David Marchese interviews Tom Stoppard about the rising virus of antisemitism.
In the new issue of Salmagundi,Thomas Chatterton Williams, Margo Jefferson, Darryl Pinckney, John McWhorter, and Orlando Patterson debate “The Black Intellectual & The Condition of the Culture.”
Yascha Mounk discusses three recent instances in which individuals have been fired or punished for expressing opinions (or being thought to have expressed opinions) that were said to have been inconsistent with perceived pieties. Mounk looks deeply into these cases and shows that while the effort to use this political moment has good intentions and is rightfully seeking to root out racial injustice, overreactions that punish people...
Democracy is the rule of the people. Demagoguery is the people being led by a speaker who sparks and appeals to the people’s passions. Charles Sykes writes about a public hearing in Palm Beach, Florida in which citizens scream and yell at public health experts who argue that wearing masks should be required to help control the pandemic.
The linguist John McWhorter discusses debates amongst editors of the Merriam-Webster dictionary about the definition of racism. The classical dictionary definition is that racism is “a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race.”
Aliza Becker and Noah Schoen present a webinar, “The Synagogue Shooting: Pittsburghers Reflect on Antisemitism and Racism.” This presentation is part of the "Meanings of October 27th" oral history project that explores Jewish and non-Jewish Pittsburghers’ life histories and reflections on the October 27th, 2018 synagogue shooting at the Tree of Life building.
In the New York Review of Books, Sarah Churchwell discusses American fascism through a historical lens while reflecting on recent events. Churchwell highlights the fact that fascism in 2020 will not look like fascism in Europe in 1933, but also acknowledges the underlying causes of fascist movements, like racism.
Chris Lebron writes that while three medical associations now label racism to be a public health crisis, he has long spoken of “Racial Diminishment syndrome,” a disease that, if often deadly, “more commonly results in discomfort, inconvenience and the sort of pains that eventually go away but the memories of which do not.
Jonathan Chait tells the story of David Shor, a social democrat and a data analyst who worked for President Obama. But Shor, who worked for the data analysis firm Civis Analytics, was fired for tweeting a “short summary of a paper by Princeton professor Omar Wasow. The research compiled by Wasow analyzed public opinion in the 1960s, and found violent and nonviolent protest tactics had contradictory effects.