Patty Limerick Interviews J. Robert Oppenheimer

Event Date: Jul 16, 2008
Event Time: 7:00 p.m.
Location: Ricketson Auditorium, Denver Museum of Nature & Science

Patty Limerick, Ph.D., award-winning historian and Chair of the Board at the Center of the American West, University of Colorado, interviewed J. Robert Oppenheimer as portrayed by Clay S. Jenkinson, award-winning humanities scholar and author.

The first atomic device was detonated more than 60 years ago, but the aftershocks can still be felt today. During this special evening, “J. Robert Oppenheimer” recalled those days during a thoughtful, engaging dialogue with Limerick. Oppenheimer’s reactions to the atomic test captured the complexity of an individual man and the challenging relationship between science, discovery, and ethics. As a scientist, he was satisfied with the experiment’s successful result. But his reaction was also deeper, more interesting, and morally informed as the Hindu words “I am become death, the shatterer of worlds” burst into his consciousness. Together, Oppenheimer and Limerick explored the ethics and science, indeed the price of progress.

Co-sponsored by Colorado Humanities.