Around the Institute

Listen Longer 2/21: Oscars Edition

February 24, 2015  • Institute Contributor

The Academy Awards recognized some of Hollywood’s best this weekend, and in that spirit we talked about some of the biggest issues in entertainment on Aspen Institute Radio. The two-hour radio show airs every Saturday and Sunday on SiriusXM Insight (channel 121). Each episode will dive into the topics that inform the world around you. Here in our weekly Listen Longer posts, we’ll recap each episode and show you where you can read, watch, and listen to more. Don’t have SiriusXM? Try it free for a month here.

How Entertainment Shapes Racial & Cultural Attitudes

State of Race

Hip-Hop music, movies, YouTube videos, and television sitcoms and dramas bring current attitudes to the public consciousness nearly instantaneously. Sports and entertainment icons become role models for all youth, whether intentional or not. Actor, playwright, and Institute Trustee Anna Deavere Smith, author Thomas Chatterton Williams, “Hawaii Five-O” actor Brian Yang and MSNBC anchor José Díaz-Balart discussed race in media and pop culture at the 2013 Symposium on the State of Race in America. Watch the full conversation.

Check out more intriguing panels from State of Race, including:

The Future of Your TV


Television is changing, thanks to the proliferation of new digital technologies — smartphones, tablets, HD video over broadband; consumers’ rising demands for access to video programming anywhere and anytime; and the evolution of online video from niche service to thriving industry. We talked about these changes and divined what’s to come with Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter, Julius Genachowski, former chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, and Michael Lynton, CEO of Sony USA.

Looking for more of the inside scoop on the TV industry? Check these out.

Seven-time Emmy and Golden Globe Winner Alan Alda


“I think that good writing, or a good theatrical experience, ought to be an immersive experience that helps you go through what it’s like to be a human in a tough spot with other humans.” -Actor and advocate Alan Alda

Want to spend more time with the former M*A*S*H character Hawkeye? Watch our full conversation here

Acting Out


From co-founding Artists for a New South Africa, to working in failing schools to turn them around, actor and 2014 Aspen Institute Harman-Eisner Artist in Residence Alfre Woodard has played a role in making change as an activist artist. Woodard joins Damian Woetzel, executive director of the Aspen Institute Arts Program, in a conversation about her career and work as an artist on the front lines.

Watch live performances by Woodard on various stages of the Aspen Institute: