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Monthly Archive for July, 2012

The Washington Post today published my review of Carlin Romano’s America the Philosophical. Although I didn’t find the book all that satisfying, I do appreciate his effort to consider how intellectual life in America exceeds the boundaries that we try to set for it in academia.   Carlin Romano has a story to tell about […]

Some Summer Works

Just after Wesleyan’s Commencement, professors Lori Gruen (Philosophy and FGSS) and Kari Weil (COL) hosted another group of scholars whose multi-week residency is sponsored by the Animal Studies Institute. This field has been taking off internationally, and Wesleyan has been recognized as a place where some of the most interesting scholarship is being produced. Lori […]

Rob Rosenthal, Andrus Professor of Sociology and Provost, is a reluctant administrator. That’s often the best kind. When I asked him to help out by joining the university’s leadership group a couple of years ago, he was hesitant, in part because he was well into a book project. He and his son, Sam Rosenthal, were […]

Recently I’ve been reading early 20th century essays by Jane Addams, the dynamic activist, social reformer and anti-war crusader. Addams is best known as one of the founders of Hull House, a vital educational community center for civic engagement and neighborhood improvement in Chicago. Addams‘ was a powerful force for democratic change in America, and […]

Happy 4th of July!

I’ve been so impressed by the consistent links between education and freedom that run through American intellectual history. As we celebrate America’s birthday, let me share just two. The first is from Frederick Douglass, the great orator, and activist. Douglass often described the epiphany he experienced as a young slave: the realization that the path […]