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Does the President Matter? Arendt Center Fall Conference Lineup

The Hannah Arendt Center’s Fifth Annual Fall Conference will take place on September 21-22, 2012 at Olin Hall at Bard College. A mere five weeks before the upcoming presidential election, the topic could not be any more timely: DOES THE PRESIDENT MATTER? A CONFERENCE ON THE AMERICAN AGE OF POLITICAL DISREPAIR Click here to learn…Read more Does the President Matter? Arendt Center Fall Conference Lineup Posted on 29 June 2012 | 3:32 pm

Circumcision and Segregation

A German Court this week declared that circumcision is illegal. The court decided that the time immemorial Jewish law—the mark of a Jewish boy’s covenant with God—is an inhumane act that does “grievous bodily harm” to young Jews and Muslims (the case actually originated when the parents of a four-year-old Muslim boy had him circumcised).…Read more Circumcision and Segregation Posted on 29 June 2012 | 11:01 am

Arendt on Vacation

Arendt on the beach in California. Photo submitted by Margarita Federova. Posted on 28 June 2012 | 9:56 am

George Savile on Thinking

“Men who borrow their opinions can never repay their debts.” – George Savile, Marquess de Halifax Posted on 26 June 2012 | 12:41 pm

The Courage to Lead

Since our recent weekend read from Roberto Unger regarding the upcoming presidential election is generating so much discussion, we thought we would re-run this “Quote” of the week from Roger Berkowitz that was originally posted in February.  “The Courage to Lead” seemed an apt follow up . “Whoever entered the political realm had first to…Read more The Courage to Lead Posted on 25 June 2012 | 12:47 pm

Roberto Unger: A Wartime Economy Without a War

“Ouch.” With that simple yet evocative Facebook status update, I was led this week on a journey into my intellectual past. The link attached to the painful interjection led to a video by Roberto Mangabeira Unger. It is a provocative video titled “Beyond Obama.” It calls for progressives to work for the defeat of Presidential…Read more Roberto Unger: A Wartime Economy Without a War Posted on 22 June 2012 | 3:25 pm

The Library of Kostas Karpetas

The library of Kostas Karpetas (note the human figure in the center, the cover of Arendt’s The Human Condition.) Posted on 21 June 2012 | 1:34 pm

American Criminal Justice – Made in Texas (Part 1)

African Americans were imprisoned at roughly four times the rate of whites in the U.S. at the dawn of the civil rights era. Today it is seven times. How can we explain this persistent—indeed, widening—disparity in rates of incarceration? Are contemporary patterns of imprisonment merely the incidental byproduct of economic restructuring, intensive policing, and stiffer…Read more American Criminal Justice – Made in Texas (Part 1) Posted on 20 June 2012 | 9:25 am

The Crisis of European Politics

Greece voted on Sunday and the headline account shows that the right of center moderates won. This was presented as good news, for it means a continued embrace of the Euro and years more of austerity. But there are other lessons to glean from the Greek election. 1.  Extremism is rising quickly in Greece. As…Read more The Crisis of European Politics Posted on 19 June 2012 | 1:27 pm

Beirut’s Elyssar Project: Spatiality and Hegemony

Architecture is at the center of politics. We can see the truth of this statement amdist the controversy about post-war reconstruction of Beirut and the establishment of Solidere—the company created to redevelop the city. Reconstruction in Beirut does not mean simply the physical re-making and structuring of certain “sites of memory” scattered throughout the city.…Read more Beirut’s Elyssar Project: Spatiality and Hegemony Posted on 19 June 2012 | 12:47 pm