Mapping class group actions on Sl_2 representation varieties
The mapping class group's most famous action, on Teichmueller space, can be usefully rephrased in terms of Sl(2,R) representations (i.e. flat connections). One can similarly define actions on spaces of Sl(2,C) representations. This innocent change of field creates a new set of questions, a few of which have been answered. The goal will be to give an introduction to this subject in two talks. The first talk will be specifically aimed at a graduate student audience.