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Steve ScarpaJune 13, 20227min
It was sitting in the peace of synagogue with his wife where Stephen Angle began to contemplate his personal relationship to Confucianism. Angle, Mansfield Freeman Professor of East Asian Studies and professor of philosophy, had spent his career studying the ancient philosophy, which emphasizes personal ethics and morality. He’d written multiple academic books on the subject. The roots of his interest went all the way back to high school with a fascinating class on non-Western cultures. Still, there had always been one small remove between the ideas and his own life. “I didn’t understand the Hebrew being chanted. Half of…

Steve ScarpaApril 18, 20226min
Connor Matteson ’23 was one of many students who took a gap year as a result of the global pandemic. “I wasn’t really sure what I was going to do with this time, but I knew that I didn’t necessarily want to be stuck in a dorm room taking online classes the whole time,” he said. While away from Wesleyan for a year, Matteson certainly took a different path from many of his peers – he went out and wrote a book. That book, titled The World As You’ll Live It, will be published by New Degree Press in September…

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Steve ScarpaMarch 25, 20226min
Author Amy Bloom’s home office overlooks a lovely section of Long Island Sound, with rocky islands in the distance, boats drifting by, and sunlight playing off the harbor. When the time comes to put pen to paper, she has a magnificent view from her window. The great view doesn’t make the work any easier. “The job is, you’ve got to go to the office. You have to sit in the chair. You’ve got to make the effort. These things don’t sprout by themselves. It’s not magic and it’s not the muse. The muse shows up when she will but my…

Rachel Wachman '24March 3, 20223min
Associate professor of Science in Society Anthony Ryan Hatch specializes in health systems, medical technology, and social inequalities. His recent paper, titled “The data will not save us: Afropessimism and racial antimatter in the COVID-19 pandemic,” published in Big Data and Society on Feb. 23, combines his areas of expertise in an analysis of disparities in racial health exacerbated by the pandemic. The paper begins with a staggering statistic: “According to the CDC Covid Data Tracker, 89,713 Black people have died from complications due to COVID-19, about 13.7% of total deaths (as of 2/11/22, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,…

Annie RoachFebruary 28, 20227min
In this continuing series, Annie Roach ’22 and Madi Mehta ’24 review alumni books and offer a selection for those in search of knowledge, insight, and inspiration. The volumes, sent to us by alumni, are forwarded to Olin Library as donations to the University’s collection and made available to the Wesleyan community. Lawrence Jackson ’90, Shelter: A Black Tale of Homeland, Baltimore (Graywolf Press, 2021) After accepting a teaching job at Johns Hopkins, professor of English and history Lawrence Jackson found himself doing something that many people experience in their adult life—returning home. But Jackson, who grew up in Baltimore,…

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Rachel Wachman '24February 17, 20222min
Royette Tavernier Dubar, assistant professor of psychology and director of the on-campus Sleep and Psychosocial Adjustment Laboratory, recently authored a commentary called “#NoJusticeNoSleep: Critical intersections of race-ethnicity, income, education, and social determinants in sleep health disparities,” published in Sleep Health on Feb. 1. Dubar’s work in #NoJusticeNoSleep examines the link between racial, ethnic, and socio-economic factors relating to inequality and how well people sleep. Her commentary uses the COVID-19 pandemic as a launching point for further exposing inequality in the United States and bringing it to the forefront of public discourse through social movements, with a new emphasis on health.…

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Steve ScarpaJanuary 3, 20226min
A recent Wesleyan study showed that seeking out social media for emotional succor during COVID-19 did not improve emotional well-being among emerging adult college students. The study, conducted by Royette Dubar, assistant professor of psychology; Nicole Watkins, postdoctoral fellow in psychology; and psychology major Grant Hill '20, MA '21 asked more than 600 emerging adults in college (18-to-29-year-olds) across the U.S. to complete two online surveys over a five-month period at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. “COVID has had significant implications for how we interact with other people and how we think about our well-being. What we are trying to understand…

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Annie RoachNovember 8, 20214min
In this continuing series, Annie Roach ’22, an English and Italian studies major from Northampton, Mass., reviews alumni books and offers a selection for those in search of knowledge, insight, and inspiration. The volumes, sent to us by alumni, are forwarded to Olin Library as donations to the University’s collection and made available to the Wesleyan community. Daniel de Visé ’89, King of the Blues: The Rise and Reign of B.B. King, the First Guitar Hero (Atlantic Monthly Press, 2021) In what is the first comprehensive biography of the legendary blues musician B.B. King, Daniel de Visé takes readers on…

Rachel Wachman '24November 1, 20211min
Reinhold Blumel, Charlotte Augusta Ayres Professor of Physics, recently co-authored a paper in Nature called “Power-optimal, stabilized entangling gate between trapped-ion qubits.” Yunseong Nam, one of the other co-authors, worked with Blumel as a graduate student. Blumel’s contributions to this paper stem from his connections to IonQ, a technology company for quantum computing. Nam is now the company’s chief theorist.

Rachel Wachman '24November 1, 20214min
Assistant Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences Raquel Bryant and Assistant Professor of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Teresita Padilla-Benavides are two women in STEM whose work has recently been highlighted in national science journals. Bryant, who will join the Wesleyan faculty in July 2022, co-wrote a paper titled “Microfossil and geochemical records reveal high-productivity paleoenvironments in the Cretaceous Western Interior Seaway during Oceanic Anoxic Event 2” that will be in the December volume of Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. Her work has also been featured as a Research Highlight in Nature Reviews Earth and Environment. Padilla-Benavides recently co-wrote an article titled “The…

Olivia DrakeNovember 1, 20211min
Adjunct Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies Helen Poulos recently co-authored three new papers: “Wildfire and topography drive woody plant diversity in a Sky Island mountain range in the Southwest USA,” published in Ecology and Evolution on Oct. 5. “Choked out: Battling invasive giant cane along the Rio Grande/ Bravo Borderlands,” published in River Research and Applications on Sept. 20. And “Mixed-severity wildfire as a driver of vegetation change in an Arizona Madrean Sky Island System, USA,” written alongside Michael Freiburger ’21 and published in Fire on Oct. 20. Poulos’s research focuses on plant distribution patterns as a result of the…

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Annie RoachOctober 15, 20213min
In this continuing series, Annie Roach ’22, an English and Italian studies major from Northampton, Mass., reviews alumni books and offers a selection for those in search of knowledge, insight, and inspiration. The volumes, sent to us by alumni, are forwarded to Olin Library as donations to the University’s collection and made available to the Wesleyan community. Scott Gottlieb '94, Uncontrolled Spread: Why COVID-19 Crushed Us and How We Can Defeat the Next Pandemic (Harper, 2021) Since March 2020, the news cycle has been riddled with despair, conflicting information, and false theories. Even with vaccines, social distancing, and masking, COVID-19…