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Brian Smith | Staff PhotographerWes Moore, New York Times best-selling author of The Other Wes Moore, delivers Thursday’s morning lecture in the Amphitheater. Moore spoke about reform needed in the juvenile criminal justice system and how civic involvement can help steer children away from a lives of crime.

Moore: ‘We have no idea what type of jewels are sitting inside our juvenile justice system’

They came of age in the same neighborhood of the same city, both spent time in the juvenile criminal justice system, both had behavioral problems. They were both fatherless. But the two young men named Wes Moore would ultimately follow completely different paths — one became a Rhodes Scholar, a White House fellow and a decorated veteran. The other would spend life in prison for murder.

Wes Moore discovered his own name in a headline in The Baltimore Sun, referring to a suspect in a jewelry store murder. After the suspect was convicted, Moore wrote him a letter, asking the man why he committed the crime. What followed were many more letters, which turned into prison visits, which formed the basis of Moore’s book, The Other Wes Moore.

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Roxana Pop | Staff PhotographerNina Morrison, senior staff attorney at the Innocence Project, lectures Wednesday morning in the Amphitheater.

Morrison: DNA testing can free wrongfully convicted Americans

The process of exonerating an innocent person for a crime he or she didn’t commit is lengthy and arduous. But luckily for her clients, Nina Morrison isn’t a quitter.

Morrison spoke at Wednesday’s morning lecture, the third to speak this week on “Crime and Punishment.” She is a staff attorney at the Innocence Project and explained in her lecture how the organization uses DNA testing to prove innocence. Since 1992, the Innocence Project has freed 311 wrongfully convicted people from life in prison, including 18 people who were on death row, she said.

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Benjamin Hoste | Staff PhotographerJohn C. Jeffries, former dean of the University of Virginia School of Law, speaks about the U.S. criminal justice system and sentencing law Tuesday in the Amphitheater.

Jeffries: ‘Our gravest problem is how we treat the guilty’

As an academic who studies the U.S. criminal justice system, John C. Jeffries warned Tuesday’s Amphitheater audience that his lecture wouldn’t be a happy one. But after three decades of examination, he believes the end to what he calls the “incarceration epidemic” is finally in sight.

Jeffries, the David and Mary Harrison Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Virginia School of Law, gave the second morning lecture on Week Six’s theme, “Crime and Punishment.”

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Benjamin Hoste | Staff PhotographerU.S. Supreme Court associate justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg speaks to the audience in the Amphitheater during Monday’s morning lecture. Ginsburg has a Bachelor of Arts from Cornell University, attended Harvard Law School, and received her LL.B. (J.D.) from Columbia Law School.

Lawyers and opera: Supreme Court edition

In many ways, the Supreme Court is separate from the other two branches of the United States government: Members are appointed rather than elected, serve lifelong terms and are not allowed to fundraise — but perhaps one of the greatest distinctions dividing the court from Capitol Hill and the White House is its members’ love of opera.

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has appeared three times in the Washington National Opera; Justices Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy and Stephen Breyer have also made appearances. Though the justices may have their disagreements inside the court, their love of performance brings them together not just as colleagues, but also as friends.

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Brian Smith | Staff PhotographerPaula Kerger, president and CEO of PBS, delivers Friday’s morning lecture in the Amphitheater on how her organization can enable happiness to viewers by offering a variety of trustworthy programming.

Kerger: Television has potential to directly increase people’s happiness

Following the adventures of Bert, Ernie and Big Bird was an integral part of almost every American’s childhood.

But Paula Kerger wants people to know that there’s more to PBS than just Sesame Street.

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Roxana Pop | Staff PhotographerMarina Picciotto, Charles B.G. Murphy Chair in Psychiatry and professor of neurobiology and pharmacology at Yale University School of Medicine, speaks about the science of happiness Thursday morning in the Amphitheater.

Picciotto: Happiness comes from circumstances matching expectations

When John Lennon wrote “Happiness is a warm gun,” he probably didn’t mean that happiness was created by little neurons firing off in explosions of elation.
If Marina Picciotto had been there, she could have corrected him.

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Neurobiologist Picciotto says happiness hinges on managing expectations

Are you having a difficult time being happy at work, at home or even while on vacation? Marina R. Picciotto’s solution might be simpler than you’d think: Lower your expectations.

During her first-ever visit to Chautauqua, Picciotto will speak at 10:45 a.m. today in the Amphitheater about a neurological approach to the pursuit of happiness.

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Benjamin Hoste | Staff PhotographerCharles Murray, W.H. Brady Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute and author of Coming Apart and The Bell Curve, speaks Monday morning in the Amphitheater.

Murray: ‘A life well lived has transcendent value’

When talking about “The Pursuit of Happiness,” it becomes impossible to ignore the differences in happiness from one group of Americans to the next.
In Tuesday and Wednesday’s morning lectures, Robert Putnam and Charles Murray both argued that these differences depend on what social class a person is born into. Their solutions, however, are radically different.

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