Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences

The role of UN ambassador, explained

Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, distinguished global leader-in-residence at Perry World House, describes the workings of the U.S. ambassador to the U.N.—and whether it matters that it’s no longer of cabinet status.

Brandon Baker

Indigenous ethnologist

Gladys Tantaquidgeon, the first Native American student in Penn’s anthropology department, published a series of academic articles, authored a book on ethnobotany and accompanied the department chair as his assistant, interviewing tribes and collecting folklore.

Penn Today Staff

College admissions in crisis

Admissions Dean Eric Furda on the Varsity Blues scandal, civil litigation, and rising disgruntlement over the way elite universities select their students.

Penn Today Staff



In the News


NPR

“Can we change social norms?”

Cristina Bicchieri of the School of Arts and Sciences joins a philosophical discussion about the possibility of changing social norms.

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Vox.com

Everyone wants to Instagram the world’s most beautiful canyon. Should they?

Anjan Chatterjee of the Perelman School of Medicine spoke about the tourist appeal of photogenic sites like Antelope Canyon. “There is a beauty to the space, but it is also overwhelming in the sense that you feel small and insignificant, and almost associated with some anxiety. There’s something about being forced to look upward that seems to convey both elevation and a sense of your own smallness.”

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Philadelphia Inquirer

Disney cast the Little Mermaid as a black woman. Why that unnerved some is the same reason others rejoiced

Ebony Elizabeth Thomas of the Graduate School of Education discussed the casting of a black woman as Ariel in the upcoming “Little Mermaid” remake. “Whether it’s seeing people of color traveling faster than the speed of light, or as superheroes, dragons, or even mermaids, when we see ourselves in these roles, even as kids we believe we can do anything,” she said. “These images shape our minds on a subconscious level.”

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WBUR Radio (Boston)

Employers want to do more with less. Where does that leave expertise?

Angela Duckworth of the School of Arts and Sciences spoke about grit and other non-IQ competencies achieved through hard work over sustained periods of time.

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WHYY (Philadelphia)

Not over the hill: ‘Design With Nature,’ Ian McHarg’s landmark book of ecological design turns 50

Bill Whitaker of the Stuart Weitzman School of Design spoke about Penn landscape architect Ian McHarg’s influence on ecological design and city planning. “He realized that people paid attention when you had scientific information and you had hard facts,” said Whitaker.

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