University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

The Bat of Minerva is a regional cable interview show produced and directed by Peter Shea, who received his Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Minnesota and has worked as an instructor at Gustavus Adolphus College and Minnesota State University in Mankato.


On Thoughtful Lives

For about 15 years, the Bat of Minerva has featured thoughtful people–scholars, activists, artists, farmers–talking about their life journeys, trajectories, stumblings. From these conversations, hints emerge about the landscape of the academy and the world outside, the varieties of scholarly and thoughtful lives.  The interviews also communicate a strong sense of the energy or passion or even annoyance which keeps creative people thinking and working, year after year.

Related Links

Watch the Bat

The Bat airs at midnight between Saturday and Sunday on Minneapolis/Saint Paul regional channel 6, serving the Twin Cities metro area. Over the years, many IAS collaborators, fellows and guests have been interviewed and their conversations with Peter Shea can be viewed in their entirety. Also now available is an A to Z listing of all University of Minnesota faculty who have been interviewed on the Bat of Minerva.

Most Recent Interview

Available for download as audio, podcast video, or original

Peter Shea says: “My old friend Rosalie Wahl, who died recently, had to keep lots of her opinions to herself while she was on the Minnesota Supreme Court — afterwards, not so much. This interview comes from just after the first bombing of Iraq in 2003″.

Pick from the Archive

Roger Hart is a professor of History and Asian Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. He works in Chinese history and the history of science, specializing in the history of Chinese mathematics. He is currently working on an online sourcebook, “Early History of Linear Algebra: Chinese Sources,” and Western Learning” in Seventeenth-Century China: A Microhistorical Approach to World History.  Here, he’s interviewed during a visit to the University of Minnesota in November of 2007 to discuss the Global Middle Ages Project (G-MAP).

Available for download as video (123.8 MB) or as audio (.mp3 – 53.6 MB).