Monthly Lecture Archives

Scholarium Lectures

Scholarium hosts monthly free lectures online by scholars ranging across the humanities, social sciences, and beyond. Join us for engaging, insightful talks and discussion with speakers who have spent careers immersed in creative research and scholarship, and who are passionate about sharing their subject matter.

Past Lectures

July, 2021: Dr. Kate Stockly, “Spirit Tech: How Technology Is Transforming Spirituality”

Dr. Kate Stockly spoke in July to Scholarium about her recent book Spirit Tech: The Brave New World of Consciousness Hacking and Enlightenment Engineering, coauthored with Dr. Wesley Wildman of Boston University and the Center for Mind and Culture. Dr. Stockly’s lecture discussed the growing pursuit of — and opportunities for — technologically mediated spiritual experience, including neurofeedback, meditation apps, and magnetic brain stimulation. She tackled tough questions about the ethics of technology-assisted spirituality and the future of religion in Western countries, and fielded interesting questions about whether technology helps us to enhance our own spirituality or merely brings the “spiritual” down to the level of the mundane.

June, 2021: Dr. Connor Wood, “A Natural History of Music”

Dr. Connor Wood delivered Scholarium’s second lecture, “A Natural History of Music,” on June 17th, 20201. Dr. Wood surveyed the comparative study of music within an evolutionary and cultural framework. Drawing on recent debates in cognitive motor science, behavioral biology, anthropology, and even philosophy, he discussed the surprising similarities between the rhythmic abilities of humans and birds; the possible relationship between music and language; and the role of music in social life. The lecture culminated with a new proposal about the role that rhythm and dance may have played in human origins themselves.

May, 2021: Dr. Paul Cassell, “Between the Humanities and Sciences: Interdisciplinarity in Academia”

Dr. Paul Cassell, of Arizona State University, delivered our first lecture, “Between the Humanities and Sciences: Interdisciplinarity in Academia,” on May 20th, 2021. Dr. Cassell, an expert in systems theory, evolution, and the study of ritual, gave an account of the role of interdisciplinary research in his own scholarship and career at the intersection of religion and science, focusing in particular on the evolutionary neuroanthropology of UC-Berkeley scientist Terrence Deacon. 

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