A homeless man sits next to a sleek glass office building. A concrete wall becomes a barrier. Find Myself a City: Videotapes on the Urban Landscape, a series of six short videotapes, explores contrasts in the cityscape and the emotions of urban dwellers. Curated by the Video Data Bank of the School of the Art Institute, the free screenings begin at 7 PM at Gallery 2, 1040 W. Huron. Call 899-5172.
The Committee to End the Marion Lockdown is sponsoring tonight’s hour-long slide show The Stanford University Prison Experiment, about a controversial experiment on prison roles in which students constructed cells and assumed the roles of inmates and guards. They took their roles so seriously that the study had to be stopped after one week. Stanford psychologist Phillip Zimbardo, who led the study, concluded that prisons are in and of themselves dehumanizing and offer little hope for rehabilitation. A panel discussion with ex-prisoners “Black Al” Sanders, Felix Rosa, and Betty Lewis will follow the slide show. The program starts at 7:30 PM at the Resurrection Lutheran Church, 3303 N. Seminary. There’s a suggested donation of $4. Child care is available. Call 663-5046.
Michelle Shocked, who’s straight as an arrow, got some nervous laughs from the audience at a New York award show last year when she accepted her trophy for Best New Female Vocalist. “This should have been called the best new lesbian category,” she joked good-naturedly. None of the nominees were actually out of the closet, but a couple of them got their starts in the women’s-music circuit. Does that mean they’re gay’? Or does it just mean they’re feminists? Or does it mean anything at all anymore? Toni Armstrong Jr., founder of Hot Wire magazine, the bible of women’s music, will answer questions on Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Women’s Music, But Weren’t Sure Who to Ask, starting at 7:30 PM at Kinheart, 2214 Ridge in Evanston. Admission is $5, $3 for members. It’s open to women only. Call 708-491-1103.
When the Spanish explorers first saw orchids, they thought they must be sacred. You can see some of these exotic flowers at the 32nd annual orchid show and sale. Sponsored by the Illinois Orchid Society, the show runs from 9 to 4 today and tomorrow at the Chicago Botanic Garden, on Lake Cook Road in Glencoe, one-half mile east of the Edens Expressway. Admission is free, but parking costs $3. There will be a continuous program of videos and slides both days. Call 708-835-5440.
Republicans might actually have something to cheer about after the primary. If R. Eugene Pincham or Ted Lechowicz is the Democratic nominee for president of the Cook County Board of Commissioners, and if Cecil Partee wins for state’s attorney, the Republicans think Aldo DeAngelis and Jack O’Malley will have a real chance in the fall. The 43rd Ward Regular Republican organization will hold a rally at 10 AM today for their endorsed candidates, including U.S. Senate challenger Lynn Martin, at Aetna Plaza, on the corner of Halsted at Fullerton and Lincoln. Theyll all head downtown afterward for the Saint Patrick’s Day parade. It’s free. Call 477-6443.
Got a dental dam in your purse? If you’re a sexually active single woman, you might want to have one handy. You can find out what one is and how it works at today’s free seminar on safe and unsafe a sex practices for single women and their partners. Dr. James Arrington, who runs a private practice in obstetrics and gynecology, will host the one-hour presentation, which starts at 10 AM. A half-hour question-and-answer session will follow. It’s at 2025 N. Lincoln, suite 301. Call 528-5378 to make a reservation.
The tradition of Saint Joseph’s Table began in Sicily in the 19th century, when wives of local fishermen promised Saint Joseph to provide food for the poor on his feast day if their husbands returned safely from the sea. Because Saint Joseph’s day fell during Lent, most of the foods served were meatless. In Chicago the tradition has been celebrated since 1960 by the Notre Dame parish, which will offer the free feast from 4 to 7 today at their church, 1336 W. Flournoy. Donations for the table are welcome. For more information call 243-7400.
If you need an excuse, the Aztecs believed that eating cacao, from which chocolate is made, gave a person wisdom and knowledge. The Chocolatier Dessert School’s chief pastry chef Michel Tournier will offer contemporary chocolate dessert classes at the Chef’s Catalog store in the Crossroads Shopping Center, 151A Skokie Valley Road in Highland Park. You can take the class from 11:30 to 2 or from 6:30 to 9. Each session costs $40. Call 800-876-1168 to enroll.
Joan Allen, Rob Riley, Alan Wilder, Aaron Freeman, Tim Kazurinsky, members of Friends of the Zoo, and Wilderness Road are getting together tonight to lend a hand to Michael Moore, a stage actor and technician who is battling cancer. His friends from the theater community are putting on a show to help him pay off his mounting medical bills. The benefit starts at 7 at Second City, 1616 N. Wells. Tickets are $20 to $35 and can be picked up at the Second City box office, and at the Steppenwolf, Organic, Prop, and Live Bait theaters. Call 477-4296 or 664-4032.
Former Weather Underground member Bernardine Dohrn and top Daley adviser Julie Hamos make an unlikely duo for this morning’s executive forum, Shaping the Agenda: Taking Charge of the Future. Breakfast begins at 8, and the program follows from 8:30 to 10:30 in the sixth-floor assembly room at the Northern Trust, 50 S. LaSalle. It’s sponsored by Women in Charge; tickets are $20. Call 435-3900.
Award-winning writer Jurek Becker spent most of his early childhood in the Lodz ghetto and in concentration camps, which he explored in his novels Jakob der Lugner and Der Boxer. Becker, who now lives in West Berlin, has also written for film, television, and cabaret. He’ll give a talk at 6 PM at the Goethe-Institut, 401 N. Michigan. The program will be in German. Admission is free. Call 329-0915.
Women Speak for Themselves, the current show at the Beacon Street Gallery, addresses violence against women in works that include personal accounts and social commentary. The juried exhibition is the debut of the Alternative Arts Workshop, an educational group founded by artists Angela Kelly and Silvia Malagrino. The last day of the show is Friday; hours are noon to 6 at 4520 N. Beacon. It’s free. Call 561-3500.
The Community Law Project will provide free legal assistance to poor and low-income Chicagoans through the People’s Law School, a series of community education forums. Volunteer lawyers from the Cook County Bar Association will conduct tonight’s session, Bankruptcy: When to File and Debtor’s Rights and Other Remedies, which starts at 6 in room 116 of the Williams Science Center at Chicago State University, 95th and King Drive. There’s no need to preregister. For a full schedule of classes and a list of future topics call 630-9363.
Jan Garden Castro, author of books on writer Margaret Atwood and artist Georgia O’Keeffe, will be the featured speaker at today’s “Writers in Conversation” program at 12:15 at the Public Library Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington. It’s free. Call 269-2880.
Tonight’s “Great Performances in Great Spaces” concert by the Chicago Ensemble features a Poulenc sextet for winds; a piece by Howard Rovics for soprano, flute, and piano; arias by Bach; and a Mozart quintet. It’s at the van Straaten Gallery. Concertgoers can look over the current exhibit and sip wine from 5:45 to 6:15, when the music starts. The gallery’s at 230 W. Huron. Tickets are $18. Call 664-1219.
The Role of the Non-Jewish Spouse in the Synagogue, a conference for interfaith couples, will be held tonight at Temple Jeremiah, 937 Happ Road in Northfield. Dinner will be served at 6, after which small discussion groups will tackle issues such as temple membership, committee chairmanships, and ritual participation by the non-Jewish spouse. It’s $15 per person. Call 782-1477.