Fifteen Questions

Fifteen Questions: Glenda Carpio on Humor, Hum 10, and the Failure of “Success” Stories

The Chair of the English Department sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss rethinking the literary canon and immigrant narratives. “I was the lucky one, I survived,” she says. “What happens to those who are undone by the violence of having to be uprooted?"

Fifteen Questions: Rakesh Khurana on Pizza, Veritas, and “Squishy Things”

The Dean of the College sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss how Harvard has transformed him and the challenges he sees ahead. “I’m not saying that we’re a perfect institution, but we’re trying to be good for the world,” he says.

Peter Der Manuelian

Peter Der Manuelian ’81 is the Barabara Bell Professor of Egyptology and teaches in both the Anthropology department and the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations. Photo by Laurie Thomas.

Fifteen Questions: Peter Der Manuelian on Ancient Egypt, 3D Technology, and Indiana Jones

The Egyptologist sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss using modern technology to study ancient societies. “With a judicious blend of old and new, you can tell some pretty rich stories,” he says.

Fifteen Questions: Cass Sunstein on SCOTUS, Squash, and The Lampoon

The legal scholar sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss why those disillusioned with the Supreme Court’s direction should not give up on the country’s judicial system. “The law is essential to study so we can maintain its best features and improve on those features that aren’t so good,” he says.

Fifteen Questions: Gregory Nagy on Heroes, Tricksters, and his Achilles Tendon

The “Ancient Greek Hero” professor sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss what we can learn from the Ancients. “If we sweep under the rug the bad parts of the heroic world, then we won’t understand why we have to keep processing and seeing what their mistakes were, just as we try to imitate what’s good about them,” he says.

Fifteen Questions: Sheila Jasanoff on STS, Objectivity, and Alternative Facts

The professor of Science and Technology Studies sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss how she came to the field and its unique contributions to today's political landscape. “A way forward is to recognize that disputes of facts are often really disputes over the credibility, the honesty, and the integrity of the body finding the facts,” she says.

Fifteen Questions: Anne Harrington on Hist of Sci, Mental Health, and Ice Cream

The History of Science professor and faculty dean of Pforzheimer House sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss the history of mental health and some pfun Pfoho traditions. “I think the Quad is great, I really do,” she says. “How can we move people’s minds and hearts a little bit on this issue?”

Fifteen Questions: Adele Bacow on Urban Design, Life with Larry, and Book Clubbing

The urban planner and first lady of Harvard sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss her artistic pursuits and her formative college years at Wellesley. “I grew up in a very protected, secure, happy home life,” she says. “And then to come up North and be exposed to all the new ideas and the changes in the world, it was extremely eye-opening.”

Fifteen Questions: Danielle Allen on the Future of Democracy, Optimism, and Minecraft

The political theorist sat down with Fifteen Minutes to talk about practical problem-solving in a divided country. “It’s not exactly that I’m an optimist,” she says. “I’m just a person who believes that failure is not an option. So I’m a ‘not-an-optionist!’”

Diana Eck 15Q

Diana L. Eck, Professor of Comparative Religion and Indian Studies, served as Lowell’s Faculty Dean alongside her wife Dorothy A. Austin for 20 years.

Fifteen Questions: Taeku Lee on Political Science, Civic Engagement, and His Stint as a Premed

The Government professor sat down to discuss his decision to pursue political science in graduate school and the development of ethnic studies at Harvard. “I keenly felt like there was something fundamentally misguided about my pursuit of thinking about politics and political science without understanding at a very fundamental level the history of racial politics in the United States,” he says.

Fifteen Questions: Marc Lipsitch on Covid Modeling, Open-Access Science, and Latte Art

"Being very clear about the scientific rationale for advice, what are the limitations of what we know, and what public health authorities are doing to understand the things they need to know to make better advice — all these go a long way."

Harvey Mansfield Horizontal

Harvey C. Mansfield has taught political philosophy at Harvard for over half a century. One of the few outspoken conservatives on the faculty, he has been a sharp critic of political polarization on campus.

Fifteen Questions: Harvey Mansfield on Ideological Diversity, Trumpism, and his Signature Fedora

One of the University’s most prominent conservative faculty members sat down with Fifteen Minutes to discuss political polarization on campus. “The Harvard Commencement is something like the Democratic National Convention,” he says. “And that’s a hell of a way to run a university.”

Fifteen Anxious Minutes with Dr. David R. Williams

It’s no secret that elections make us anxious. But how does that anxiety affect our health? FM asks Professor David R. Williams, who gathered data and investigated the tangible effects of election-related stress in 2016. His research found that, following the election, participants faced significantly higher risk for heart attacks and strokes.

15 Minutes with Jeffrey Toobin

Toobin swung by the Harvard Crimson to talk about his new book, “American Heiress: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst," his reporting process, and the profession of journalism.

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