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Ashis Nandy's interests have embraced scientific creativity, future studies, post-developmental and post-secular visions, cities of the mind, myths of nation-states, and alternatives. He joins UC Santa Barbara's Mark Juergensmeyer in conversation. Recorded on 04/25/2013.

This reading is a special event celebrating the first anthology of Burmese poetry in English translation in more than fifty years. At a time of political transformation in Myanmar, Zeyar Lynn, poet, essayist, and translator presents his work from "Bones Will Crow: 15 Contemporary Burmese Poets." Lynn is widely regarded as the most influential living poet in Myanmar and a translator of many Western poets, including Sylvia Plath, John Ashbery, and Charles Bernstein.

Benjamin Franklin and the American dream are often associated with the uninhibited pursuit of money. Nothing could be further from the truth, argues UC San Diego political scientist Alan Houston. To Franklin, the good life - a life of improvement - was spent pursuing knowledge, cultivating friendship, advancing freedom, and addressing human needs. Houston's presentation is the first of a seven-part lecture series exploring the meaning of the good life, sponsored by The Making of the Modern World program at UC San Diego.

Conversations host Harry Kreisler welcomes Harvard's Steven Pinker, Johnstone Family Professor of Psychology, for a discussion of his intellectual journey. Pinker discusses the origins and evolution of his thinking on human nature. Topics include: growing up in Montreal in a Jewish family, the impact of the 1960's, his education, and the trajectory of his research interests. He explains his early work in linguistics and how he came to write his recent work, The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined. In the conversation, Pinker describes the importance of interdisciplinary research and analyzes creativity. He concludes with a discussion of how science can contribute to the humanities and offers advice to students on how to prepare for the future. Recorded on 02/04/2014.

Marshall College and UC San Diego honored James Avery's life, career and legacy through an afternoon of theatre, live music, personal reflections and poetry readings. Key participants included Cecil Lytle, Arthur Wagner, Monique Gaffney, and members of the African-American theatre and entertainment communities.

In the last few decades, new sources of evidence have continued to indicate that male violence has played an important role in shaping behavior in the human lineage. The frequency and nature of such violence varies widely among populations and over time raises questions about the factors responsible for the variation. This symposium takes a fresh look at the causes and consequences of variation in aggression, both between and within species. Carol Ember (Yale Univ) begins with a discussion about Resource Unpredictability, Socialization, and War, followed by Polly Wiessner on Violence: What's Culture Got to Do with It?, and Robert Kelly (Univ of Wyoming) who asks Do Hunter-Gatherers Tell Us About Human Nature? Recorded on 05/16/2014.

Director Ivan Reitman and producers Tom Pollock and Joe Medjuck discuss their new film "Draft Day" starring Kevin Costner and Jennifer Garner. On the day of the NFL Draft, general manager Sonny Weaver (Kevin Costner) has the opportunity to save football in Cleveland when he trades for the number one pick. He must quickly decide what he's willing to sacrifice in pursuit of perfection as the lines between his personal and professional life become blurred on a life-changing day for a few hundred young men with dreams of playing in the NFL.

How are obscenity and indecency officially defined and what does it mean the current digital age? How are policies different for adult films and why is the first amendment applied differently? Panelists: Peter Alilunas, University of Michigan; Cynthia Chris, College of Staten Island, CUNY; Jeffrey J. Douglas, Board Chairman, Free Speech Coalition; Diane Duke, Executive Director, Free Speech Coalition Mark Kernes, Adult Video News; Daniel Linz, University of California, Santa Barbara. Moderated by Constance Penley, UC Santa Barbara.
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