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What Makes Americans American? Why Origin Stories Require Negotiation

Origin stories are never simple, and this is as true for countries as it is for individuals, ideas, and cultures. That the term “nation-state,” which designates one of the primary building blocks of modern geopolitical order, is a compound word speaks to this complexity, and there are many reasons why scholars are unable to fully […]

Watch: Scientist Ainissa Ramirez on How Materials Shape Us

On April 22 the Kluge Center released a Kluge Book Conversation with materials scientist and writer Ainissa Ramirez, author of “The Alchemy of Us: How Humans and Matter Transformed One Another.” In it, Ramirez examines eight inventions that introduced major changes to the way people live. The Kluge Center’s Dan Turello interviewed Ramirez on her […]

Kluge Center Announces New Chairs in 2021

The John W. Kluge Center is pleased to announce four new Chairs beginning their time in residence in 2021. David Baron holds the Baruch S. Blumberg NASA/Library of Congress Chair in Astrobiology, Exploration, and Scientific Innovation. Baron is a journalist, author, and broadcaster who has worked as a science correspondent for National Public Radio and […]

Why Reforming Electoral Institutions Might Be the Best Way to Change Policymaking

On April 15, the John W. Kluge Center held its second event in the Our Common Purpose Series with Kluge Prize winner Danielle Allen. How Political Institutions Shape Outcomes and How We Might Reform Them convened a panel of experts on the ways that electoral decision-making systems can encourage some outcomes over others. They also […]

Our Common Purpose: Second Event Looks at Reforming Electoral Institutions

At any point in time we might look at our political institutions – Congress, the presidency, the courts, elections, etc. – and see them as static, impervious to change in the larger social or cultural environment. In fact, that perception is wrong. Our political institutions evolve just as the larger culture does. As the nation’s […]

Announcing a Single Consolidated Deadline for Our Endowed Fellowship Programs

The Kluge Center is pleased to announce that applications are now being accepted for our endowed fellowship programs at the Library of Congress. The Center offers residential fellowships to scholars and thought leaders to make use of the Library’s vast collections and digital resources. This year, four of our programs will have a new consolidated […]

Is Civic Media an Antidote to a Polarized World?

The concept of ‘civic media’ was discussed in academic circles before the rancorous political and media fights of the last few years. But only in the last few years, as polarization, disinformation, and the impact of social media have become central concerns in public life, has it become more broadly considered as a possible solution. […]

Is Civic Media the Solution to Trolls, Misinformation, and Abuse Online?

On March 11, the John W. Kluge Center held its first public event in the Our Common Purpose Series with Kluge Prize winner Danielle Allen. Using Civic Media to Build a Better Society brought experts on the use and misuse of media together to discuss the role of information in democratic society, the difficulties of […]