Saturday, October 27, 2018 9:30 am - 1:15 pm
Leonard Steinhorn / American University
We may not wear bell bottoms and tie-dye t-shirts anymore, and let's not talk about what happened to our hair. But even though it's been half a century since the 1960s, it’s a decade that continues to reverberate in our society, politics, culture, and institutions to this very day. In so many ways it was the Sixties that spawned today's polarization and culture wars, which divide us now the way Vietnam did back then. From civil rights to feminism to gay liberation to the environmental movement to the silent majority, what started in the Sixties has shaped and influenced our country ever since.
To many, the presidency of Barack Obama symbolized the liberation movements of the Sixties. But it's also important to ask how the Sixties produced the presidency of Donald Trump. It's the Sixties, its meaning and its legacy that may well be the dividing line in our politics today.
Leonard Steinhorn is a professor of communication and affiliate professor of history at American University. He currently serves as a political analyst for CBS News in Washington, D.C. He is the author of “The Greater Generation: In Defense of the Baby Boom Legacy,” and co-author of “By the Color of Our Skin: The Illusion of Integration and the Reality of Race,” books that have generated widespread discussion and debate. Professor Steinhorn’s writings have been featured in several publications, including The Washington Post, Salon, Politico, and Huffington Post. He has twice been named Faculty Member of the Year at AU.
Arielle Saiber / Bowdoin College
For approximately two centuries (late 1300s to early 1600s), Italy experienced what we now call the Renaissance—renowned for its exquisite art and architecture, its innovators such as Leonardo, Machiavelli, and Galileo, and its intricate system of power and patronage. It was a time in which increasing social mobility, as well as enthusiasm for classical thought, led to extensive reflections on identity and self-fashioning. Questions that we are still asking today regarding success, happiness, and one's role in society were being rapidly articulated and—thanks to the printing press—disseminated via philosophical treatises, literature, and advice manuals, serious and satirical.
This lecture explores some of the most popular categories of Renaissance wit and wisdom, including strategies for navigating the world of love, improving one's memory, keeping up with appearance, finding equanimity, and living a long and healthy life. We will see how little, and how much, has changed over the centuries. In looking at the values the Italian Renaissance held most dear, we have a chance to reflect upon our own values, and what we, today, seek in the name of personal and global well-being.
Arielle Saiber is a Professor of romance languages and literature at Bowdoin College. Her latest book is “Measured Words: Computation and Writing in Renaissance Italy”. She has won numerous fellowships for her research, such as the NEH, Harvard’s Villa I Tatti, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, as well as awards for her writing, including Yale’s Field Prize, the Modern Language Association’s Scaglione Award, and the Newberry Library’s Weiss-Brown Award. In 2004, she received Bowdoin’s only teaching award, the Karofsky Prize. She will be the Speroni Chair for Medieval and Renaissance Literature and Culture at UCLA for fall 2018.
Jacob Appel / Brown University
The same medical technologies that have brought us miracle drugs and unprecedented longevity are also forcing us to confront increasingly difficult ethical dilemmas. Should taxpayers spend several million dollars to prolong one patient’s life for one month? Can genes be patented? How ought judges respond when doctors and family members disagree on the very definition of death? May a seventeen-year-old boy refuse to give a life-saving bone marrow transplant to his fifteen-year-old cousin? Thirty years ago, debates in medical ethics focused on the same questions that had once puzzled Hippocrates and Galen many centuries earlier. When does life begin? When may confidentiality be broken? Must a physician help a stranger in need?
Today, most challenges in bioethics arise from two relatively novel sets of issues: 1.) conflicts over scarce healthcare resources and 2.) the desire of philosophical and religious minorities to be opt out of established medical norms. How society ultimately resolves these questions is not simply an abstract matter for debate by philosophers and ethicists. Rather, the outcome of these controversies is likely to affect each and every one of us when we or our loved ones become ill. This lecture will examine some paradigmatic recent cases in the field of bioethics and will offer students a framework for analyzing future cases on their own.
Learn more about our history by checking out other great videos at OneDayU, including ‘What Happened To The News, ‘Music & Theater: Past, Present & Future’ & ‘Making Better Choices: The Art & Science Of Rational Decision Making’ all on-demand now.
Jacob Appel is an American author, bioethicist, physician, lawyer and social critic. He is best known for his short stories, his work as a playwright, and his writing in the fields of reproductive ethics, organ donation, neuroethics and euthanasia. Appel’s novel, The Man Who Wouldn’t Stand Up, won the Dundee International Book Prize in 2012. He has taught medical ethics at New York University, Columbia University, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, and Brown University’s Alpert Medical School.