News

Monday, Jun 19, 2017
by Jamie Saxon & Danielle Alio, Office of Communications
From Petipa to Puccini to Shakespeare, classical works of dance, opera and theater are often adapted to contemporary times. This spring at Princeton, a rarely performed pantomime-ballet — “Within the Quota,” with music by American composer Cole Porter — was reimagined to reflect the current political climate. The original 1923 production responded to restrictive immigration quotas based on national origin that were enacted in 1921. Students of the Princeton University Ballet mounted the new production in Richardson Auditorium at Alexander Hall on Thursday, May 4. Porter’s music was performed live in a new arrangement prepared by Simon Morrison, professor of music, and the London-based Penguin Cafe, whose 10 members traveled to Princeton for the show. When he composed the score for “Within the Quota,” Porter was an ambitious young songsmith. He was deeply troubled by the Emergency Quota Act of 1921, which slashed immigration into the United States and established strict quotas based on the 1910 census to ensure an unchanging ethnic and religious population. Porter’s acerbic 16-minute pantomime-ballet, a series of duets in which an immigrant meets — and dances with — a series of American stereotypes from a New York heiress to a Hollywood starlet, tested the truth of America as a nation of immigrants.
Thursday, Jun 15, 2017
by Julian Zelizer & Sam Wang
One of the ongoing challenges in American politics is appealing to younger demographics - not simply through elections and voter turn-out but engaging young people with the political process. Today’s young people - and even some adults – find politics difficult to digest and unappealing, presenting challenges in the ways that Americans learn, interpret and analyze politics. Gabe Fleisher, a 15-year-old student in St. Louis, is looking to change that with his newsletter “Wake Up to Politics,” which is sent to 36,000 readers every morning. Our youngest guest to date, Fleshier discusses his newsletter and how to make politics appealing in this episode of Politics & Polls.
Thursday, Jun 15, 2017
by Morgan Kelly, Princeton Environmental Institute
The premise of "The Environmental Nexus,” a class which debuted in the spring semester at Princeton, is that the undergraduates of today will be left to deal with the future effects of the global environmental crisis, particularly climate change, the loss of biodiversity, and food and water shortages. These calamities are expected to peak around 2050 when the first-year students of 2017 are around 50 years old. Because every facet of the students’ lives will be touched by the environmental crisis, the unique structure of “Environmental Nexus” approaches the topic from distinct perspectives represented by the four Princeton faculty who co-teach the course.
Thursday, Jun 15, 2017
by B. Rose Kelly, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
Sir Angus Deaton testified June 8 before the U.S. Senate’s Joint Economic Committee on the economic aspects of the opioid epidemic. In his testimony, Deaton provided an overview of the study he published in 2015 with Anne Case, which was the first to detect a rise in all-cause mortality driven by deaths from drugs, alcohol and suicide among middle-aged Americans, especially those without a college degree. These “deaths of despair” — defined as suicides, deaths from alcoholic liver disease and deaths from illegal and legal drug overdoses — cannot be explained by the Great Recession or current unemployment rates, Deaton told committee members. Instead, the deaths are a response to prolonged economic conditions, social dysfunction and a loss of meaning in the interconnected worlds of work and family.
Wednesday, Jun 14, 2017
by Steven Runk, Lewis Center for the Arts
Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden today announced the appointment of Princeton University professor Tracy K. Smith as the Library’s 22nd Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry, for 2017-18. Smith is the Roger S. Berlind ’52 Professor in the Humanities and a professor of creative writing in the Lewis Center for the Arts. She will take up her duties in the fall, opening the Library of Congress’s annual literary season with a reading of her work at the Coolidge Auditorium. “It gives me great pleasure to appoint Tracy K. Smith, a poet of searching,” Hayden said. “Her work travels the world and takes on its voices; brings history and memory to life; calls on the power of literature as well as science, religion and pop culture. With directness and deftness, she contends with the heavens or plumbs our inner depths — all to better understand what makes us most human.”
Wednesday, Jun 14, 2017
by Lewis Center for the Arts
Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts and the Department of Music will celebrate the opening of the new Lewis Arts complex with a multi-day Festival of the Arts on October 5 through 8 on the Princeton campus. The Festival, which is open to the public, will feature dozens of concerts, plays, readings, dance performances, art exhibitions, multidisciplinary presentations, community workshops and site-specific events at venues across the campus, most of which will be free. The new multi-building arts complex along Alexander Street and University Place on the south edge of campus, adjacent to McCarter Theater, will take the arts at Princeton to even greater heights by significantly expanding the performance, rehearsal and teaching spaces for the arts in new state-of-the-art, purpose-built facilities.
Thursday, Jun 8, 2017
by Catherine Zandonella, Office of the Dean for Research
Rising seas are making flooding more common in coastal areas around the country. Now, a new collaborative study by researchers at Princeton and Rutgers universities finds that sea-level rise will boost the occurrence of moderate rather than severe flooding in some regions of the United States, while in other areas the reverse is true. The study found that along the southeastern coast, where severe flooding due to hurricanes is relatively frequent, cities such as Charleston, South Carolina, will see a disproportionate increase in moderate flooding. However, areas that have little history of severe flooding, such as Seattle, are likely to experience a greater uptick in the number of severe, or even historically unprecedented, floods. The study, published June 7 in the journal Environmental Research Letters, looked at how climate-driven sea-level rise is likely to amplify coastal flooding — which already costs municipalities along the East and Gulf coasts $27 billion annually — over the next 50 to 100 years.
Thursday, Jun 8, 2017
by Julian Zelizer & Sam Wang
Race remains a potent political force in America, as evidenced by the 2016 presidential election. Despite the progress that’s been made, race continues to infiltrate many areas of public policy from health care to education to employment. Professor Eddie Glaude from Princeton University joins this episode of Politics & Polls to discuss current race relations in America. Glaude, chair of the Center for African American Studies and William S. Todd Professor of Religion and African Studies at Princeton.
Friday, Jun 2, 2017
by Morgan Kelly, Princeton Environmental Institute
A group of Princeton University faculty and students experienced the burgeoning wind-power sector in person on May 3 during a visit to the Sherbino Mesa II Wind Farm in Ft. Stockton, Texas. Owned by BP, the wind farm consists of 58 operating wind turbines with a total power-generating peak capacity of 145 megawatts. Support for the trip was provided by the Princeton Environmental Institute and the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment. The Princeton visitors sought to understand the technical and financial aspects of wind power and to search for research projects that would be valuable to the industry. The wind-power industry, globally and in the United States, is several times larger than the solar-power industry, and both have been growing rapidly over the past decade.
Friday, Jun 2, 2017
by Pooja Makhijani, Office of Communications
Scientists have developed a new method to forecast the extent of sea ice in some regions of the Arctic up to 11 months in advance. The method, which incorporates information about ocean temperatures and focuses on regions rather than the entire Arctic Sea, could help in the planning of activities ranging from shipping to oil and gas extraction, fishing and tourism.

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