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17 June 2021

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The gothic and the sentimental in recent American history

Book critic Christian Lorentzen discusses his recent essay using literary analysis to understand the Trump and Biden eras. Play entire video

We come in peace

In a conversation with Mickey Kaus, Robert Wright argues that humans are in trouble if aliens don’t show up sooner or later.

In praise of Black humanity

Glenn Loury, Cornel West, and Teodros Kiros discuss the global cultural impact of Black Americans and the problems of internalized despair that they still confront.

What is it about Kamala?

Bill Scher and Matt K. Lewis discuss why Vice President Kamala Harris seems to attract an outsized amount of attention and criticism.

Dissecting Darwin

Robert Wright and anthropologist Agustín Fuentes, author of a controversial article on The Descent of Man, try to unpack Darwin’s attitudes on race and genocide.

Play this clip on MeaningofLife.tv

Tea Party 2.0?

In a conversation with Robert Wright, Mickey Kaus makes the case for an anti-woke Tea Party.

China’s war on terror

In a conversation with Robert Wright, historian David Brophy explains how China justifies its repression of the Uyghurs as part of the international fight against terrorism.

Trump’s rigged election

Robert Wright argues that Trump is partly responsible for the absence of moderate candidates in Iran’s upcoming presidential election (and that Biden may be, too).

Our COVID debt

Glenn Loury talks to economist Laurence Kotlikoff about the dangers of inflation caused by debt-financed COVID relief.

The Wright Show

The crackdown in Russia

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Robert Wright and Nikita Petrov discuss how Alexey Navalny’s return to Russia and the Belarusian political crisis led to Russia’s most recent crackdown on political freedoms.

Culturally Determined

The failures of Hebrew School education

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Aryeh Cohen-Wade speaks with Rabbi Ari Hart about Jewish religious instruction in America.

MeaningofLife.tv

Is “information” the key to quantum mechanics?

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John Horgan and science writer Philip Ball discuss the roles of consciousness and calculation in quantum mechanics.

Play this clip on MeaningofLife.tv

The DMZ

Why is Trump so bad at blogging?

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Matt Lewis and Bill Scher explore the meaning behind Trump’s blog bust.

Culturally Determined

“The Language of Privilege”

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Nicholas Clairmont discusses his recent essay applying class analysis to “woke” language.

MeaningofLife.tv

Hitting the existential brick wall

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Over a slideshow of his work, the artist David Poleski describes a devastating “negative mystical experience” he had in 1974.

Play this clip on MeaningofLife.tv