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Impact x2 Qais

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How can we work together to promote better cultural understanding worldwide?

Qais Akbar Omar (GRS’16), a graduate student in the Creative Writing Program, has published a much-praised memoir, A Fort of Nine Towers: An Afghan Family Story. He recalls how the violence and tumult of civil war jolted his family, who, despite losing relatives, their home, and possessions, continued to nurture his wish to attend a university.

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Explorations: A Video Series

Explorations is a video series introducing viewers to some of the most thought-provoking research and ideas generated by CAS professors. Whether you are curious about the discovery of planets outside our solar system or the complicated relationship between Americans and French society, you’ll find something new to explore.

  • In The Lab: Navigating with Grid Cells

    A two-part interview with Associate Director of BU’s Center for Memory and Brain Michael Hasselmo. In these videos, he discusses the function of “grid cells” and how they relate to spatial memory in the brains of rats. He then compares his lab’s findings with Israeli researchers doing similar studies with bats.


  • Exploring the Eurozone Crisis

    A three-part series of interviews with CAS professor Vivien Schmidt, Director of BU’s Center for the Study of Europe. She discusses the ongoing Eurozone Crisis, problems of leadership and democracy in the EU, and the effect and applications her research is finding overseas.


  • Discovering Alien Worlds

    Andrew West, Assistant Professor of Astronomy at BU’s College of Arts & Sciences, discusses his class, Alien Worlds, which explores the possibility of life on other planets.


  • Doomsday 2012?

    Bill Saturno, Assistant Professor of Archaeology at BU’s College of Arts & Sciences, discusses the Maya and the Doomsday 2012 myth. He explains why pop culture has gotten it wrong, falsely spreading the idea that the Maya believed the world would end in 2012.


  • He Who Controls the Past

    Bill Saturno, Assistant Professor of Archaeology at BU’s College of Arts & Sciences, discusses how Maya leaders used their culture’s intricate understanding of time to solidify their hold on power. Saturno’s excavations at Xultun have deepened our understanding of the Maya’s calendrical knowledge.


  • Were We Really So Innocent? Americans in Paris in the 1920s

    Brooke Blower, Assistant Professor of History at BU’s College of Arts & Sciences, discusses her recent book about Americans in Paris in the 1920s, titled Becoming Americans in Paris: Transatlantic Politics and Culture between the World Wars. In the book, she challenges Americans’ notion of ourselves as “innocents abroad” and describes a much more nuanced reality.


  • Why Do We Enjoy Horror Movies?

    Have you ever wondered why we enjoy watching movies meant to scare us? Aaron Garrett, a professor of philosophy in Boston University’s College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), explores the psychological underpinnings of this phenomenon.


  • Why Is Modeling a Bad Job?

    Ashley Mears, a BU College of Arts & Sciences sociology professor, discusses why fashion modeling is a “bad job.” She describes a pay structure where only a few at the very top make much money. A former model herself, Mears is the author of Pricing Beauty: the Making of a Fashion Model.


  • Your Brain on Bingo

    Professor of Psychology Alice Cronin-Golomb discusses Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases and the way visual cues affect patients’ abilities to follow the game of bingo. Cronin-Golomb’s research has improved the lives of thousands living with these diseases.


Faculty Accolades

At the College of Arts & Sciences at BU, our faculty includes Nobel Prize winners, Poets Laureate of the United States, National Book Award winners, Guggenheim Fellows, and a host of others recognized by their peers as leaders in their fields.

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