Humanities

Human beings have waged war or engaged in violent conflict with each other since ancient times, an observation that prompted a Member at the Institute to suggest in the course of a casual conversation that surely it was a waste of time 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...

By Dan Burt

A sign and eight low buildings pass
unnoticed in a field the size of Central
Park: a wall-flower by a college town.
Wandering its halls, one chair offices,
bare egg white walls, nothing stands out until
I...

On November 14, the Institute for Advanced Study announced the appointment of Robbert Dijkgraaf as its ninth Director, succeeding, as of July 1, 2012, Peter Goddard, who has served as Director since January 2004.

Below,...

Philosophers have always been interested in moral questions, but social scientists have generally been more reluctant to discuss morals and moralities. This is indeed a paradox since the questioning of the moral dimension of human life and social...

Historians today can hardly answer the question: when does history begin? Traditional boundaries between history, protohistory, and prehistory have been blurred if not completely erased by the rise of concepts such as “Big History” and “...

The Tunisian revolution of 2011 (al-thawra al-tunisiya) was the result of a series of protests and insurrectional demonstrations, which started in December 2010 and reached culmination on January 14, 2011, with the flight of Zine el-Abidine Ben...

Artist Paul Hodgson spent some time at the Institute as a Director’s Visitor last fall. He created the work he is pictured with at left (shown here in progress) in a studio on campus and gave the talk “Honest Doubt” to the Friends of the...

Reliquaries were designed as receptacles for tiny bundles of sacred stuff such as handfuls of dust, pebbles from Biblical sites in the Holy Land, tiny fragments of the hair, clothing, and even bone of those deemed to be saints and martyrs by the...