Smarty Pants

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Tune in every week to catch interviews with the liveliest voices from literature, the arts, sciences, history, and public affairs; reports on cutting-edge works in progress; long-form narratives; and compelling excerpts from new books. Produced and hosted by Stephanie Bastek.

Have suggestions for projects you’d like us to catch up on, or writers you want to hear from? Send us a note: podcast [at] theamericanscholar.org


Episode List:

Death in Papua New Guinea

Chronicling the disappearance of an entire language—and everything else that goes with it

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, January 22, 2021

Looking In, Looking Out

Artist Betty Yu turns the camera on her family

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, January 15, 2021

The Father of Art History

The man behind the great men of the Renaissance

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, January 08, 2021

A Solstice Send-Off

A Slavic folktale to tell around the holiday fire

by Stephanie Bastek | Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Pencil-Pushing Spies

The secret history of how Imperial Russia kept an eye on its Chinese neighbor

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, December 18, 2020

If I Only Had a Brain!

Inside the extraordinary minds of people who feel others’ emotions, hear hallucinations, and get lost in their own homes

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, December 11, 2020

I Will Not Make Any More Boring Podcasts

What John Baldessari’s conceptual art can teach us about life during the pandemic

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, December 04, 2020

Sitting Down With Witold Rybczynski

The writer and architect talks chairs

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, November 27, 2020

Four-Legged Friends

How the horse has carried us through history

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, November 20, 2020

The Ghosts of Nazi Germany

We’ve all but forgotten the frenzy of witch trials and wonder doctors of the postwar period—but why?

by Stephanie Bastek | Friday, November 13, 2020
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