• “If there were a single word that might be the academy’s proclamation it would be discovery.”

    - Sidney Harman
  • “The idea is to escape the rigidity of classic study.”

    - Sidney Harman
  • “A polymath is one who not only mastered one or several disciplines, but one who uniquely synthesized them, integrated them.”

    - Sidney Harman
  • "polymath n. a person of much or varied learning; a great scholar."

    - Oxford English Dictionary
  • "It's a place for free knowledge."

    - Adeel Mohammadi
  • Introducing the Academy
  • The Quadrants
  • The People of the Academy
  • The Academy and the Library
  • Harman Curriculum

Opening Fall 2016 Polymathic Pizza with Viet Thanh Nguyen


When: 5:00PM - 6:30PM
So what do 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, the Michael Richards debacle, and the election of Barak Obama all have in common? They are all momentous events in our country that can be... Read more
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When: 9:00AM - 5:00PM
Presented by the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West, USC Dornsife College, and the Sidney Harman Academy for Polymathic Study, this exciting conference... Read more
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When: 5:30PM - 7:00PM
"Don't stress over anything you can't change." – Mickey Mouse That’s easy for a mouse to say. What if the emotion you are feeling is actually determined by a gene and not... Read more
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When: 5:00PM - 7:00PM
The Academy for Polymathic Study guides its enquiries through four flexible pathways or Quadrants: (1) critical and integrative thinking; (2) study of the polymaths; (3) the... Read more
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When: 5:00PM - 6:30PM
The Harman Academy sometimes defines a polymath as “a person of much or varied learning; a great scholar.” Is this all there is to being a polymath? Someone who knows a lot... Read more
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Community  with Viet Thanh Nguyen, Associate Professor of English                

Tuesday, September 13, 2016 5p at the Harman Acadmey, DML 241

“To be capable of seeing things from multiple points of view, to be capable of being sympathetic, not just with our friends but with our enemies, is perhaps not enough to prevent wars or to change the world, but it is certainly necessary if we want those things to happen.”   --Viet Thanh Nguyen

How might the idea of community be understood within an integrative framework, or even as a viable feature of the polymathic life?  Professor Viet Thanh Nguyen helps us explore community as polymathic through a discussion of his recent Pulitzer Prize winning novel, The Sympathizer.  The story’s principle character is a Viet Cong spy, who under forced confession to another Vietnamese interrogator, provides the novel’s narrative arc.  Through his unnamed protagonist, Professor Nguyen articulates the historically silenced, albeit fractured and diverse, voices of the Vietnamese people concerning the Vietnam War and its aftermath.  Nguyen’s unique confessional literary formula allows for an unusual dialogue between and among the marginalized.  He artfully conveys through one voice, the varied feelings, memories, and historical interpretations of the war from Vietnamese points of view. Join Professor Nguyen in discussion of what community means for us today in our fractured and divided world.

to rsvp go to www.usc.edu/esvp and enter the code PIZZA0913

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