Aspen Ideas to Go Podcast

In 1987, E.D. Hirsch sparked a national debate with his book "Cultural Literacy," claiming that there is a foundation of common knowledge every American should know - and codifying it in a list of 5,000 facts and cultural references. Today, amidst giant demographic and social shifts, the United States needs such common knowledge more than ever. But a 21st century sense of cultural literacy has to be radically more diverse and inclusive. And it needs to come not from one person but from all of us. Eric Liu, executive director of the Aspen Institute Citizen and American Identity Program, asks Anne-Marie Slaughter (president of New America), Jose Antonio Vargas (Pulitzer Prize-winning author), and Hirsh what they think it means to be American.
Tuesday, February 23, 2016 - 03:00
Actress Ashley Judd is an advocate and activist who has traveled the world promoting empowerment and equality, effective grassroots programs, and strategies to advance women's health, curb HIV, alleviate poverty and much more. As a global champion for women, she has led major campaigns to reduce maternal mortality and increase resources for women and girls. Later in the episode: The Best Thinking about the Transformative Power of Women and Girls featuring a stellar lineup including Arianna Huffington, Jane Harman, Shiza Shahid of the Malala Fund, and others.
Tuesday, February 16, 2016 - 03:00
In honor of President's Day, biographer Jon Meacham explores Jefferson's complicated legacy and suggests how we might reclaim the Jeffersonian insistence that political leaders be conversant with the philosophical and cultural currents of their time. Meacham wrote the No. 1 New York Times bestseller "Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power."
Tuesday, February 9, 2016 - 03:00
Hear what former prisoner Shaka Senghor, who was incarcerated for 19 years and now directs strategy for the bipartisan initiative #cut50, has to say about President Obama's recent pledge to end solitary confinement for juveniles and low-level offenders. Senghor shares his insights from seven years in solitary in one of the nation's most violent prisons. Since 1980, the number of people incarcerated in the United States has more than quadrupled; the US now has the largest prison population in the world.
Tuesday, February 2, 2016 - 03:00
Can art tackle some of the most difficult social-justice questions we face today? Over the past year we have witnessed images of our country at war with itself; how can poetry dispel alienation and give rise to a new level of citizenship in America Featuring three of America's most powerful poetic voices: Elizabeth Alexander (author of The Light of the World), Juan Felipe Herrera (current United States Poet Laureate), and Claudia Rankine (author of Citizen: An American Lyric). The conversation is moderated by Eric Liu, executive director of the Aspen Institute Citizenship and American Identity Program.
Tuesday, January 26, 2016 - 03:00

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