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This week on “The Learning Curve,” co-hosts Cara Candal and Gerard Robinson talk with Cass Sunstein, the Robert Walmsley University Professor at Harvard Law School, and the author of The New York Times best-selling book, The World According to Star Wars. He shares what drew him to this topic, and why, after 45 years, these movies have become a $70 billion multimedia franchise and continue to have such wide intergenerational appeal. They review some of the classic myths and legends that influenced George Lucas, the brilliant creator of the films. Prof. Sunstein explains some of the larger civic educational lessons found in the space epic, including the war between the democratic Republic and the autocratic Empire, in which the Jedi Knights rebel against imperial tyranny. They also discuss the story of Anakin Skywalker, and his turn to the Dark Side; and the supernatural “Force,” that imbues a series classified as science fiction with a transcendent quality.
Stories of the Week: In England, university and student groups are opposing government plans to set minimum eligibility requirements for student loans. In New York City, Mayor Eric Adams is seeking an extension of mayoral control of the school district, which for the past 20 years has meant important oversight authority over the schools chancellor and most of the governing panel.
Cass Sunstein is the Robert Walmsley University Professor at Harvard, where he is founder and director of the Program on Behavioral Economics and Public Policy. He is the most cited law professor in the United States and likely internationally. He has served as Administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs and as a member of the President’s Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies. He is the winner of the 2018 Holberg Prize. His many books include the bestseller Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness (with Richard H. Thaler), Simpler: The Future of Government, #Republic: Divided Democracy in the Age of Social Media, and The New York Times bestseller, The World According to Star Wars. He is a frequent adviser to governments all over the world.
The next episode will air on Weds., May 18th, with Nicholas Lemann, Joseph Pulitzer II and Edith Pulitzer Moore Professor of Journalism; Dean Emeritus; Director, Columbia World Projects at Columbia University; and author of the books The Promised Land: The Great Black Migration and How It Changed America and The Big Test – The Origin, Design, and Purpose of the SAT.
Tweet of the Week:
Educators and children’s health experts alike argue students need more support to prevent the overuse of technology from leading to unhealthy behaviors in the classroom. https://t.co/YM5Cg49Fxy
— Education Week (@educationweek) May 9, 2022
Universities oppose plan for student cap and loans in England
Mayor Adams headed to Albany to push for mayoral control
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