Keeping It Civil

Keeping It Civil is hosted by Henry Thomson and co-produced by the School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership and Arizona PBS. The podcast seeks answers to key questions about the future of American life with fast-paced interviews with scholars and intellectuals.

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Thursday Apr 13, 2023

Shep Melnick is the Thomas P. O’Neill, Jr. Professor of American Politics at Boston College and co-chair of the Harvard Program on Constitutional Government. Henry and Shep Melnick speak about the current crisis in America's higher education, Melnick's research on Title IX, the regulation of gender equality in higher education and Melnick's latest book. 

Thursday Mar 23, 2023

Jenna Storey is a senior fellow in the Social, Cultural and Constitutional Studies Department at the American Enterprise Institute. Henry and Jenna Storey speak about the crisis of modern liberal arts education, the restlessness of young college students and her plans for improving and reforming higher ed. 

Thursday Mar 09, 2023

Franciska Coleman is an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin Law School. In this episode we speak about assumptions encoded in words people choose to use and why many nations around the world signed a "covenant" that addresses hate speech yet the United States never did. Coleman also discusses, among other things, the social regulation of speech as an example of cancel culture or accountability culture and what these terms imply when used in reference to speech regulation. 

Thursday Feb 23, 2023

Heather Mac Donald is the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a New York Times bestselling author. In this episode Henry and Mac Donald discuss identity politics and why universities are not teaching students, among other things, how to think about ideas "in the abstract" in pursuit of evaluating neutral principles of free speech and government. They also talk about what Mac Donald thinks the role of university in society should be.

Friday Feb 10, 2023

Winston Marshall has had a long and successful career as a musician, most notably as a founding member of the popular folk rock band Mumford and Sons. He later made headlines by leaving the band due to his controversial political views. As Marshall embarked on a solo career, we take a look at the events that led to his departure and explore the motivations behind his positions. 

Thursday Jan 26, 2023

Bion Bartning is an entrepreneur and investor. He is also the founder of FAIR, the Foundation Against Intolerance and Racism. Bartning talks to Henry about what prompted him to start the Foundation and FAIR’s alternative diversity training and other mechanisms put in place as a response to racism and other ideologies.  

Thursday Jan 12, 2023

Join us as Henry speaks with Batya Ungar-Sargon about her new book Bad News: How Woke Media is Undermining Democracy. Ungar-Sargon talks about how the media is silencing the middle class of America and why the interests of the lower income population are not represented in D.C. We discuss hopefulness that comes from the "goodness of the American people" and how democracy is in good shape because of the people

Thursday Dec 08, 2022

In this episode Dr. Nichols, a hip-hop artist, public intellectual and academic, speaks with Henry about hip-hop as a form of public discussion and political activism, about the corrosive effect of social media on civil discourse and the legacy and influence of Bea Gaddy on Nichols' political views. 

Thursday Nov 10, 2022

Jane Kamensky talks about American identity in colonial time and at the time of the Revolution and whether we're equipping ourselves and our students with an understanding of the revolutionary era. Henry also discusses with Kamensky the binary of competing narratives of U.S. history and why we need to challenge it

Thursday Oct 27, 2022

Henry speaks to Eric Kaufmann about political demography, nationalism and a mixed-race population as a future majority in America. Kaufmann discusses the dangers of suppressing opposition to immigration and why repressive tolerance is a bad idea.


Keeping It Civil

What can future leaders learn from today’s most prominent scholars and commentators? Keeping It Civil is co-produced by the School of Economic Thought and Leadership and Arizona PBS. The podcast seeks answers to key questions about the future of American life with fast-paced interviews with scholars and intellectuals. Hosted by Joshua Sellers and Henry Thomson. 

About Joshua Sellers:

Joshua S. Sellers joined the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at ASU in 2017. He holds an Honors B.A. in political science and Afro-American and African studies from the University of Michigan, along with a J.D. and a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Chicago.  

About Henry Thomson:

Henry Thomson is an assistant professor of political science at Arizona State University's School of Politics and Global Studies. His research focuses on the political economy of authoritarianism and democratization.


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