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The Scholars’ Circle is a broadcast discussion that features a moderator and three top thinkers/scholars who tackle current events and systemic issues within the broader context of the deeper phenomena that drive and shape those events. For a half-hour, top scholars and practitioners try to make sense of what is occurring with humanity – politically, physically, economically, psychologically, sociologically, legally, communally and more. Where are we in the great scheme of things? How did we get here and what do these mean for the future of humanity?The Scholars’ Circle goes beyond current events to look at deeper trends and their causes, systemic and structural forces, and to explore possible solutions to the many issues facing humanity.
How is The Scholars’ Circle different from other broadcast programs? The Scholars’ Circle brings to the airwaves material that the public rarely hears together – knowledge producers and practitioners thinking out loud with each other in areas of their expertise in order to try to shed greater understanding to the big issues and choices before us. It focuses on bridging, rather than dividing, and on larger contexts and questions that underlie current events. The host, Maria Armoudian, is an author, a fellow at the Center for International Studies, a journalist, and a Ph.D. candidate in political science and international relations. She has worked directly in politics for more than fifteen years as a high level staffer in the California Legislature, a Commissioner in the City of Los Angeles and a board member for several nonprofit organizations. Her forthcoming book, Kill the Messenger: The Media’s Role in the Fate of the World (Prometheus Books) is a comprehensive look at how the media affect political outcomes such as genocide, war, peace, human rights, democratization, social change and environmental protection. As a journalist, she has written for a wide variety of publications, including the New York Times Syndicate, the Los Angeles Times Syndicate, The Los Angeles Daily News, Salon.Com, the Progressive, Inc., Alternet, Businessweek, Daily Variety, and many others.
The Scholars’ Circle seeks to connect the public to scholars and expose general audiences to the greater knowledge than they might obtain otherwise. It hopes that a high level of dialogue might deepen the public’s understanding about the issues facing us and hopes to counteract polarization that occurs on other outlets. The program offers voices, information and contexts that together are infrequently offered in most programs. Since the Scholars’ Circle began airing in early January (KPFK & WPRR), it has covered the following topics:
- The state of the media, the future of media and what it means for society
- Political Violence: What foments it? What quells it?
- Transformations in the Middle East and what they mean for the region and the rest of the world.
- Presidential power: Given the system and the constraints on presidents, how much should society expect from their president?