BLP Conversations: Paul Harding & David Oshinsky

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In honor of the Pulitzer Prize centennial celebrations, Paul Harding, author of Tinkers (2010 winner for Fiction), and David Oshinsky, author of Polio: An American Story (2006 winner for History), sat down to discuss the responsibility of the writer in treating questions of medical science, and the power of authorial imagination to evoke the lived experience of illness in fiction and nonfiction. This conversation was supported by the Pulitzer Prize Campfire Initiative and hosted by the NYU Center for the Humanities.

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BLP Conversations: Norman Lock & Constantin Severin

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In this conversation, Norman Lock, author of, most recently, the American Novels series, and Romanian visual artist Constantin Severin, founder of the Archetypal Expressionism movement, explore ecstatic visions, healing the world through metaphoric language, and the ways their work seeks to “quote” the past for the purpose of enriching the present.

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BLP Conversations: Cormac James & Philip Hoare

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In this conversation, Cormac James, author of the novel The Surfacing, and Philip Hoare—whose nonfiction works such as The Whale and The Sea Inside blur the line between literary and natural history—ruminate on the ever-evolving relationship between man and nature, and how that relationship is enriched through literature and science.

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BLP Conversations: Michael Coffey & Mark Epstein

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In this conversation, Michael Coffey, author of the short story collection The Business of Naming Things, and Mark Epstein, M.D., a psychiatrist and author known for exploring the interplay of Buddhism and psychotherapy, discuss the life and work of Samuel Beckett, emotional experiences that surpass language, and literature as a means toward self-discovery and mindfulness.

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BLP Conversations: Jonathan D. Moreno & John Pankow

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In this conversation, Jonathan D. Moreno, author of Impromptu Man: J.L. Moreno and the Origins of Psychodrama, Encounter Culture, and the Social Network, speaks to actor John Pankow who plays television executive Merc Lapidus on the Showtime/BBC series Episodes. Together they examine the psychological petri dish of group theater and the ways it grew to influence science and life offstage.

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BLP Conversations: Sharona Muir & Christof Koch

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In this conversation, Sharona Muir, author of the highly acclaimed debut novel Invisible Beasts, speaks to Christof Koch, Chief Scientific Officer of the Allen Institute for Brain Science and author of numerous books, about our scientific understanding of consciousness and subjectivity in relation to art and culture. As their thinking pushes beyond the realm of modern humans they relate these topics to prehistoric man and the animal kingdom.

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BLP Conversations: David C. Cassidy & Dava Sobel

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In this conversation, David C. Cassidy, author of Beyond Uncertainty: Heisenberg, Quantum Physics, and the Bomb, and best–selling science writer Dava Sobel discuss the “quantum leap of creative imagination” it took to make the transition into writing historical science drama. Staged readings of their first plays—Cassidy’s Farm Hall, about captured German nuclear scientists at the end of World War II, and Sobel’s And the Sun Stood Still, about Nicolaus Copernicus—were presented before meetings of the American Physical Society.

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BLP Conversations: Mary Cappello & Christine Montross

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In this conversation, Mary Cappello, author of the memoir Awkward: A Detour, explores the divergence between literary and psychiatric narratives of disease with Dr. Christine Montross, a practicing psychiatrist and poet. Together, they delve into the disconcerting pleasures of poetry and the mysterious unknowability of the mind. Continue reading…


BLP Conversations: Tim Horvath & Mark Changizi

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass. Horvath-Changizi-banner

In this conversation, Tim Horvath, author of the short story collection Understories, and Mark Changizi, a theoretical cognitive scientist, discuss the evolutionary science behind language and reading, while exploring the brain’s response to written language and music, and the potential for harnessing both into evocative fiction. Continue reading…


BLP Conversations: Charles L. Bardes & Tom Sleigh

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In this conversation, Charles L. Bardes, physician and author of Pale Faces: The Masks of Anemia (from the BLP Pathographies series), and critically-acclaimed poet Tom Sleigh explore the way myths influenced their psyches, and how the narratives of the gods were transposed onto classrooms and football games and suburban neighborhoods in their early writerly minds. Continue reading…


BLP Conversations: Austin Ratner & Joseph E. LeDoux

Welcome to the BLP Conversations series, featuring dialogues between people whose lifework, like BLP’s mission, explores the creative territory at the intersection of the arts and sciences, and has become a testament to how science and the humanities can join forces to educate and inspire. This online series is inspired by E.O. Wilson and Robert Hass, whose talk about the connections between science and the arts was published in our book The Poetic Species: A Conversation with Edward O. Wilson and Robert Hass.

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In the first installment of the BLP Conversations series, Austin Ratner, author of the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature award-wining novel The Jump Artist, speaks to Joseph E. LeDoux, professor and director of the Emotional Brain Institute at NYU, about the brain-mind and art-science divides. Their conversation traverses the more provocative theories of biology, psychoanalysis, and technology—from emergent properties to Freud to the Singularity. While LeDoux, a neuroscientist, discusses the neurological complexities of fear, Ratner—a trained physician who left the field to focus on writing—comes to terms with his own fear of one day being replaced by a novel-writing robot. Continue reading…