The Institute Letter Spring 2012

The desire to discover distant, rare, and strange objects dominated twentieth-century astronomy, for which increasingly larger and more sensitive telescopes were constructed. 

The act of carrying out this objective has brought enormous—and...

Does war have a time? The idea of “wartime” is regularly invoked by scholars and policymakers, but the temporal element in warfare is rarely directly examined. I came to the Institute in 2007–08 intent on exploring the history of war’s impact on...

The mid-1950s saw the invention of a new, highly mythologized housing type, the bachelor pad, articulated most fully in the pages of Playboy and in films. The bachelor pad is an apartment for a single professional man, organized for...

Religious art of the late Middle Ages and Renaissance in Europe was marked by the creeping presence of the prosaic, the concrete, the familiar, the everyday. Vivid descriptions of furniture and clothes, local flora and landscapes, hometown...

A natural starting point for any attempt to know a past society is its histories—the texts with which its members recorded what had happened and was happening in their world. Many precious witnesses of this kind have survived from medieval Europe...

In 2003, the Supreme Court of the United States heard the case of Grutter v. Bollinger and upheld the right of the University of Michigan Law School to use race as a criterion for admissions. At the time, the majority speculated that in...

The Institute for Advanced Study’s Park City Mathematics Institute (PCMI) has run a summer program for secondary school mathematics teacher-leaders since 1994. About fifty nationally selected secondary mathematics teachers participate in the...