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A presentation given by a distinguished individual on a topic of interest to the field of general semantics

The Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture Series

AKML Speakers

Since 1952, the Institute of General Semantics has sponsored the annual Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture (AKML), a presentation given by a distinguished individual on a topic of interest to the field of general semantics.  View Archive | Upcoming Lecture Series


In 1952, two years after founder Alfred Korzbyski’s sudden death, Institute of General Semantics Director M. Kendig initiated an annual program to remember Korzybski and celebrate the continuation of his goals for human development and progress.

This program became known as the Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture Series, or “AKML.” Kendig viewed this series as a means not only to remember Korzybski, but also to celebrate the contributions of those whose work is scientifically oriented and promotes what Korzybski termed “time-binding,” the unique human ability to build on the achievements of others through the use of symbols and languages.


An impressive lineup of speakers has added significant prestige to the AKML, which over the years has featured prominent authors, scientists, psychologists, educators, and individuals from varied backgrounds.

A few of the more recognizable names include Abraham Maslow, Buckminster Fuller, Albert Ellis, Steve Allen, Leonard Shlain, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Lou Marinoff, Ellen Langer, J. Allan Hobson, Robert Carneiro, James Van Allen, Karl H. Pribram, Deborah Tannen, Sherry Turkle, and others.

Upcoming events

    • 7 Oct 2022
    • 9 Oct 2022
    • The Players Club, 16 Gramercy Park S, New York, NY 10003

    AKML & Symposium Schedule Now Available

    Registration is for In-Person Attendance ONLY

    All IGS Members in Good Standing Will Receive Instructions on How to Livestream the Event Online Prior to the AKML

    The 70th Annual 

    Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture

    October 7th, 2022

    Co-Sponsored by the New York Society for General Semantics

    the International Bateson Institute

    the Media Ecology Association

    and the 404 Festival of Art and Technology


    Janna Levin

    Janna Levin is the Claire Tow Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Barnard College of Columbia University. She is also the Founding Director of Sciences at Pioneer Works, a cultural center in Brooklyn, and the editor-in-chief of the virtual magazine, Pioneer Works Broadcast, which publishes across disciplines from art to science. She has contributed to an understanding of black holes, the early universe, chaos, and the shape of the universe. Her books include How the Universe Got Its SpotsBlack Hole Blues, and a novel, A Madman Dreams of Turing Machines, which won several prominent prizes for fiction. Her latest book is Black Hole Survival Guide.

    Black Hole Survival Guide

    In April this year, there was a monumental scientific  announcement of the first picture of our black hole at the center of the Milky Way. We orbit that black hole as surely as we orbit the sun. It's 4 million times the mass of the sun yet less than 20 times the width. At 26,000 light-years away, the black hole is as big in our sky as a piece of fruit on the moon and it took a telescope the size of the Earth to image it. This has been a century of black hole discoveries, including two Nobel prizes for black-hole science in the past few years. This is deserving of a third, with one billion people around the globe tuning in to look together at the first human-procured image of a black hole. Janna Levin, astrophysicist and author, will give a visually-guided tour of black holes and the role they play in our past and our future.

    The AKML will be followed by our

    Ecologies of






    October 8th-9th, 2022

    Send inquiries regarding participation to president@generalsemantics.org

    The lecture, dinner, and symposium are being held at the historic Players Club in Gramercy Park, Manhattan. 

    Registration is free for IGS members and their guests, but all attendees must be registered in advance in order to gain admittance to the club. More information regarding the dinner and symposium schedule will be made available at a later date.

    Please note that as an historic 18th century landmark, the site is not handicap accessible. Dress code is business casual and is strictly enforced, including no sneakers, shorts, ripped jeans, t-shirts).

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