University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

Tuesday, October 15, 2013: The Heart of the Matter – A Discussion with the Provost

Available for download as audio or video.


Available for download as audio or video.

Karen Hanson, Provost of the University of Minnesota and Department of Philosophy
Geoffrey Hellman, Chair, Department of Philosophy, member, American Academy of Arts & Sciences
Kathryn Sikkink, McKnight Presidential Chair and Regents Professor, Department of Political Science, member, American Academy of Arts & Sciences
David O’Fallon, President, Minnesota Humanities Center

Chaired by Ann Waltner, Department of History and Director of the Institute for Advanced Study

A Report of the Academy of Arts & Sciences, Commission on the Humanities and Social Sciences


The report, presented to Congress by Commission co-chairs, Richard H. Brodhead, President of Duke University, and John Rowe, retired Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Exelon Corporation, looks at the vital role of the humanities and social sciences in preparing and sustaining Americans for the responsibility of productive citizenship in the United States and the world.

The Heart of the Matter focuses on five areas of concern—K-12 Education; Two- and Four-Year Colleges; Research; Cultural Institutions and Lifelong Learning; and International Security and Competitiveness—and makes recommendations to achieve three goals:

  • Educate Americans in the knowledge, skills, and understanding needed to thrive in a 21st century democracy
  • Foster an innovative, competitive, and strong society
  • Equip the nation for leadership in an interconnected world

The release of The Heart of the Matter launches a national conversation about the importance of the Humanities and Social Sciences to America’s future.

A short companion film, The Heart of the Matter, produced by Emmy® Award-winning filmmakers Ewers Brothers Productions also was released. Appearing in the film are producer, screenwriter, and director George Lucas, actor John Lithgow, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, and documentary filmmaker Ken Burns. View the film here.

This discussion occurred Tuesday, October 15, 4:00 pm, in 125 Nolte, and was originally scheduled for September.

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