Star Power

How Celestial Observations Have Shaped Civilization

Since the dawn of humans, the heavens have influenced cultures around the world. This Friday, Dr. Bryan Penprase, an astronomy professor and director of the Brackett Observatory at Pomona College, will give an illustrated talk on how celestial observations have shaped both ancient and modern civilizations. Aided by constellation maps, aerial views of celestial structures, and various cultures’ images of the universe, Penprase will explore the stars’ effect on societies, from spirituality to calendars. He will also discuss his new book The Power of Stars, and reveal details about Chumash solstice-watching sites. It takes place Friday, November 11, at 7 p.m. at Farrand Hall, S.B. Museum of Natural History (2559 Puesta del Sol Rd.). Cost is $10. For more information, call (805) 682-4711 x170, or visit

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