Said and Done for October 2014

Digest of the MIT humanities, arts, and social sciences features a Nobel Prize, a new professorship in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy, three new SHASS websites, and more.

Published monthly during the School terms, and once in the summer, Said and Done is a photo-rich digest from MIT's School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, integrating feature articles with news and research to give a distilled overview of the school's endeavors. For the complete online edition, visit Said and Done. Highlights of the October 2014 edition include:

MIT SHASS alumnus Jean Tirole wins Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences
Jean Tirole PhD '81, a former MIT faculty member and a current annual visiting professor of economics at MIT, was awarded the 2014 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel for his analysis of market power and how governments can better regulate industries from banking to telecommunications.
NobelPrize.orgMIT NewsBloomberg, The New York Times, The Boston Globe 
Recording of Tirole upon receiving the Nobel Prize

Danny Fox named Anshen-Chomsky Professor of Language and Thought
“Danny Fox belongs to the rare breed of researchers who not only discover remarkable new facts about language, but also has the vision to see what these discoveries are teaching us about the mind as a whole, about the structure of language as a part of the human mind, and about the internal workings of language itself,” said David Pesetsky, head of the MIT Department of Linguistics and Philosophy. “He is simultaneously a theoretician and an experimentalist, a brilliant linguist, and a profound cognitive scientist.”

Bateson wins APSA's Almond Award for best disseration in comparative politics 
Assistant Professor Regina Bateson’s dissertation, “Order and Violence in Postwar Guatemala,” won the APSA’s Gabriel A. Almond Award, given annually to the best dissertation in the field of comparative politics.
Bateson webpage

Steve Yablo interviewed by Richard Marshall in 3:AM Magazine

3:AM: What made you become a philosopher?
Stephen Yablo: Hmmmm. I guess it was Hebrew school. The teacher said that we must never judge God, since we don’t know a thing about him. I was in love at the time with Magilla Gorilla, a cartoon character. He struck me as a higher sort of being. This sounded nutty, I realized, and I kept it to myself. Then on hearing that nothing was known about God, I inferred that in particular it wasn’t known that he was not my loveable ape. I was told on raising this question in class that one thing was known after all; God was not Magilla. This confused me enough to start me down the road to philosophy.

All current SHASS research stories by the MIT News team 
Peter Dizikes writes about MIT faculty research on time and spacetime; the effects of means-tested social insurance programs; learning from African technology; the postiive impact of workplace diversity on profit; and barriers to a U.S.-Iran nuclear treaty.
Stories about MIT SHASS research


Global Studies & Languages  Website

Literature at MIT   Website

The Humanities Flim Office   Website

MIT launches a major new music series
The new concert series, MIT Sounding, will feature world premieres, reconstructed classics, and Grammy Award-winning musicians.

Mark Harvey's Aardvark Jazz Orchestra releases new CD 
Comprised of live performances recorded at MIT, Aardvark's 12th CD, "Impressions," is garnering enthusiastic reviews. Harvey is a lecturer in the MIT Music Program, and the esteemed director of the Aardvark Jazz Orchestra.
About + forthcoming performances  |  Commentary at WBUR  |  Mark Harvey webpage

October 30 | Ultimate Truths | MIT SHASS Communications Forum event 
Four brilliant thinkers will explore the differences and similarities in the kinds of knowledge available through inquiry in the sciences and humanities, and the ways that knowledge is obtained. Panelists are the historian, novelist, and columnist James Carroll; philosopher/novelist Rebecca Goldstein; author/physicist Alan Lightman; and biologist Robert Weinberg. Seth Mnookin, associate director of the forum, will moderate. 7-9pm, Room 32-123 (Stata Center)

MIT Music & Theater Arts fall events calendar
Fall events include musical performances by Eviyan, the Jupiter Quartet, the Mysore Brothers, Seth Josel, the Ellipsis Trio, Welsh baritone Jeremy Huw Williams, the MIT Symphony Orchestra, and others, and a theater production of Philoctetes by John Jesurun, the McArthur-winning contemporary author and director.  

Challenging technical privilege | How race and gender matter  
Silent technical privilege occurs when those who "look the part," or conform to society's stereotype of what a tech-savvy, number-crunching programmer or engineer looks like, receive the benefit of the doubt or implicit endorsement in technical settings. At this interactive symposium a panel discussed how technical privilege, stereotype threat and other forms of implicit bias contribute to underrepresentation of various groups in tech fields.  
Story at The Boston Globe |  Video of event  | Event website  

Evolving culture of science engagement | David Kaiser 
Article in the Huffington Post about the "Evolving Culture of Science Engagement" project at MIT, which recently released a detailed report. 
Story at The Huffington Post  |  Interview + report  |  Culture of Science Engagement website

Fact or Fiction: Video games are the future of education?
Few would argue that video games can do it all in terms of education, says Scot Osterweil, a research director in Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Comparative Media Studies program and creative director of the school's Education Arcade initiative to explore how games can be used to promote learning.  
Story at Scientific American


MIT SHASS Bookshelf
New knowledge, innovation, and insight

Explore MIT's humanities, arts and social science fields

The Power of the Humanities at MIT
Op-Ed by Deborah K. Fitzgerald, Kenan Sahin Dean
MIT School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences 

MIT SHASS social media
Facebook | Twitter

Topics: Africa, Arts, Awards, honors and fellowships, Books and authors, Diversity, Economics, Faculty, Health care, Humanities, Literature, languages and writing, Linguistics, Comparative Media Studies/Writing, Music, Philosophy, Political science, Race and gender, Research, Security studies and military, Social sciences, SHASS, Global Studies and Languages

Back to the top