AIF Blog

March 13, 2019
CNN's Brian Stelter takes questions from the audience during a discussion with Marty Baron, executive editor of The Washington Post. The two spoke at the Aspen Ideas Festival in June of 2018.The truth is under assault in America, according to Marty Baron, executive editor of The Washington Post. By labeling the press as the opposition party and calling into questions facts, President Trump is subverting the role...
March 07, 2019
 Steve Case is co-founder, CEO, and chairman of Revolution, an investment firm that partners with entrepreneurs to build "built-to-last" businesses. He also co-founded AOL. Steve Case has been on a mission to get shrinking cities in America's "flyover states" to be part of the startup revolution. At Aspen Ideas, journalist Katie Couric asked Case if he noticed a common thread in the 38 cities he had visited. "I...
March 06, 2019
Gina Murdock, Elaine Pagels, and Kate Bowler talk about religion and personal struggles at Winter Words, an author series held by Aspen Words. Their conversation was held February 26.Kate Bowler and Elaine Pagels both teach religion, write about religion, and have experienced immense hardships. In this frank and funny conversation, they explore why people still seek ancient religious teachings in our modern age. In...
February 27, 2019
 Suzanne Jones, Steve Clemons, and Dan Buettner discuss what makes some cities and towns happier than others at Aspen Ideas: Health. The latest World Happiness Report puts the United States in 18th place, behind all the Scandinavian countries, Costa Rica, Canada, and others. The report, issued annually by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network, looks at income, healthy life expectancy, social...
February 20, 2019
Nearly two decades ago, author Colson Whitehead began thinking about writing about the Underground Railroad. “I remembered when I was a kid, I first heard those words…I thought it was a literal train beneath the earth,” he says. He put pen to paper and the result was the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Underground Railroad. In it, the historic secret network of safehouses for runaway slaves becomes a make-believe...
February 13, 2019
Writers Wajahat Ali and Jelani Cobb talk about race, white nationalism, and President Trump at the Aspen Ideas Festival in June.When Americans elected their first black president more than a decade ago, some questioned whether the country had transitioned into a post-racial era. But today race is a more prominent and intransigent problem than ever. As the US grapples with issues like identity politics, the Travel...
February 05, 2019
Canine cognition researchers Brian Hare and Alexandra Horowitz join furry friends on stage at the Aspen Ideas Festival to speak with Ross Andersen, senior editor at The Atlantic, about what dogs are thinking.When your dog wags its tail or welcomes you home, what are they thinking about? How do they perceive you and the world around them? Two canine cognition scientists, Alexandra Horowitz and Brian Hare, share what...
January 29, 2019
 Nadine Strossen, professor at New York Law School, talks about using free speech to combat hate speech at the Aspen Ideas Festival. She was interviewed by Conor Friedersdorf, founding editor of The Best of Journalism. Should rules govern demeaning, disparaging, and degrading speech directed at certain groups? How can we resist hate while protecting free speech? Nadine Strossen, longtime president of...
January 22, 2019
Linguists Deborah Tannen and John McWhorter talk about the evolution of the English language at Aspen Ideas.Young people tend to say “LOL” and “like” a lot. Business jargon — such as “What’s the ask?”— is surfacing in boardrooms. Is the English language deteriorating before our ears? Linguist and author John McWhorter pushes back, saying these modern terms are...
January 16, 2019
Mountaineer and Backbone Media founder Penn Newhard interviews Tommy Caldwell, author of the book, "The Push" about his historic climb up Yosemite's Dawn Wall. Their conversation was held by Aspen Words.What does it take to rock climb one of the world’s hardest routes at night in the bitter cold? Tommy Caldwell, an accomplished climber, says he summoned focus, drive, and endurance to summit...

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