bach, Vivaldi, Puccini, Strauss, Villa-Lobos and Hovhannes. Singer Jennifer Casey Cabot, a graduate of the School of Music, will also be featured in the performance. Prior to the concert, at 7:15 p.m., Professor Levine will present an informal talk about the music. Ticket prices range from $15 to $34; to order tickets, call 203- 866-2455 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Friday.
There will be a book signing for "The Best Interests of the Child," a revised and updated version of three previous books by three Yale-affiliated authors, 5:30-7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 12, at Foundry Bookstore, 33 Whitney Ave. in New Haven. On hand to celebrate the publication will be the book's three authors: Joseph Goldstein, Sterling Professor Emeritus of Law, the Ruttenberg Professorial Lecturer in Law and a professor at the Child Study Center; Dr. Albert Solnit, Sterling Professor Emeritus of Pediatrics and Psychiatry, a senior research scientist at the Child Study Center and coordinator of the Muriel Gardiner Program in Psychoanalysis and the Humanities; and Sonja Goldstein, a lecturer on family and the law at the Child Study Center. "The Best Interests of the Child"incorporates elements from the authors' previous works "In the Best Interests of the Child," "Before the Best Interests of the Child" and "Beyond the Best Interests of the Child." If you are unable to attend, but would like to receive an autographed copy of the book, call 624-8282.
Also on the local literary scene: There will be a book signing for "Mary Through the Centuries" by Yale historian Jaroslav Pelikan 5:30-7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 13, at Atticus Bookstore, 1082 Chapel St. in New Haven. The book examines how Mary has been depicted through the ages in literature, art, music, and social and political history, and how her image has shaped religion as it is today. Published by the Yale University Press, the book is based on the series of DeVane Lectures presented by Professor Pelikan at Yale in 1995. If you are unable to attend, but would like to receive an autographed copy of the book, call 776-4040.
Yale is sponsoring a Children's Holiday Tea, which will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14, at the New Haven Colony Historical Society, 114 Whitney Ave. At the event, children's author Paula Feder will read from her books "Where Does the Teacher Live?" and "Did You Lose the Car Again?" Also featured will be music from the Neighborhood Music School and refreshments. Donations of new and unwrapped toys for the Toy Closets Program at Yale Children's Hospital would be welcomed. Tickets are $5; reservations are encouraged. For information, call 562-4183.
Kai Erikson, professor of sociology and American studies, was the guest of honor at the Erikson Institute's dedication and first public display of two original manuscripts by his father, psychoanalyst Erik Erikson 1902-94. The manuscripts, "Identity: Youth and Crisis" and "Young Man Luther," were gifts to the institute from the elder Erikson in 1971; they will remain on permanent view. The occasion coincided with the 30-year anniversary of the founding of Erikson Institute, a private graduate school and research center for advanced study in child development, affiliated with Loyola University of Chicago. At the anniversary celebration, Professor Erikson delivered the Edith G. Neisser Memorial Lecture on "War and Ethnic Boundaries: the Destruction of Community in the Former Yugoslavia," based on his research into the way ethnic hostilities emerge. Professor Erikson has been studying the effects of disasters on human communities for the past 20 years. His father also taught at Yale from 1936 to 1939.
The School of Music Opera Program will present Giuseppe Verdi's "La Traviata" as its major production of the year Feb. 28- March 2 at the Shubert Theater in New Haven. Sung in Italian with supertitles, the performance will be fully staged and costumed and accompanied by the Philharmonia Orchestra of Yale. The Yale Opera Program's 16 students pursue an intensive two-year program within the School of Music, working closely with opera coaches and voice teachers. In addition to appearing in Yale productions, the singers perform with local companies. In fact, this month Yale Opera will provide the cast for the Waterbury Symphony's production of "Hansel and Gretel." The Yale singers will also present Gioacchino Rossini's "La Cenerentola" on April 25 and 26 in Sprague Memorial Hall. Ticket information for the Yale operas will follow at a later date.