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MindPop

David Sehat

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MindPop
MindPop

MindPop

David Sehat

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About Us

A podcast about ideas, politics, and culture. Each episode, David Sehat and his guests break down the questions of the day with a bigger picture perspective. If you want engaging discussion with interesting thinkers, welcome to MindPop.About the host: David Sehat normally teaches history at Georgia State University but this year is the John G. Winant Visiting Professor of American Government at the University of Oxford. He is also the author of The Jefferson Rule (2015) and The Myth of American Religious Freedom (2011).

Latest Episodes

Food Safety, Food Politics

E. coli. Listeria. Salmonella. When you turn on the news, it's hard not to hear about some tragic outbreak caused by lettuce, or beef, or something unknown. Why do outbreaks occur with such regularity? Is a failure of big government? Or is it big business putting profits above its customers? Or is it a regulatory state that is underfunded and overtasked? Timothy Lytton, Distinguished University Professor at Georgia State University, gives us some answers.

47 MINJUN 23
Comments
Food Safety, Food Politics

HAL 9000

When we think about AI, many of us have in mind HAL 9000 from the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. But AI is here and it is not quite like the movies. So what does AI look like today? How it reshaping contemporary society and government? Whose interests does it serve and, for those pessimistic about its influence, is there anything that can be done to ameliorate its negative effects? Tim Hwang, the Director of the Ethics and Governance of AI Initiative at Harvard and MIT works through the possibilities.

43 MIN2018 MAR 18
Comments
HAL 9000

Solitude

What does it mean to be alone? Is aloneness, as Thoreau said, necessary to live deliberately? Or is it perhaps a curse of modern life made worse by mass media and cultural fragmentation? In this episode, American Studies scholar Ina Bergmann talks about the cultures of solitude in past and present.

36 MIN2017 DEC 17
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Solitude

Network Error

How should we understand public debate in the era of social media? Can the internet be salvaged for democracy promotion? Or is it a Trojan horse for a dystopian future? Phil Howard of the Oxford Internet Institute talks about social media and politics.

31 MIN2017 NOV 29
Comments
Network Error

Truth and Post-Truth

How do we maintain a sense of fact and reality in a post-truth age? Are there any objective and universally accepted arbiters of truth left? How can democratic government, or even democratic argument, work without a mutually accepted body of information? Oxford politics scholar Nadia Hilliard talks about truth and post-truth in American government.

34 MIN2017 NOV 15
Comments
Truth and Post-Truth

A Conservative Revolution

What was the impetus behind the American Revolution? Why were the revolutionaries who set up American institutions so concerned to protect property? What political implications does the founding moment have for today? Birmingham political historian Tom Cutterham talks about the conservative impulses in the American Revolution and what radical political change would actually mean.

29 MIN2017 NOV 5
Comments
A Conservative Revolution

Black Humanism, Black Struggle

"What can you say about God in light of human suffering in the world?" asks Rice religion scholar Anthony Pinn. "Nothing," he says, "because there is no God." In this conversation, we talk about black humanism and its connection to black activism and empowerment. Does black humanism betray African-American cultural tradition? Can you motivate people to activism without the church community? Are humanists ready to embrace the cause of justice even when it feels like a Sisyphean task?

34 MIN2017 OCT 22
Comments
Black Humanism, Black Struggle

Taking a Knee

Are white NFL team owners like modern slave masters? Do symbolic gestures produce fruitful political conversations? What kind of historical reckoning would be necessary for real social and political change? Williams historian Gretchen Long considers what the NFL protests signify about race in the United States today.

42 MIN2017 OCT 15
Comments
Taking a Knee

Politics and Hope

How does one recover from catastrophe? Why does politics fail and how does one find courage to continue? What can be done to recover the possibilities of collective action? Intellectual historian Richard King does a deep dive into the thought of Hannah Arendt, looking for some answers.

