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Season Two: Episode Directory



What is the complexity in simplicity?

Howard Gardner with Gabrielle Oliveira

November 1, 2021

Everyone has heard the mantra: keep it simple. Why make something more complicated than it needs to be? In this episode, Howard Gardner reflects on the complexities inherent in simplicity via the global uptake of his famous theory of multiple intelligences.

illustration: two sets of lines, white and clear and black and scrambled


What if art and science aren’t opposites?

Ellen Winner with Keith Sawyer

November 8, 2021

There is a seemingly age-old division between art and science, which on one hand attributes emotions and creativity to art, and on the other hand, espouses science with logic and reason. Join Ellen Winner in this episode as she troubles this dichotomy and helps us to see the ways that art and science overlap.

illustration of a artistic, colorful brain


What if we are not alone in the universe?

Andrea Vicini with Kristina Wirtz

November 15, 2021

The possibility of extra-terrestrial or beyond human life is a common theme in popular culture. However, in this episode, Andrea Vicini asks us to seriously entertain what an encounter with the Other might help us learn about our own humanity.

image of universe


Are prisons separate from society?

Matt DelSesto with David Sellers & Allison Pyo

November 22, 2021

Large walls and secure perimeters physically isolate prisons from the rest of society. This episode, however, draws on insights from the Boston College Inside-Out Program to explore how what happens within prison walls is often more connected to the rest of society than we might think. The program instructor and former participants discuss how their experiences related to ideas about perpetrators, victims, harm, and punishment blur the boundaries between life inside and outside of prisons.

illustration: gate and lock


Stop teaching?

Anna Stetsenko with Megan Laverty

November 29, 2021

It is far from a secret that contemporary schools aren't perfect, but should we really stop teaching students? In this episode, Anna Stetsenko offers us the provocation to stop teaching as we know it and radically reimagine a kind of teaching that might be better described as learning.

illustration: students in a classroom


Is expertise dangerous?

Marina McCoy with Alexandra Michel

December 6, 2021

We often turn to experts in our lives for all kinds of matters. It isn't uncommon, for example, to turn to surgeons for medical expertise or call upon expert testimonies in the court room. However, Marina McCoy argues that our commonsense understandings of expertise also pose major problems and expose us to undesirable outcomes.

illustration: man standing with large red cloud shaped like a brain


Where is the boundary between reality and fiction?

Costantine V. Nakassis with Michael Lempert

December 13, 2021

We often feel that there is a sharp distinction between the world of fiction and the "real world." For example, is there really any doubt that the Marvel superheroes are not real, that they only live in fictional representations? Costantine Nakassis, however, draws our attention to the unsettling, though common ways in which we blur the boundary between fact and fiction all the time. Join Constantine in exploring the boundary between reality and representation.

illustration of lines


Is purpose both backward and forward-looking?

William Damon with Howard Gardner

January 17, 2022

In conversations about human development, talk about purpose often centers on providing meaning to the present and guiding our future life trajectory. However, William Damon draws upon his own experience unpacking his family history as an example to consider how we can look backward to our past as a resource to create purposeful futures.

illustration: walking on a clockwise on a clock


Could dementia be a gateway to mystical experience?

Mark Freeman with Suzanne Kirschner

January 24, 2022

There is no doubt that dementia is a painful and heartbreaking disease. However, in accompanying his mother in her own experience with dementia, Mark Freeman comes to some unexpected insights about how dementia can sometimes be understood as more than just loss and deterioration.

illustration of a gate


Have we forgotten about social class?

Andy Hargreaves with Allison Skerret

January 31, 2022

In conversations about diversity, equity, and inclusion, it is not uncommon to discuss differences along axes of race, gender, or sexual orientation. However, what about the pervasive impact of socioeconomic status? In this episode, Andy Hargreaves explores the strong influence of class and why it should not be excluded from our contemporary conversations.

illustration: climing books go the top of a pyramid


Is individuality impossible?

Kenneth Gergen with Samantha Ha DiMuzio

February 7, 2022

Usually, we envision ourselves as individuals who build relationships, comprise communities, and make our own decisions. In this episode, Ken Gergen troubles this notion of individualism and instead offers an alternative perspective based on relationality and coordination. What if relationships come before the individual?

illustration: a large venn diagram that explains traits


Do things happen for a reason?

Karin Nisenbaum with Scott Seider

February 14, 2022

Do you believe in fate? Whether you think everything happens for a reason or is completely up to chance, tune into this episode to reimagine the role of fate in our lives. Join Karin Nisenbaum as she offers an interpretation of character as a kind of destiny.

illustration: colorful stars in the air