The War of the Public Intellectuals: A Review of “Best of Enemies: Buckley vs. Vidal” (2015)

When and how did the polarization of political opinion become so mainstream in the US? When was acrimony institutionalized? When did it become acceptable to deny a political opponent’s right to exist, and to commit oneself to the destruction of one’s opponents? When was incivility validated? Why are personal attacks, smears, and character assassination legitimized […]

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This Does Not Represent the Views of the University

I know that I am not the first person to ask this, but when did universities start having “views”? When some professors indulge their rights to free speech or put academic freedom into practice, they can sometimes express views that some members of the public find controversial, distasteful, or reprehensible. In such cases, one frequently reads their […]

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Which States? Which Secrets? Secrets from Whom?

From the journal of the World Policy Institute comes “The Big Question“ for its Fall issue on Secrecy and Security. I have maintained a research interest in the area of the anthropology of secrecy, and understandings of power in connection with secrecy in both anthropological theory and in the work of Julian Assange and WikiLeaks (more to come […]

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Are You Afraid of the Digital Taleban?

In the latest in militainment news, Electronic Arts has bowed to pressure from military officials in the U.S. and UK–not that it wasn’t already predisposed to their sentiments–and to the overreaching complaints of family members of those who died killing Afghans, and removed mention of the Taleban from the upcoming release of “Medal of Honor.” […]

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