40 MIN2017 OCT 8
Comments
Politics and Hope

Disaster Politics

Why do presidents so often mess up disaster relief? Why is Congress so useless when it comes to rational planning and policy? Is any way to create a change in the political dynamic? Oxford political historian Gareth Davies talks disaster politics.

43 MIN2017 OCT 1
Comments
Disaster Politics

Latest Episodes

Food Safety, Food Politics

E. coli. Listeria. Salmonella. When you turn on the news, it's hard not to hear about some tragic outbreak caused by lettuce, or beef, or something unknown. Why do outbreaks occur with such regularity? Is a failure of big government? Or is it big business putting profits above its customers? Or is it a regulatory state that is underfunded and overtasked? Timothy Lytton, Distinguished University Professor at Georgia State University, gives us some answers.

47 MINJUN 23
Comments
Food Safety, Food Politics

HAL 9000

When we think about AI, many of us have in mind HAL 9000 from the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. But AI is here and it is not quite like the movies. So what does AI look like today? How it reshaping contemporary society and government? Whose interests does it serve and, for those pessimistic about its influence, is there anything that can be done to ameliorate its negative effects? Tim Hwang, the Director of the Ethics and Governance of AI Initiative at Harvard and MIT works through the possibilities.

43 MIN2018 MAR 18
Comments
HAL 9000

Solitude

What does it mean to be alone? Is aloneness, as Thoreau said, necessary to live deliberately? Or is it perhaps a curse of modern life made worse by mass media and cultural fragmentation? In this episode, American Studies scholar Ina Bergmann talks about the cultures of solitude in past and present.

36 MIN2017 DEC 17
Comments
Solitude

Network Error

How should we understand public debate in the era of social media? Can the internet be salvaged for democracy promotion? Or is it a Trojan horse for a dystopian future? Phil Howard of the Oxford Internet Institute talks about social media and politics.

31 MIN2017 NOV 29
Comments
Network Error

Truth and Post-Truth

How do we maintain a sense of fact and reality in a post-truth age? Are there any objective and universally accepted arbiters of truth left? How can democratic government, or even democratic argument, work without a mutually accepted body of information? Oxford politics scholar Nadia Hilliard talks about truth and post-truth in American government.

34 MIN2017 NOV 15
Comments
Truth and Post-Truth

A Conservative Revolution

What was the impetus behind the American Revolution? Why were the revolutionaries who set up American institutions so concerned to protect property? What political implications does the founding moment have for today? Birmingham political historian Tom Cutterham talks about the conservative impulses in the American Revolution and what radical political change would actually mean.

29 MIN2017 NOV 5
Comments
A Conservative Revolution

Black Humanism, Black Struggle

"What can you say about God in light of human suffering in the world?" asks Rice religion scholar Anthony Pinn. "Nothing," he says, "because there is no God." In this conversation, we talk about black humanism and its connection to black activism and empowerment. Does black humanism betray African-American cultural tradition? Can you motivate people to activism without the church community? Are humanists ready to embrace the cause of justice even when it feels like a Sisyphean task?

34 MIN2017 OCT 22
Comments
Black Humanism, Black Struggle

Taking a Knee

Are white NFL team owners like modern slave masters? Do symbolic gestures produce fruitful political conversations? What kind of historical reckoning would be necessary for real social and political change? Williams historian Gretchen Long considers what the NFL protests signify about race in the United States today.

42 MIN2017 OCT 15
Comments
Taking a Knee

Politics and Hope

How does one recover from catastrophe? Why does politics fail and how does one find courage to continue? What can be done to recover the possibilities of collective action? Intellectual historian Richard King does a deep dive into the thought of Hannah Arendt, looking for some answers.

40 MIN2017 OCT 8
Comments
Politics and Hope

Disaster Politics

Why do presidents so often mess up disaster relief? Why is Congress so useless when it comes to rational planning and policy? Is any way to create a change in the political dynamic? Oxford political historian Gareth Davies talks disaster politics.

43 MIN2017 OCT 1
Comments
Disaster Politics