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The Sun Interview

The Sun Interview

Don’t Panic

Rebecca Priestley On Finding Hope Amid The Climate Crisis

I’m not talking about burning the system down. . . . I simply think that the things we can do to respond to climate change will also make the world a better place for most people.

By Dash Lewis May 2023
The Sun Interview

Speaking Of Tongues

Justin E.H. Smith On The Mysteries Of Language

This is an extremely creative and spontaneous moment for language. There are whole sociolects that you and I don’t even know about, because we’re too old or we don’t belong to the communities of people who have come up with them. Emoji are fascinating because they’re a return to the ideographic sources of a lot of writing.

By Finn Cohen April 2023
The Sun Interview

Losing Our Religion

Molly Worthen On The Modern Search For Meaning

It seems every year a new survey comes out in which the category of “no religious affiliation” grows larger and larger. A small portion of those people embrace the label atheist or agnostic, but the vast majority don’t, and some would say the phrase “spiritual but not religious” applies to them.

By Staci Kleinmaier March 2023
The Sun Interview

The Strong, Silent Type

Jaclyn A. Siegel On Masculinity And Male Body Image

Risak: How is the “masculine body” defined?

Siegel: In the U.S. we typically see a mesomorphic ideal: lean, muscular, and with a low body-fat percentage. This is persistent across the U.S. and common in LGBTQ+ communities in particular. Sexual-minority men are at elevated risk for eating disorders due in part to the lean ideal being perpetuated in their communities.

By Sam Risak February 2023
The Sun Interview

Unsheltered

Eric Tars On The Human Right To Housing

The Martin v. Boise decision stands for the very simple principle that punishing a homeless person for undertaking basic, life-sustaining activities like sleeping or sheltering themselves — when there’s no adequate alternative accessible to them — is cruel and unusual under the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution.

By Thacher Schmid January 2023
The Sun Interview

Out There

Seth Shostak On The Search For Extraterrestrial Intelligence

I doubt any aliens we might encounter are going to be biological. I think they’re all going to be machines.

By David Mahaffey December 2022
The Sun Interview

Under The Surface

Güven Güzeldere On The Mysteries Of Consciousness And Artificial Intelligence

Cohen: This summer, a Google engineer named Blake Lemoine caused controversy by disclosing a conversation with an AI called LaMDA, or “Language Model for Dialog Applications.” The conversation seemed to suggest this AI system had some awareness of itself, but the idea was dismissed by a number of people who work with such systems.

Güzeldere: It’s interesting that Google fired the guy who published that conversation. . . . People are saying, “Oh, it’s just a hack,” but it’s a very impressive hack. I think it will become a product that will be accepted by consumers.

By Finn Cohen November 2022
The Sun Interview

Invasion Of Privacy

Khiara M. Bridges On Poverty And Reproductive Justice

Three of the nine justices have publicly articulated their position that the Constitution does not contain a right to privacy — at least, when it comes to matters involving contraception. . . . And that’s just the three we know about.

By Feliz Moreno October 2022
The Sun Interview

All In The Family

Faith Friedlander On Adoption And Parenthood

Not every adopted adult needs the same thing, but I do think most adoptees, at some point in their lives, will want to look into their past. And someone in their birth family might come searching for them. With the Internet and readily available DNA tests, it’s not so easy to hide anymore.

By Mark Leviton September 2022
The Sun Interview

The Great Decline

Shanna Swan On The Worldwide Drop In Fertility

Frisch: You found about a 1 percent decline in sperm counts per year.

Swan: Yes, which would mean a 50 percent decline over fifty years. We’re actually seeing something a little steeper than that.

By Tracy Frisch August 2022
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