Things to Do

Culture Vulture

A compilation of interesting—and, most important, free—lectures, cultural events, and more throughout the week.

The Washington Post’s Barton Gellman brings his book, Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency, to Politics and Prose on Monday at 7. The Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter recounts the vice president’s unprecedented quest for power and reveals how Cheney misled Congress with faulty information on weapons of mass destruction and thwarted efforts to promote Israeli/Palestinian peace.

On Tuesday, Politics and Prose hosts a screening and discussion of the second presidential debate starting at 8.

Also on Tuesday, the National Portrait Gallery presents a conversation with poet and educator Nikki Giovanni as part of the Cultures in Motion performance series. Starting at 7, playwright Jennifer L. Nelson will interview Giovanni about her life, her work as a poet, her thoughts on hip-hop culture, and her recently published books, Hip Hop Speaks to Children and Lincoln and Douglass. A book signing follows the interview. For reservations for this free event, call 202-633-8520. 

Need a lunch break? Stop by Barnes and Noble’s downtown-DC location at 12:30 on Wednesday for a discussion of Antonia Juhasz’s Tyranny of Oil. Juhasz argues that a growing populist movement will force Congress to break up the current Big Oil construction.

The National Portrait Gallery is screening The Maltese Falcon on Wednesday at 7 in the McEvoy Auditorium. John Huston’s 1941 film stars Humphrey Bogart as detective Sam Spade in this noir classic. Historian David Ward will introduce the film.

Colonel Clarence E. “Bud” Anderson, formerly of the US Air Force, stops by the National Air and Space Museum on Thursday for the annual General Electric aviation lecture. The legendary World War II pilot will discuss his 30-year career with the Air Force in the Lockheed Martin IMAX Theater at 8. A book signing of To Fly and to Fight follows.

Need insight on the economic crisis? Institute for Policy Studies director John Cavanagh and American University professor Robin Broad will be at DC’s Busboys and Poets at 6 on Friday to discuss their newest book, Development Redefined: How the Market Met Its Match. The authors chronicle the rise and fall of the Washington Consensus and lay out alternatives to corporate-led globalization.

How about a fairy-tale escape? The National Gallery of Art screens I Was a Swiss Banker on Saturday at 4 in the East Building’s auditorium. The film follows a young Swiss banker who abruptly dives into Lake Constance with a bagful of money. Director Thomas Imbach also fits singing mermaids and other enchanted creatures into this 75-minute adventure.

Singer/songwriter Mike Mulvaney brings his bluesy folk to Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe at 10 on Saturday.

Sharon Clark, a virtuoso jazz singer and winner of the Billie Holiday Vocal Competition, performs a selection of jazz classics with her quintet at 3 on Sunday in the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s McEvoy Auditorium.