The James Madison Program’s new Initiative on Freedom of Thought, Inquiry, and Expression (the “Free Speech Initiative”) will “promote, explain, and defend free speech and academic freedom.” Keith Whittington and Bernard Haykel, co-directors of the Initiative, join Madison’s Notes to discuss the need for and work of the Initiative.

Initiative Homepage: https://jmp.princeton.edu/freespeech

What did Aristotle and Shakespeare mean to Harry Jaffa, and what might they mean to America? Can extremism be prudent? What is the nature of the crisis facing the West today? Glenn Ellmers, senior fellow with the Claremont Institute, joins the show to discuss his new book, “The Soul of Politics: Harry V. Jaffa and the Fight for America.”

The Soul of Politics: https://www.encounterbooks.com/books/the-soul-of-politics/

Can we learn how to rule? How do military innovations change civil society? What did Machiavelli learn from Xenophon? Shilo Brooks, Faculty Director and Teaching Associate Professor in the Engineering Leadership Program at the University of Colorado Boulder, joins the show to discuss “The Education of Cyrus,” by Xenophon.

The Education of Cyrus: https://www.cornellpress.cornell.edu/book/9780801487507/the-education-of-cyrus/

Did the sexual revolution create identity politics? Why are young men and women so unhappy? Mary Eberstadt, Panula Chair in Christian Culture at the Catholic Information Center and Senior Research Fellow at the Faith and Reason Institute, joins the show to answer these questions and others and discuss her new book, “Primal Screams: How the Sexual Revolution Created Identity Politics.”

Primal Screams: https://templetonpress.org/books/primal-screams/

How are hiring and admissions decisions made in the hard sciences if not by merit? What are the risks of allowing science to be politicized? Professors Dorian Abbot (University of Chicago), Anna Krylov (University of Southern California), David Romps (University of California, Berkeley), and Bernhardt Trout (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), join the show to answer these questions and others.

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Why doesn’t Socrates get drunk? Is love finding your “other half”? What’s the relationship between comedy and tragedy, love and immortality? Marcus Gibson, Director of the Princeton Initiative in Catholic Thought, returns to Madison’s Notes to continue our journey through the Platonic dialogues with a discussion of Plato’s Symposium.

Dorian Abbot is an Associate Professor of Geophysical Sciences at the University of Chicago. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) had invited Abbot to deliver their prestigious Carlson Lecture, but rescinded the invitation after receiving complaints about an article Abbot had written for Newsweek, titled “The Diversity Problem on Campus.” In response, Princeton University’s James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions invited Abbot to speak at the James Madison Program. He’ll do so live on Zoom on October 21st, at 4:30 PM ET. Abbot joins the podcast to discuss MIT’s capitulation, academic freedom in the hard sciences, and more.

Register for Abbot’s Lecture at the James Madison Program: https://jmp.princeton.edu/events/climate-and-potential-life-other-planets

Jack Phillips is the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakewood, Colorado. In 2012, Jack Phillips declined to create a custom wedding cake celebrating a so-called same-sex marriage. The men who requested the cake filed a charge with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, beginning a legal battle that reached the U.S. Supreme Court. Jack Phillips joins the show to discuss his new book, “The Cost of My Faith: How a Decision in My Cake Shop Took Me to the Supreme Court.” Joining Jack is Jake Warner, legal counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom’s Appellate Team.

The Cost of My Faith: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-cost-of-my-faith-jack-phillips/1136404933

What went wrong in Afghanistan, and who is to blame? Is America safer today than on September 10, 2001? What lessons should the leaders of America’s foreign policy draw from the war in Afghanistan? Ambassador Nathan Sales is a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, the former U.S. State Department Coordinator for Counterterrorism, and former acting Under Secretary of State for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights. He joins the show to answer these questions and others.

The James Madison Program: https://jmp.princeton.edu/events

Why is Jordan Peterson so popular? In what ways is Jordan Peterson’s approach to Scripture unique? What can Christians learn from Peterson about the Bible? Christopher Kaczor, Professor of Philosophy at Loyola Marymount University, joins Madison’s Notes to answer these questions and discuss his new book, “Jordan Peterson, God, and Christianity: The Search for a Meaningful Life.”

Jordan Peterson, God, and Christianity: The Search for a Meaningful Life: https://www.wordonfire.org/peterson-book/

What does the U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs do? How can a liberal arts education help you personally and professionally? Roger Carstens, U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs, joins Madison’s Notes to answer these questions and more.

What is academic freedom for? What are the greatest threats to academic freedom today? Should Critical Race Theory be taught on college campuses? What about in K-12 classrooms? Keith Whittington, Chairman of the Academic Freedom Alliance’s Academic Committee and the William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Politics at Princeton University, joins the show to answer these questions and discuss the work of the Academic Freedom Alliance.

The Academic Freedom Alliance: https://academicfreedom.org/

Are Books VIII and IX the climax of the Republic? Is 21st century America a democratic or oligarchic society? Are democratic societies destined for tyranny? Marcus Gibson, Director of the Princeton Initiative in Catholic Thought, returns to Madison’s Notes to continue our series on the Platonic dialogues with a discussion of Books VIII and IX of the Republic.

Is the Declaration of Independence unique? Does the Declaration prescribe a form of government? What is the relationship between the Declaration and the Constitution? Allen C. Guelzo, Director of the James Madison Program’s Initiative on Politics and Statesmanship, joins the show to answer these questions and more.

Harry and Me: https://claremontreviewofbooks.com/harry-and-me/

Gigi Georges has had an extensive career in politics, public service, and academia. She joins Madison’s Notes to discuss her new book, “Downeast: Five Maine Girls and the Unseen Story of Rural America.” Georges discusses rootedness, the importance of home, life in rural America, the double-edged sword of “Progress,” and more.

Downeast: https://www.harpercollins.com/products/downeast-gigi-georges?variant=32306138284066

How did American Catholics go from subjects to citizens? Who is the “godfather” of the First Amendment? How can spiritual and temporal duties be reconciled? Michael Breidenbach, Associate Professor of History at Ave Maria University, joins the show to answer these questions and discuss his new book, “Our Dear-Bought Liberty: Catholics and Religious Toleration in Early America.”

Does God need politics? What does it mean to be free? Why should we care about tradition? Sohrab Ahmari, op-ed editor of the New York Post, joins Madison’s Notes to discuss his new book, “The Unbroken Thread: Discovering the Wisdom of Tradition in an Age of Chaos.” 

 

Why is education so important in a democracy? Are democracies capable of producing the citizens they need? What do John Locke and Alexis de Tocqueville have to teach us about education in a liberal democracy? Jeffrey Sikkenga, Executive Director of the Ashbrook Center, joins Madison’s Notes to answer these questions and more.

About the Ashbrook Center: https://ashbrook.org/about/

Helen Andrews, senior editor at The American Conservative, joins Madison’s Notes to discuss her new book, “Boomers: The Men and Women Who Promised Freedom and Delivered Disaster.”

Boomers: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/617494/boomers-by-helen-andrews/

Was Socrates guilty? What is the relationship between the philosopher and the city? What does it mean to live an “examined life”? Marcus Gibson, John and Daria Barry Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Princeton University’s James Madison Program, returns to the show to discuss The Apology of Socrates in this second episode of our series on the Platonic dialogues.

The Complete Works of Plato: https://www.hackettpublishing.com/philosophy/complete-works