Category Archives: Annals of Contemporary History

March 2, 2012, 6:31 pm

In Case You Missed Rush Limbaugh Calling Georgetown Law Student Sandra Fluke A Slut

Here it is.

Watching Rush Limbaugh makes me think that the problem with the culture wars is that we on the feminist left spend too much of our energy protesting that we aren’t in a culture war and too little time getting our hands dirty fighting it.

Seriously, Republican Party:  you are going to tell *all* women who want and need access to birth control that they are “sluts” and still expect any woman to vote Republican? Do you expect the men who are in relationships with these women to vote Republican? Have you lost your freaking minds?

Well then, bring it on, boys. Just bring it on. I mean, even Ann Coulter uses birth control.

Addendum: Does anyone but me think it is odd that this obscene Rush Limbaugh clip is preceded by an ad for Disney’s Magic Kingdom?

November 29, 2011, 4:16 pm

This Will Be The Second Year In A Row….

We thought that the demise of law school was as likely as this.

…that I have had no requests for law or business school recommendations.  Zero. Between graduates who had taken a year or so off and students heading right into the chute, I used to average between 5 and 10 law and biz recs every fall.  Also popular for a while were public health degrees, master’s in social work and master’s in urban design programs.  But I have had no requests for those either. Applications for the Ph.D. have pretty much petered out, although interestingly, these are the only requests for recommendations I have received since spring 2009. Last year I had two grads go off immediately to American Studies programs, and I am starting to send off recommendations for another prospective Ph.D. candidate now. (more…)

November 13, 2011, 4:55 pm

On the Nature of Change in Higher Ed (Part II): Education and the New Economy

We return to guest blogger, historian and former Zenith provost Judith C. Brown.  Her full biography and Part I of this series can be viewed here.  Brown ended the first section of her essay by reflecting: “in the early 19th century, it was in the relative ‘backwater’ of the German universities as well as in the newer universities of Europe, where imagination and flexibility with regard to change were able to flourish, that we see the beginnings of the modern research university.”  She then asked: “Are we in that kind of turning point in American higher education?”  The answer is yes.

American higher education is at a major turning point. We are in the midst of enormous social, political, economic, and technological changes that are part of big long-term shifts in the economic and political position of the U.S. in the world, shifts that began several decades ago. While the U.S….

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September 10, 2011, 10:46 am

After 9/11 — What? A Historian Contemplates the Future of Memory

Commemorations of the 2001 attacks on New York and Washington, and of those murdered on a third plane brought down in western Pennsylvania, began long ago and will culminate tomorrow. Here at Tenured Radical we have promised you no commemoration. Other media have a grander scope than we do, and ours will be trivial by comparison, even though memories of that day occasionally cause us to tear up unexpectedly. We also believe that life can sometimes become so saturated with commemoration that as citizens we become besieged by memory and unable to recall what it is, exactly, we experienced.

September 11 2001 is perhaps as fine an example of the role of simultaneity in generating nationalism as Benedict Anderson, or any American Studies scholar teaching Anderson, could invent.  As I drove up to Northampton yesterday, where la famille Radical is spending the weekend, I was listening to an…

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September 6, 2011, 5:19 pm

Respecting Differences

Today’s guest blogger is my Zenith colleague, feminist philosopher, animal studies scholar and fellow tenured radical Lori Gruen.  I asked her to comment on the renewed interest, both virtual and real, in the relationship between humans and chimpanzees.

Two summer movies featuring “chimpanzees” (no actual chimpanzees were used in the production of either film) have really got folks talking about our primate cousins.  People seem to be both fascinated and frightened by the idea that scientists might create intelligence in other apes.  What’s interesting is that other apes are already intelligent without our manipulations — we just don’t know how to appreciate it because we’re too focused on our own cleverness.  Project Nim, a documentary by James Marsh, director of the acclaimed Man on a Wire, reveals the quirks inherent in cognition research with chimpanzees as well as …

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February 26, 2010, 3:41 pm

Annals of Contemporary History; or, Queering the Klan

Are you one of the sickos who cheered when Joseph Stack flew his plane into the federal building in Austin last week? Of course not. According to the Washington Post on February 22 2009, although most of us were horrified by this cruel and violent act, “his suicide mission has clearly tapped a vein of rage among anti-tax, anti-government extremists.”

The way they see it, ‘he did the ultimate flipping of the bird to the man,’ said JJ MacNab, a Maryland-based insurance analyst who is writing a book about tax protesters. ‘He stuck it to the man, and they love that.’

It is not surprising Stack would be portrayed as a hero on fringe Web sites such as, a forum for white supremacists. But admirers also are expressing their appreciation on mainstream sites such as Facebook, where a fan page supporting some of the things he said in his six-page manifesto had more than 2,000…

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