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Key Conversations with Phi Beta Kappa

Lantigua Williams & Co.

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Key Conversations with Phi Beta Kappa
Key Conversations with Phi Beta Kappa

Key Conversations with Phi Beta Kappa

Lantigua Williams & Co.

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About Us

Key Conversations with Phi Beta Kappa is a podcast from The Phi Beta Kappa Society's Visiting Scholars program, featuring leading scholars across multiple disciplines in conversation with Fred Lawrence, PBK's Secretary and CEO.

Latest Episodes

Celebrated Author Edwidge Danticat Retraces the Arc of Her Literary Genius

While promoting her new book, an accomplished short story collection called Everything Inside, the PBK member and noted writer talks about her formative experiences, like imagining herself not as Madeline but the classic’s author, and writing for a high school paper in New York City a mere year after immigrating to the US from Haiti. She opens up about “borrowed memories” in her life and her work, about the role of death and ritual in healing, and the continuity of purpose in her writing

29 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Celebrated Author Edwidge Danticat Retraces the Arc of Her Literary Genius

How Neuroscientist Susan Birren Is Mapping New Pathways from the Brain

The human brain has 100 billion cells, and there’s still so much to discover about it. Brandeis University neuroscientist Susan Birren has dedicated her distinguished career to decoding the mysteries of how the brain functions and how it communicates with the rest of the body. In this episode, she talks to Phi Beta Kappa Secretary and CEO Fred Lawrence about the challenges and triumphs of such a singular pursuit.

23 MINAUG 30
Comments
How Neuroscientist Susan Birren Is Mapping New Pathways from the Brain

REPLAY: Economist Paula Stephan on Incentives and Gender Biases

As a college student, ProfessorPaula Stephanfell in love with economics as a way to understand and influence systems that impacted many people's lives. Years of documenting and analyzing the role of gender in academic performance and the impact of monetary and status incentives on scholars and universities have led her to startling conclusions. In this episode, PBK's Fred Lawrence asks the Georgia State University’s to go beyond the research.

25 MINAUG 2
Comments
REPLAY: Economist Paula Stephan on Incentives and Gender Biases

REPLAY: We Ask Literature Professor Ayanna Thompson “What Would Shakespeare Say?”

Ayanna Thompson specializes in Renaissance drama and issues of race in performance. She discusses the universality of Shakespeare while honing in on how he would have reacted to racialized readings of his work. Would he recognize that race plays a role in his plays? Would he agree with Thompson that one of his characters delivers “the first Black-Power speech in English”?

25 MINJUN 28
Comments
REPLAY: We Ask Literature Professor Ayanna Thompson “What Would Shakespeare Say?”

REPLAY: Former Diplomat Harold Koh Is Worried

In our first episode, Fred Lawrence, Secretary and CEO of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, chats with his longtime friend, professor Harold Hongju Koh from Yale Law School. Professor Koh is a distinguished former diplomat and a renowned authority on public and international law. Their intimate and revealing conversation covers Koh’s expansive knowledge of foreign affairs, his views on the state of our nation, and the lasting influence of a father whose curiosity and capacious mind still inspire him.

32 MINMAY 31
Comments
REPLAY: Former Diplomat Harold Koh Is Worried

Middle East Scholar Lisa Anderson on Leading a University in Cairo During the Arab Spring

Her passion for Middle East studies was ignited during a college course with an intense teacher. She immersed herself in the region’s history and language--and has never looked back. For this episode, Prof. Anderson retraces her growing enthusiasm for and deepening knowledge of the Arab world, which saw her break scholarly ground in Libya, take up residence as a professor at American University Cairo, and eventually landed her in the president’s office mere weeks before the upheaval of the Arab Spring.

28 MINMAY 3
Comments
Middle East Scholar Lisa Anderson on Leading a University in Cairo During the Arab Spring

SPECIAL EXTENDED EPISODE: What Should We Make of the College Admissions Scandal?

In this special extended episode, Phi Beta Kappa Secretary and CEO Fred Lawrence invites two experienced colleagues to a frank discussion about the unfolding college admission scandal that has rocked higher education. There are no easy answers, and responsibility is spread around generously, but the exchange is one that will certainly spark discussions at home, in the classroom, and in vaulted academic halls around the country.

41 MINAPR 1
Comments
SPECIAL EXTENDED EPISODE: What Should We Make of the College Admissions Scandal?

Historian Ed Larson Takes a Critical Look at the Presidency

A Pulitzer Prize winner, Larson tears the pages of history to offer insight into what made these presidents tick. And what today's leaders can learn from them.

19 MINFEB 25
Comments
Historian Ed Larson Takes a Critical Look at the Presidency

Economist Paula Stephan on Incentives and Gender Biases

Stephan has spent years documenting and analyzing the role of gender in academic performance and the impact of monetary and status incentives on scholars and universities. In this episode she shared some startling conclusions.

25 MINJAN 14
Comments
Economist Paula Stephan on Incentives and Gender Biases

Amy Cheng Vollmer: The Unofficial Ambassador for Good Bacteria

In this episode, Fred Lawrence, Secretary and CEO of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, welcomes professor Amy Cheng Vollmer from Swarthmore College. A microbiologist whose research centers on how bacteria react to different types of stresses, discusses her ongoing fascination with bacteria, why failure is important in her field, the need for STEAM, not just STEM, and what it means to her to be a Chinese-American woman in the sciences.

