An Argument for the Importance of Org. Structure in the Rebellion in East Ukraine

They say your best ideas come in the shower, and while I doubt what follows is one of my best ideas, it did come in the shower last week. Earlier this year, Michigan’s own Yuri Zhukov gave a lecture titled “Trading Hard Hats for Combat…

Four Reasons to Fund Goofy-Sounding Social Science Projects

Earlier this week Representative Lamar Smith, a Republican from Texas, wrote this piece arguing for limiting NSF-funded research to only that which was “in the national interest”, the standard embraced by the, “original statute that created the National Science Foundation.” I…

Performance Legitimacy & Authoritarian Capitalism

Michael Ignatieff was on campus this week to give a lecture on “Human Rights and the Challenge of Authoritarian Capitalism”. It was a wonderful lecture, and in a luncheon with students beforehand he proved himself to be a thoughtful and…

Campus Rape & A Lower Drinking Age

Probably no matter what intellectual circles you tend to inhabit you’ve read something recently about rape culture, campus rape, or California’s new “Yes Means Yes” law. Of all the commentary these topics have provoked, Robby Soave’s post for Reason on Wednesday…

Finding a Voice & Casual Coherence in A Foreign Language

Long-time readers may know that, as part of the MA program I am on pace to complete this academic year, I am learning Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian. I suppose new readers know this now, too. Having covered the grammatical basics last year and…

Banking Bailouts, AIPAC, & Structural Power in American Politics

A fun thing about being a student at a large research university is that smart people come and give talks with some regularity, and these talks are free to attend. This week’s noteworthy iteration of that phenomenon was a presentation…

Place in Europe or Nesting Eastern Europeanism

How we name places is important – for proof look no further than the dispute between China and Japan over what to call those islands in the Pacific, or Greece’s refusal to accept Macedonian accession to NATO or the European Union so…

An Institutional Theory of Boring Youth

An Institutional Theory of Boring Youth

Back in April over at Slate (I say that as if this blog is also a place on the Internet which, ha, no), Rebecca Schuman published this article titled “The Sad Demise of Collegiate Fun”; then the most recent edition of The…

The Unfortunate Obfuscation of Verbal Shortcuts

Vox’s goal of “explaining the news” is laudable, and I’ve enjoyed and appreciated the pieces I’ve read so far. But I have one very specific nit to pick, which I’m going to unfairly use as emblematic of a larger issue…

The Moscow Show Trials and the Universal Human Experience

Yesterday I marveled at the human capacity for inside jokes – today is an occasion to marvel at the human capacity for uncoordinatedly arriving at universal conclusions. Through late high school and early college I had to read Arthur Koestler’s Darkness at…