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Social Sciences News

World renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma (left) and University Professor Antonio Damasio engage in a spontaneous discussion about music's role in reducing personal pain and increasing joy. Photo by Steve Cohn.

Edge Effect

September 3, 2013

Strumming the cello strings with his thumb, American cellist and virtuoso Yo-Yo Ma played a simple, ascending chromatic scale. “What emotion is this?” he asked the audience at Cammilleri…

Welcome Incoming Faculty

September 3, 2013

USC Dornsife welcomed 19 new faculty members for the 2013-14 academic year. Hailing from universities around the world, this year’s group of scholars are some of the best and brightest in the nation, bringing with…

International relations alumna Pam Mizuno spent a week this May volunteering on coffee farms in Costa Rica, assisting with research relating to American leaf spot, a disease currently affecting coffee harvests in the country. Photo courtesy of Pam Mizuno.

Wake Up and Smell the Coffee

August 30, 2013

Volunteering at organic coffee farms in Costa Rica, Pam Mizuno rose with the sun each morning around 5 a.m. Once on her feet, Mizuno would slather on a thick layer of sunblock, coat herself in bug spray, then enjoy a hearty…

In addition to their research, the undergraduates had time for sightseeing in both countries. In Cairo, the group braved temperatures of nearly 120 degrees Fahrenheit to visit the Great Pyramid of Giza. They are shown here at stone blocks of the pyramid's base. Photo by Steven Weier.

Climbing to the Light

August 20, 2013

During a recent Problems Without Passports (PWP) course, eight international relations undergraduates saw firsthand a parliamentary democracy at work when an environmental demonstration meant to save Gezi Park in Istanbul,…

A holograph of Holocaust survivor Pinchas Gutter answers questions from USC students. Photo courtesy of the USC Viterbi School of Engineering.

Ageless Survivor

August 15, 2013

Holocaust survivor Pinchas Gutter wants to make sure that testimony from himself and others will help prevent future crimes against humanity by making the world aware of evil and the need to combat it. That’s why he…

Macarena Gómez-Barris studies representations of politics and culture in the wake of Chile's dictatorship under Gen. Augusto Pinochet through the lens of memories. Photo by John Livzey.

Shadows & Symbols

January 9, 2013

At Villa Grimaldi in Santiago, Chile, the majority of buildings that stood on the grounds between 1974 and 1977 have been demolished. There are no known photographs or historical registers that capture what transpired during…

G. Alexander Moore, professor of anthropology in USC Dornsife, explains why so many people got the Mayan calendar wrong.

Disappointed the World Didn’t End?

January 2, 2013

USC Dornsife’s G. Alexander Moore wasn’t surprised to wake up on Dec. 22. The professor of anthropology knew better. An expert on Mayan civilization and mythology, Moore said the much-hyped alleged Mayan…

USC Dornsife senior Alexander Fullman, a political science major, is the recipient of a coveted 2013 Marshall Scholarship to study in the United Kingdom. Photo by Dietmar Quistorf.

USC Dornsife Senior Named 2013 Marshall Scholar

November 20, 2012

USC Dornsife political science major Alexander Fullman has been awarded a Marshall Scholarship, one of the most coveted honors an American undergraduate can receive. He is planning to attend the University of Oxford next Fall…

Arie Kapteyn, professor of economics and founding director of the newly established USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research, begins his new post on Nov. 15. Photo by Pamela J. Johnson.

Dean Kay Appoints New Economics Professor and Director

November 8, 2012

USC Dornsife Dean Steve Kay has announced the appointment of Arie Kapteyn as professor of economics and founding director of the newly established USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research. The new center positions…

Robert English, the new director of USC Dornsife’s School of International Relations, has tales to tell about his overseas exploits. Photo by Dietmar Quistorf.

Front-row Seat to the World

November 8, 2012

There’s no learning experience quite like getting out of the classroom — especially when the focus is on global politics. For Robert English, incoming director of USC Dornsife’s School of International…