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SJC Study Group

Sunday, April 22, 2018 • 7 Iyyar 5778

3:00 PM - 4:00 PMSummit Hill

This month we shall be reading about a remarkable woman: Hedy Lamarr. The main book is Hedy’s Folly: The Life and Breakthrough Inventions of Hedy Lamarr, the Most Beautiful Woman in the World, by Richard Rhodes.

From Library Journal:
“Here's a recipe that might surprise you: Take a silver-screen sex goddess (Hedy Lamarr), an avant-garde composer (George Antheil), a Hollywood friendship, and mutual technological curiosity, and mix well. What results is a patent for spread-spectrum radio, which has impacted the development of everything from torpedoes to cell phones and GPS technologies. This surprising and long-forgotten story is brought to life by Pulitzer Prize winner Rhodes (The Making of the Atomic Bomb), who deftly moves between Nazi secrets, scandalous films, engineering breakthroughs, and musical flops to weave a taut story that straddles two very different worlds--the entertainment industry and wartime weaponry--and yet somehow manages to remain a delectable read. Verdict: Hedy Lamarr is experiencing something of a renaissance, and Rhodes's book adds another layer to the life of a beautiful woman who was so much more than the sum of her parts.”

There are other books about Lamarr as well, e.g., Hedy Lamarr: The Most Beautiful Woman in Film, by Ruth Barton; and Beautiful: The Life of Hedy Lamarr, by Stephen Michael Shearer. But I think Rhodes' book will probably be the most appropriate.

Any questions, let me know at nealstarkman@msn.com.

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Fri, 20 July 2018