Pell Center

  • Immigration and America’s Dairy Farms with Julie Keller

    Air Dates: June 10-16, 2019 The super-heated rhetoric over immigration and border security in the United States today is part of a long tradition of anti-immigration hysteria.  Julie Keller puts our recent panic in a sociological context—exploring changes in who works on American dairy farms, and how they traveled from Latin America to farms in the upper-Mid-West.  Julie C. Keller is an assistant professor of sociology at the University of … Read More

  • New Papers in Series on Timor-Leste Published

    Newport, RI – Today the Pell Center released two new papers on the foreign policy of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste. Finding Partners: Timor-Leste’s Evolving Security Ties with Southeast Asia, authored by Natalie Sambhi, explores how Timor-Leste’s sense of geopolitical vulnerability, as a young democracy in an increasingly rivalrous region—when coupled with a number of pressing domestic imperatives—has played a key role in shaping its strategic outlook. Ms. Sambhi is … Read More

  • Disability Rights with Peter Blanck

    Sixty-one million Americans—that’s 26% of the population—live with some kind of disability.  These are our neighbors, our friends, our co-workers, and our family members.  While the Americans with Disabilities Act has improved the lives of many since it became law nearly three decades ago, Peter Blanck tells us the history and the ongoing challenges for those with disabilities can be stark.  Blanck is University Professor at Syracuse University—an academic rank … Read More

  • Human Caused Environmental Catastrophe with Elizabeth Kolbert

    Air Dates: April 22-28, 2019 The fossil record of planet earth tells us that there have been five mass extinctions—the most famous being the fifth that destroyed the dinosaurs. Elizabeth Kolbert warns that we’re in the midst, now, of the sixth extinction and its cause is human activity. Kolbert’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book, The Sixth Extinction, documents the risk to species across the planet. The threat is human activity.  The fabric … Read More

  • The Mueller Report is the Public’s Information

    Information is, truthfully, the coin of the realm in politics and campaigns—it always has been—even more so now in the era of social media where memes, hashtags, and short quips can have lasting and strategic political consequences. Let me share with you a dark secret: since the campaign of 2016, I have marveled at the sophistication I see in the way President Trump and his political operation use information; how … Read More

  • Technically True, but Spin

    In 2005, the United States Department of Defense announced a list of excess military bases that it wanted to close as part of a cost-saving measure.  Anyone who has lived near a closed base will appreciate that this is an incredibly disruptive thing for communities who lose an important employer, community members, both in uniform and their families, and a source of pride—an operational military unit in their home-town that … Read More

  • Healthcare Through a Doctor’s Eyes with Helen Ouyang, MD

    Air Dates: March 25-31, 2019 Public understanding of healthcare is driven principally by our own personal experience—and that of our loved ones—with doctors, nurses, and hospitals—and for many, it can feel overwhelming. Dr. Helen Ouyang is an emergency room doctor at one of America’s best hospitals, but admits she found it difficult to access the healthcare system when she had her own health scare.  Helen Ouyang, M.D., M.P.H., is an … Read More

  • Llewellyn King on Story in the Public Square

    Technology vs. Democracy with Llewellyn King

    Air Dates: March 12-17, 2019 Democracy relies on facts, accurately reported and commonly understood—and journalists play an essential role in building that shared body of knowledge. Llewellyn King argues that technological change is placing great strain on our democratic societies. Llewellyn King is the creator, executive producer and host of “White House Chronicle,” a weekly news and public affairs program, airing nationwide on more than 200 PBS and public, educational … Read More

  • Jeff Jackson on Story in the Public Square

    Destroy All Monsters with Jeff Jackson

    Air Dates: March 5 – 10, 2019 Stories are sometimes told with a particular message for their audiences.  Other times, they are just stories. And in some cases, you can’t tell the difference. Enter the playwright, songwriter and novelist Jeff Jackson, who explores the intersection of fame and violence in a remarkable new novel. Jackson is a novelist, playwright, visual artist, and songwriter. His second novel Destroy All Monsters: The … Read More

  • Alice Robb on Story in the Public Square

    Why We Dream with Alice Robb

    Air Dates: February 26 – March 3, 2019 Poets, rock stars, authors—and even we mere mortals—all share a nightly sojourn—a temporary stay–in the land of dreams. Alice Robb argues they are not just flights of fancy, but critical to health and happiness in our waking hours too. Robb is a science writer whose work has been published in The New Republic where she was a staff writer, The New York … Read More