Fairchild's Lecture Series

Fairchild's Lecture Series

When: Wednesday, February 18, 2015 7:00 PM to Wednesday, February 18, 2015 8:00 PM

Gates Open at 6:00 p.m.

Wade Davis, Author
The Serpent and the Rainbow: An Exploration of Haitian Voodoo, Secret Societies and Zombies

According to popular Haitian belief, zombies are the living dead, individuals raised in a trance from their graves by malevolent sorcerers and led away to face a life of terror and uncertainty. In early 1982 a team of prominent physicians and psychiatrists approached the Harvard Botanical Museum with an astonishing report of the discovery of the first medically documented case of zombification. Professor Richard Evans Schultes, then Director of the Museum, assigned Mr. Davis the task of traveling to Haiti to search for the formula of the folk preparation reputedly employed by Vodoun sorcerers to induce a state of apparent death so profound that victims could actually be misdiagnosed as dead. This lecture recounts the discovery of that toxin- a powder containing an extremely potent nerve poison 160,000 times stronger than cocaine which drastically reduces metabolism and brings on total peripheral paralysis, even though consciousness is retained. This study became the basis of his dissertation research at Harvard and led to his writing two books Passage of Darkness and The Serpent and the Rainbow, an international bestseller that appeared in twelve languages and was later made into a feature film by Universal Studios.

Join us for on select evenings from December to May for a formative lecture series on art, conservation and travel from Fairchild experts and renowned authors. All lectures are held in the Lakeside Marquee. Light refreshments will be served. View the complete list of lectures here.

Fairchild's Lecture Series tickets are included with Garden admission. $25 for non members and free for Fairchild Members. Tickets for non members can be purchased the day of the lecture or pre-purchased below.  
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