Things a Dynamicist Rarely Talks About in Public


Things a Dynamicist Rarely Talks About in Public

In partnership with ALBA–University of Balamand

Thursday 7 July, 18:00 to 19:30

In English
Free admission

By the time this talk is delivered, I should have figured out some of the reasons why Jalal Toufic asked a specialist in astrophysical dynamics to address the eclectic public of the Sursock Museum. At present, I can hesitate a guess as to why – a guess which may end up informing the ultimate presentation: Jalal wishes to project, from the perspective of a local practitioner of the art, some of the implications of our current working notions of space-time for art and for modes of existence.

Part of a series of talks organized by Jalal Toufic, Director of ALBA’s School of Visual Arts, in partnership with ALBA–University of Balamand.

Jihad Rachid Touma, Professor of Physics, American University of Beirut. Delivered in Qabb Ilyas of the Bekaa, then straight to the caring hands of the then exquisitely sadistic nuns of the hill. Forcibly displaced to Zahle to be summarily overcome by equally caring frocked ladies and a hefty dose of Jules Verne. Resettled in coastal suburbia where dress code was out, and spoken lubnani forbidden. Shipped to Texas for lack of better options. Turned rocket scientist in Austin, while forbidden to get close to one. Happily tunneled to applied mathematics at MIT, and through it to astrophysics at the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics. Been disturbing the universe since: chaotic rotation of Mars, large scale volcanism on Venus, exoplanetary chaos, instabilities of stellar black hole nuclei. Currently, most excited about a Beiruti data analytics startup (, a fine-grained observatory of socio-political chaos, harvesting material to revisit the “statistics of deadly quarrels."