Will technological progress continue to drive progress and economic prosperity or are our best innovations behind us? Northwestern University economics professors Robert J. Gordon and Joel Mokyr presented profoundly different outlooks for America’s economic future and the role of technological innovation in that future in this conversation moderated by Rutland Herald/Times Argus Editorial Editor and VHC board member David Moats.
Recorded at the Vermont Humanities Council’s Fall Conference 2017: “The Double-Edged Sword of Technology.”
Recent Fall Conference Videos
Are “We the People” Up to the Task?
Vermont HumanitiesOctober 11, 2021
In the United States, all power is derived from the people. While this sounds noble in theory, can we expect the American public to have the wits and self-control to meet the demands of climate change? Constitutional scholar Meg Mott explores the paradox of self-governance when the natural foundations of life itself are changing.
History in Hot Water: Climate Change and the Shipwrecks of Lake Champlain
Vermont HumanitiesNovember 4, 2021
Lake Champlain is home to hundreds of well-preserved shipwrecks that help tell the story of our region. But climate change is altering the lake’s underwater cultural heritage. Susan Evans McClure and Christopher Sabick from the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum consider the impact of historical objects changing before our eyes.
NPR’s Eric Westervelt on Bigger Fires, Hotter Days, and Drier Lands
Vermont HumanitiesNovember 1, 2021
NPR national correspondent Eric Westervelt describes how mega fires, excessive heat and widening drought all underscore how climate change is fueling the routinization of extreme weather, with consequences for all of us.
Puerto Rican climate justice leader Elizabeth Yeampierre has helped pass climate legislation at all levels, including New York’s progressive Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. In this talk she describes how intergenerational BIPOC activists are changing the landscape of national climate priorities by speaking up for themselves and their neighborhoods.
The Zone is Us: Sacrifice in the Space-Time of Climate Change
Vermont HumanitiesOctober 29, 2021
Gleaning from classical mythology, UVM professor Adrian Ivakhiv suggests three paths for navigating climate-related trauma: those of Chronos (science), of Aion (arts and humanities), and of Kairos (action without guarantee).
Author Bill McKibben shares how the humanities can help us understand climate change, the greatest crisis we’ve ever found ourselves in. From the biblical book of Job to the latest science fiction, literature gives us clues to how we might shrink ourselves and our society a little.
Get Thee to the Funnery founder Peter Gould and a panel of informed, passionate, articulate, and wise Shakespeare campers describe examining global warming and climate justice through their study of “Midsummer Night’s Dream.”