Now updated to reflect changes related to closing campus after spring break!
January 21, 2020
the post-factual era?
January 23, 2020
anti-intellectualism in recent centuries
reading: Jacoby, Susan. 2018. The Age of American Unreason in a Culture of Lies. Vintage Books. Introduction and Chapter One.
January 28, 2020
anti-intellectualism and the Enlightenment, the usual view
reading: Wernick, Robert. 1997. “Declaring an Open Season on the Wisdom of the Ages.” Smithsonian 28(2):72-80.
January 30, 2020
anti-intellectualism and the Enlightenment, another view
reading: Ryrie, Alec. 2019. Pages 1-31 in Unbelievers: An Emotional History of Doubt. Belknap Press.
February 4, 2020
anti-intellectualism in American history, populism
reading: Jacoby, Chapter Two.
February 6, 2020
candidate analysis due
reading: Karp, Matt. 2019. “Is this the Future Liberals Want?” Jacobin 35:52-63.
Featherstone, Liza. 2019. “Is Bernie ‘Trumpian’?” Jacobin 35:139-41.
February 11, 2020
reading: Goldberg, Jonah. 2018. “The Trumpian Era: The Perils of Populism.” Chapter Thirteen in The Suicide of the West: How the Rebirth of Tribalism, Populism, Nationalism, and Identity Politics is Destroying American Democracy. Crown Forum.
February 13, 2020
reading: Hofstadter, Richard. 1965. “The Paranoid Style in American Politics.” Chapter Three in The Paranoid Style in American Politics and Other Essays. Harvard University Press.
February 18, 2020
reading: Oliver, J. Eric and Thomas J. Wood. 2014. “Conspiracy Theories and the Paranoid Style(s) of Mass Opinion.” American Journal of Political Science 58(4):952-66.
February 20, 2020
reading: Aisch, Gregor, John Huang, and Cecilia Kang. 2016. “Dissecting the #PizzaGate Conspiracy Theories.” New York Times December 10.
Breland, Ali. 2019, “Why Are Right-Wing Conspiracies so Obsessed With Pedophilia?” Mother Jones July/August.
February 25, 2020
reading: Goldberg, Jonah. 2018. “Tribalism Today: Nationalism, Populism, and Identity Politics.” Chapter Ten in The Suicide of the West: How the Rebirth of Tribalism, Populism, Nationalism, and Identity Politics is Destroying American Democracy. Crown Forum.
February 27, 2020
reading: Jacoby, Chapter Five.
Gorman, Brandon and Charles Seguin. 2019. “What Conservatives Get Wrong About Cosmopolitans.” Washington Post July 27.
March 5, 2020
implausible conspiracy papers due
reading: Applebaum, Yoni. 2019. “How America Ends.” The Atlantic December.
March 10, 2020
hostility to academia from on and off campus
reading: French, David. 2019. “Courage Is the Cure for Political Correctness.” National Review August 20.
Kreighbaum, Andrew. 2019. “Rising GOP Senator Takes Aim at Higher Ed and ‘Elites.'” Inside Higher Ed July 30.
Krieighbaum, Andrew. 2019. “Persistent Partisan Breakdown on Higher Ed.” Inside Higher Ed August 20.
March 12, 2020
hostility to academia from on and off campus
reading: Maroja, Luana. 2019. “Self-Censorship on Campus Is Bad for Science.” The Atlantic May 28.
March 17 & 19
March 24 & 26
additional spring break
week of March 30 – April 4
counter culture, youth culture, celebrity culture
reading: Jacoby, Chapters Six and Seven
week of April 6-11
the postmodernist attack on science and reason
NB: just skim this first one, because it was published as a hoax. It doesn’t make any sense. Sokal, Alan D. 1996. “Transgressing the Boundaries: Towards a Transformative Hermeneutics of Quantum Gravity.” Social Text 46/47:217-52.
READ CLOSELY: Latour, Bruno. 2004. “Why Has Critique Run out of Steam? From Matters of Fact to Matters of Concern.” Critical Inquiry 30(2):25-48.
Butler, Ella. 2010. “God is in the Data: Epistemologies of Knowledge at the Creation Museum.” Ethnos: Journal of Anthropology 73(3):229-51.
week of April 13-18
the “grievance studies affair”
reading: Pluckrose, Helen, James A. Lindsay, and Peter Boghossion. 2018. “Academic Grievance Studies and the Corruption of Scholarship.” Areo October 2.
reading: Jacoby, Chapter Nine.
week of April 20-25
politicized science and the challenge to expertise
reading: Nichols, Tom. 2017. “Experts and Democracy.” Conclusion in The Death of Expertise: The Campaign against Established Knowledge and Why It Matters. Oxford University Press.
Jacoby, Chapter Eleven
week of April 27-30
video pleas for the life of the mind to be uploaded by 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 28
the Dunning-Kruger Effect in the age of coronavirus
reading: Dunning, David. 2014. “We are all Confident Idiots.” Pacific Standard October 27.
May 12, 2020
“one more thing” due via email at 11:00 a.m.