In response to news that Howard University is disbanding its Classics Department, Cornell West reminds us that Frederick Douglas and the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. were inspired and nurtured by the classics. West argues that the attack on the classics is an attack on the soul and symptom the moral and spiritual rot of American culture.
Hong Kong democracy was always a project rather than a reality. But the movement for democracy in Hong Kong had been gaining steam for a decade. With the unanimous vote by the Chinese National People’s Congress this week, the hope for democracy in Hong Kong has gone up in smoke. The increasingly totalitarian Chinese Communist Party is solidifying rule at home and mobilizing its people for a long-term confrontation with the West, especially with the United States.
I have joined The Academic Freedom Alliance (AFA) as a founding member. The AFA “is a non-profit organization whose members are dedicated to protecting the rights of faculty members at colleges and universities to speak, instruct, and publish without fear of sanction or punishment. We uphold the principles that are required if scholars are to fulfill their vocation as truth-seekers..."
There are simply too many accepted truths that are not true. Two recent essays make the case that the Press needs to do better at avoiding making false claims, claims that then come to be accepted as verities. Holman Jenkins Jr. writes that Musicologist Ted Gioia “may be on to something when he says that after 9/11, the long reign of cool had ended, the reign of hot had begun.”