Wesleyan in the News

NewsWesleyan’s intellectually dynamic faculty, students, alumni, staff, and parents frequently serve as expert sources for national media. Others are noted for recent achievements and accolades. A sampling of recent media hits is below:

Kari Weil, University Professor of Letters, authors a commentary titled “How to read your dog’s mind” in Salon. “For the early 20th-century biologist/ethologist Jacob von Uexküll, the fact that all animals (humans included) have the capacity to be affected by things in their particular environment or world and to respond to them, is evidence that they (like humans) are subjects of their worlds and not merely objects in them. In other words, they are not simply machines reacting to stimuli in the way that Descartes suggested in the 17th century.” (Sept. 4)

Dr. Scott Gottlieb ’94, Hon. ’21 is mentioned in The Washington Post for leading a Washington Post Live talk on Sept. 23. Gottlieb served as the 23rd FDA Commissioner from 2017-2019. In his new book, Uncontrolled Spread: Why COVID-19 Crushed Us and How We Can Defeat the Next Pandemic, Gottlieb shares why the United States was so vulnerable against the coronavirus and how we can stop it from happening again. (Sept. 17)

In The Nation, Daniel Steinmetz-Jenkins, associate professor in the College of Social Studies, leads a conversation with Samuel Moyn about his new book Humane: How the United States Abandoned Peace and Reinvented War. “Humane warfare is a paradoxical idea with a long history. Essentially, the notion speaks of the attempt to make war less lethal and more ethical for the purpose of minimizing the suffering of soldiers and civilians, a concern that, by the 19th century, had grown on account of the carnage of industrialized and mechanized warfare,” he writes. (Sept. 16)

Theater major Willie Garson ’86, the actor best known for his role as Carrie Bradshaw’s best male friend, Stanford Blatch, in “Sex and the City,” has died at 57. He’s remembered in The New York Times.

Peter Rutland, Colin and Nancy Campbell Professor in Global Issues and Democratic Thought, co-authored an op-ed in The Hartford Courant titled “As the years since 9/11 have passed, we have forgotten why the attacks took place.” To form a fuller picture of 9/11, Rutland writes, “students must understand at least something about the conditions in the Middle East prior to the attack—frustrated Arab expectations, and a long history of U.S. backing oppressive regimes in the region.” (Sept. 11)

Justin Lacob ’02 shares his memory of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on MSN.com. “I was in my senior year at Wesleyan University in Connecticut and was just about to get ready for class when my housemates burst into my room to tell me that a plane just hit the World Trade Center. As a New Yorker, it was surreal, a punch to the gut moment of heartbreak, grief, outrage, anxiety, and sheer terror. This was a moment before widespread cell phones, before social media, and with telephone networks down across the world, our inability to get in touch with each other provided a whole other level of fear. At that moment, in those hours, before we knew what happened, my friends and housemates and I just had each other.” (Sept. 10)

In American Towns, Kaneza Schaal ’06 is mentioned for “exorcis[ing] the ghost of King Leopold II through a mytho-biographical performance” during the Crossing the Line arts festival in New York City Nov. 4-6. Building off Mark Twain’s King Leopold’s Soliloquy published in 1905, a fictional monologue written after Twain’s visit to Congo Free State, and Patrice Lumumba’s 1960 independence speech in Congo, Schaal “considers the residue of colonialism in our everyday lives.” (Sept. 15)

Yahoo! Finance explores the net worth of Lin-Manuel Miranda ’02, Hon. ’15. “By far, Miranda’s largest paycheck has come from ‘Hamilton: An American Musical.’ As one of the original cast members, not to mention the writer, composer and lyricist for the show, Miranda earned $6.4 million annually while starring as Alexander Hamilton on Broadway.” (Sept. 14)

In an op-ed published in Portside, Julia Boland ’20 discusses gerrymandering which carves up communities based only on the partisan inclinations of each household. “The public has an important role to play in pushing back against the practice, but it’s important to understand that recognizing unfair maps means considering more than just the shapes of their districts,” she writes.  (Sept. 19)

Wesleyan University is mentioned in The Hartford Courant for being ranked No. 17 for Best National Liberal Arts College by U.S. News and World Report. Wesleyan also was cited for being No. 14 for Best Value Schools; No. 1 for Best Colleges for Veterans; No. 48 Best Undergraduate Teaching; and No. 122 Top Performers on Social Mobility. (Sept. 13)

Wesleyan’s Creative Writing Specialization offered on Coursera is featured in The Herald as one of the “10 Best Writing Help Online Resources Every Student Must Know.” “If you aim to polish your creative writing and want to apply your skills professionally, Coursera has gathered a series of free courses from Wesleyan University. It is aimed at beginners with no prior experience, takes about 6 months to complete, and offers subtitles in 10 languages for overseas learners.” (Sept. 15)