Arts, Humanities, & Social Sciences

Five things to know about the British election

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party won a decisive victory in last week’s general election. Political scientist Brendan O’Leary, an expert on U.K. politics, tells Penn Today his five main takeaways from the election results.

Kristen de Groot

How rituals shape our world

An Annenberg class about ritual communication encourages students to employ ethnography and textual analysis to think about the unique language of rituals and their endurance.

Penn Today Staff

New leadership at Fels Institute

The 82-year-old Fels Institute of Government’s signature Public Policy in Practice workshops continues the legacy of providing students with a practical program in public administration.

Kristen de Groot



In the News


Architectural Record

Why removing the melted scaffolding from Notre Dame is the key to its preservation

Frank Matero of the Stuart Weitzman School of Design said removing the Cathedral of Notre Dame’s melted scaffolding is key to protecting the cathedral’s masonry vaults. “Vault collapse would destabilize the entire structure and significantly compromise its overall integrity in every way,” he said.

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Inside Higher Ed

An intelligent argument on race?

Quayshawn Spencer of the School of Arts and Sciences said it’s a “fatal flaw” for an article on the role of heredity in determining character traits to not address how race effects both the researchers and their subjects.

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The New York Times

Why Trump persists

Diana Mutz of the Annenberg School for Communication and School of Arts and Sciences spoke about the effects of education on individual world views. “Every study I’ve ever seen across the social sciences shows that education promotes less in-group favoritism and greater tolerance toward those unlike ourselves,” she said. “In panel studies that track the same people over time, as people gain advanced levels of education, they become more tolerant and favorable toward liberal democratic norms.”

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The Wall Street Journal

Can a woman win in 2020?

Sarah Shaiman, a student in the College of Arts and Sciences, wrote an opinion piece encouraging voters to look beyond identity politics when selecting a presidential candidate. “Electing a woman to be president means nothing if she doesn’t commit to materially improving the lives of the nation’s women, including working-class women,” she wrote.

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Philadelphia Inquirer

With 2020 election, Women’s March on Philadelphia ‘more important now than ever,’ organizers say

Dawn Teele of the School of Arts and Sciences spoke about the Women’s March, calling it “a cathartic show of solidarity rather than a solid movement with a specific end.”

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