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Event listings for Monday, April 9

Ideas and education

PUTNEY "Different Does Not Equal Disordered: The Case for Embracing Neurodiversity": Author John Elder Robison addresses the increasing body of evidence suggesting that a degree of autism, ADHD, dyslexia, and other neurological difference is part of the normal range of human variation. Differences may be disabling but they also confer degrees of exceptionality, which may be why they persist in the human genome. People who are neurologically different are called neurodivergent, while their more typical peers are neurotypical. Much like some individuals are very tall or very short, some neurodivergent folks are brilliant at math while others excel in English. Such people are complete, correct humans in their own right rather than broken versions of someone's idea of "normal." Robison's talk addresses the socio-historical factors that led to neurodivergent people being classified as disordered and why that might/might not be accurate. He'll also make the case that these individuals have played a key role in the advance of civilization and how adopting a mindset that embraces neurodiversity benefits all of humanity. He'll share some of his own experiences as a proud, neurodiverse individual. He's a New York Times bestselling author, entrepreneur, and advocate for autistic people and the author of books on autism spectrum disorder such as "Switched On: A Memoir of Brain Change and Emotional Awakening" and "Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger's." He credits his own neurodivergence for his success as an engineer, first with rock bands like KISS, and then later with a major toy and game company. Today he operates an automobile restoration company in MA specializing in luxury vehicles. He also serves on the federal committee that coordinates how various governmental agencies address autism and was recently named a visiting lecturer at Landmark College and an advisor to the College's new Center for Neurodiversity. Book-signing follows. 7 p.m. Free. Landmark College Greenhoe Theater, 1 River Rd. S. RSVP to reserve a spot: marketing@landmark.edu; www.landmark.edu.

Local history

BELLOWS FALLS 1964: A Watershed Year in Vermont's Political (and Cultural) History: In 1964, the Republican Party lost its tight-fisted grasp on Vermont politics, starting the swing of the political pendulum from Vermont as bastion of conservative republicanism to a state with a highly diversified political climate featuring progressive and even radical politics. Novelist Deborah Luskin, whose extensive research into the politics of mid-century Vermont was undertaken in the writing of "Into the Wilderness," a love story that takes place against the two major political events of that year, shows how the shift is more complex and more nuanced than mere politics. Sponsored by the Rockingham Historic Preservation Commission through a grant from the Vermont Humanities Council. 6 p.m. Free. Rockingham Free Public Library, 65 Westminster St. Information: 802-463-4270; Click for more info on Web in new window.

Well-being

GUILFORD Tai Chi for Fall Prevention: These classes will introduce and practice the most basic movements of introductory forms taught by Dr. Paul Lam and recommended by the Arthritis Foundation. The pace is smooth, slow, and can be done while seated. Instructor: Leah Gessner, Certified by Tai Chi Vermont, Inc. in Fall Prevention Tai Chi. Sponsored by Guilford Cares. Intermediate: 10 a.m. - 11 a.m.; Beginners: 11 a.m. - noon on Mondays. $2 suggested donation. Guilford Community Church, Crnr Rte. 5 and Guilford Center Rd. Information: 802-579-1350, gcares@comcast.net.

BRATTLEBORO Resilience: Your Immunity to Stress: Resilience is to stress what the immune system is to illness--it won't prevent you from experiencing it, but it can lessen the impact and frequency. Why do some people seem to be more resilient, better able to "bounce back" after a difficulty? Boosting resilience is a classic "simple but not easy" process, and is 100% possible. The stronger our resilience, the better we're able to let go of everyday annoyances. Learn to discern what we can control and put our energy into healthy changes. If you feel stressed out by work and/or life in general this workshop can help you. Take away practical tools to use immediately in any area of your life. With Jen Jacobs from THRIVE.eap. 12 noon - 1 p.m. Free. Brown Bag Lunch Series, River Garden, 157 Main St. Information: 802-246-0982; Click for more info on Web in new window.

Community building

PUTNEY Southern VT Creative Meeting: Nexus of Art & Economy: Convening innovators and leaders who demonstrate how the arts significantly contribute to the healthy economy and vibrancy of our communities in Bennington and Windham Counties. This event is for town managers and planners, creatives, legislators, economic development folks, and arts and community leaders. Highlighted topics include creative economy data and a panel that will illustrate how creative projects from around the state are addressing housing, accessibility, job creation, education and attracting young professionals and families to the state. We will hear from the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development and the Think Vermont initiative along with representatives from the Vermont Creative Network, Local 64, Next Stage Arts, The Putnam Block Project, the Vermont Arts Council, the New England Foundation for the Arts, and the Southern Vermont Economy Project. Organized by Rockingham Arts & Museum Project and Vermont Performance Lab. 9:30 a.m: coffee/networking, 10 a.m. - 12 noon: presenters. Free and open to the public. Next Stage Arts Project, 15 Kimball Hill. Register: www.eventbrite.com, 802-463-3252.

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