Nexus Conference 2016: What Will Save the World?

Sidney Blumenthal on the Crisis of Democracy

presented by Rob Riemen, Sidney Blumenthal

There’s always been this strain, par­tic­u­lar­ly in American pol­i­tics, a skep­ti­cism about politi­cians. We’re in one of these peri­ods where there is such skep­ti­cism, but it runs deep­er.

Sidney Blumenthal on Being Advisor to Hillary Clinton

presented by Rob Riemen, Sidney Blumenthal

I have known Hillary for almost thir­ty years. And I hope that when this con­fer­ence takes place, she’s been elect­ed pres­i­dent. We share com­mon val­ues, polit­i­cal val­ues. But also I think that these are deeply root­ed in our own per­son­al expe­ri­ences. And these val­ues we’ve defend­ed against all sorts of peo­ple who have used what­ev­er means that they could, many of them under­hand­ed, in order to try and destroy rep­u­ta­tions, attack peo­ple per­son­al­ly, to engage in what we’ve called the pol­i­tics of per­son­al destruc­tion, but for polit­i­cal advan­tage and gain.

Steven Pinker on Why Doom is not Inevitable

presented by Steven Pinker

I don’t think that any­thing will save the world in the sense of bring­ing Utopia to Earth. But I think the world could be improved, and that would be the ver­sion of the ques­tion that I’m very much inter­est­ed in.

Steven Pinker on Genetically Re-engineering Human Nature

presented by Steven Pinker

There are many changes to our insti­tu­tions and our norms and our ideas that can reduce or elim­i­nate the risks of nuclear war with­out what I con­sid­er a rather quixot­ic attempt to change the course of human evo­lu­tion.

Elif Şafak Makes a Case for Women’s Rights in the Middle East

presented by Elif Şafak

One of the pri­ma­ry ques­tions, or prob­lems as I see it, is this illu­sion” that same­ness will bring safe­ty. People start to think­ing that if we are sur­round­ed by sim­i­lar peo­ple, like-minded peo­ple, if we have com­mu­ni­ties based on same­ness, that will bring us safe­ty. That’s an illu­sion. That’s not the case at all.

Elif Şafak on Memory and Learning from the Past

presented by Elif Şafak

When I look at the signs today, I see a very strong trend back to what I call trib­al­ism, back to nation-states, nation­al­ism, reli­gios­i­ty, all those divi­sive forces that many intel­lec­tu­als in the 1940s, 50s, thought were going to dis­ap­pear grad­u­al­ly. That did not hap­pen.