23 MIN2018 DEC 3
Comments
Amy Cheng Vollmer: The Unofficial Ambassador for Good Bacteria

Latest Episodes

Celebrated Author Edwidge Danticat Retraces the Arc of Her Literary Genius

While promoting her new book, an accomplished short story collection called Everything Inside, the PBK member and noted writer talks about her formative experiences, like imagining herself not as Madeline but the classic’s author, and writing for a high school paper in New York City a mere year after immigrating to the US from Haiti. She opens up about “borrowed memories” in her life and her work, about the role of death and ritual in healing, and the continuity of purpose in her writing

29 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Celebrated Author Edwidge Danticat Retraces the Arc of Her Literary Genius

How Neuroscientist Susan Birren Is Mapping New Pathways from the Brain

The human brain has 100 billion cells, and there’s still so much to discover about it. Brandeis University neuroscientist Susan Birren has dedicated her distinguished career to decoding the mysteries of how the brain functions and how it communicates with the rest of the body. In this episode, she talks to Phi Beta Kappa Secretary and CEO Fred Lawrence about the challenges and triumphs of such a singular pursuit.

23 MINAUG 30
Comments
How Neuroscientist Susan Birren Is Mapping New Pathways from the Brain

REPLAY: Economist Paula Stephan on Incentives and Gender Biases

As a college student, ProfessorPaula Stephanfell in love with economics as a way to understand and influence systems that impacted many people's lives. Years of documenting and analyzing the role of gender in academic performance and the impact of monetary and status incentives on scholars and universities have led her to startling conclusions. In this episode, PBK's Fred Lawrence asks the Georgia State University’s to go beyond the research.

25 MINAUG 2
Comments
REPLAY: Economist Paula Stephan on Incentives and Gender Biases

REPLAY: We Ask Literature Professor Ayanna Thompson “What Would Shakespeare Say?”

Ayanna Thompson specializes in Renaissance drama and issues of race in performance. She discusses the universality of Shakespeare while honing in on how he would have reacted to racialized readings of his work. Would he recognize that race plays a role in his plays? Would he agree with Thompson that one of his characters delivers “the first Black-Power speech in English”?

25 MINJUN 28
Comments
REPLAY: We Ask Literature Professor Ayanna Thompson “What Would Shakespeare Say?”

REPLAY: Former Diplomat Harold Koh Is Worried

In our first episode, Fred Lawrence, Secretary and CEO of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, chats with his longtime friend, professor Harold Hongju Koh from Yale Law School. Professor Koh is a distinguished former diplomat and a renowned authority on public and international law. Their intimate and revealing conversation covers Koh’s expansive knowledge of foreign affairs, his views on the state of our nation, and the lasting influence of a father whose curiosity and capacious mind still inspire him.

32 MINMAY 31
Comments
REPLAY: Former Diplomat Harold Koh Is Worried

Middle East Scholar Lisa Anderson on Leading a University in Cairo During the Arab Spring

Her passion for Middle East studies was ignited during a college course with an intense teacher. She immersed herself in the region’s history and language--and has never looked back. For this episode, Prof. Anderson retraces her growing enthusiasm for and deepening knowledge of the Arab world, which saw her break scholarly ground in Libya, take up residence as a professor at American University Cairo, and eventually landed her in the president’s office mere weeks before the upheaval of the Arab Spring.

28 MINMAY 3
Comments
Middle East Scholar Lisa Anderson on Leading a University in Cairo During the Arab Spring

SPECIAL EXTENDED EPISODE: What Should We Make of the College Admissions Scandal?

In this special extended episode, Phi Beta Kappa Secretary and CEO Fred Lawrence invites two experienced colleagues to a frank discussion about the unfolding college admission scandal that has rocked higher education. There are no easy answers, and responsibility is spread around generously, but the exchange is one that will certainly spark discussions at home, in the classroom, and in vaulted academic halls around the country.

41 MINAPR 1
Comments
SPECIAL EXTENDED EPISODE: What Should We Make of the College Admissions Scandal?

Historian Ed Larson Takes a Critical Look at the Presidency

A Pulitzer Prize winner, Larson tears the pages of history to offer insight into what made these presidents tick. And what today's leaders can learn from them.

19 MINFEB 25
Comments
Historian Ed Larson Takes a Critical Look at the Presidency

Economist Paula Stephan on Incentives and Gender Biases

Stephan has spent years documenting and analyzing the role of gender in academic performance and the impact of monetary and status incentives on scholars and universities. In this episode she shared some startling conclusions.

25 MINJAN 14
Comments
Economist Paula Stephan on Incentives and Gender Biases

Amy Cheng Vollmer: The Unofficial Ambassador for Good Bacteria

In this episode, Fred Lawrence, Secretary and CEO of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, welcomes professor Amy Cheng Vollmer from Swarthmore College. A microbiologist whose research centers on how bacteria react to different types of stresses, discusses her ongoing fascination with bacteria, why failure is important in her field, the need for STEAM, not just STEM, and what it means to her to be a Chinese-American woman in the sciences.

23 MIN2018 DEC 3
Comments
Amy Cheng Vollmer: The Unofficial Ambassador for Good Bacteria