A Discussion with Peter Berkowitz

March 24, 2022 (Thursday) / 5:00 pm

Philo Halls, 4/F College Hall 

A Discussion with Peter Berkowitz

Peter Berkowitz

Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University

Presented by The Philomathean Society

Join The Philomathean Society for an in-person dicsussion with Peter Berkowitz, Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University. In 2019-2021, Berkowitz served as the Director of the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff, executive secretary of the department's Commission on Unalienable Rights, and senior adviser to the Secretary of State. He is a 2017 winner of the Bradley Prize. He studies and writes about, among other things, constitutional government, conservatism and progressivism in the United States, liberal education, national security and law, and Middle East politics.
 In addition to teaching regularly in the United States and Israel, Dr. Berkowitz has led seminars on the principles of freedom and the American constitutional tradition for students from Burma at the George W. Bush Presidential Center and for Korean students at Underwood International College at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea.

Dr. Berkowitz is the author of Constitutional Conservatism: Liberty, Self-Government, and Political Moderation (Hoover Institution Press, 2013); Israel and the Struggle over the International Laws of War (Hoover Institution Press, 2012); Virtue and the Making of Modern Liberalism (Princeton University Press, 1999); and Nietzsche: The Ethics of an Immoralist (Harvard University Press, 1995).

Sponsored by the Wolf Humanities Center.

The Philomathean Society of the University of Pennsylvania was founded in 1813. The Society has pursued its mission of learning outside the classroom in whatever ways struck its membership best; a common answer to the question “what is Philo?” is “whatever Philos want it to be.” Over the centuries it has maintained its student autonomy. Thus, Philos have at one time or another embarked on major works of scholarship (like producing the first English translation of the Rosetta Stone), advocated for the creation of the Comparative Literature, Religious Studies, and American Civilization departments, launched campus publications (the longest-lived of which is the Daily Pennsylvanian), and staged major dramatic productions (the Masque of the American Drama involved every undergraduate then enrolled at Penn).

Today the Society regularly organizes and hosts talks, lectures series, intimate professor teas, as well as poetry readings, film screenings, dramatic performances, art shows, debates, exhibits, and special classes. All efforts are run, planned, and organized completely by Philos. The Society’s flagship event is the Annual Oration, where Philo invites an public intellectual to speak to the public. Past Annual Orators have included Jane Goodall, Ayn Rand, the President of Haiti, Margaret Mead, Tony Auth, Hans Morgenthau, Jared Diamond, Judith Butler, Daniel Dennett, Salman Rushdie, Arthur Miller, and Richard Dawkins. Most of Philo’s events and activities take place in our historic Philomathean Hall. All events are free and open to the public.

Philo’s structure, activities, and future are determined by its undergraduate and graduate student membership. Members elect a Cabinet each semester led by a Moderator who, among other things, chairs Philo’s general meetings held on alternate Fridays at 8:30pm. Membership in Philo is eternal; it continues long past one’s time at the University.