4 thoughts on “Arguing the World

  1. This is an interesting subject for discussion. It is therefore unfortunate that the three people speaking are two explicit right-wingers (Wisse and Glazer) and the “liberal” war-monger Walzer. Some balance might have been nice.

  2. With a few exceptions, the story of the New York Intellectuals – as the film makes plain – is their political journey from left to right, in large measure driven by the Stalinist excesses of the ’30s and then the student excesses of the ’60s. That transition was what it was, this isn’t an occasion for a “balanced” panel.

  3. Does this mean that neo-cons really do exist after all? It is so confusing.
    Also, I’m a bit distressed that JSPS, which was hurt in the pocket book for its controversial Israel coverage, now has a deal with the Shalem Center. While I have no standing to complain — having failed to land any new grants myself when I was working at JSPS back in the day, and being unable to personally fill five-figure holes in the organization’s budget — it is a bit distressing.
    At the least, it appears to be another example of the right-wing advancing arguments and positions with their purse that they can’t succeed in advancing in the court of public arena or fair debate. The Shalem Center’s Michael Oren has been loudly praising Bush and the Iraq war, of late. Ruth Wisse’s Yiddishist credentials should not obscure her long association with the Americans for a Save Israel, founded to oppose all Land for Peace proposals (they lobbied against the Camp David accords with Egypt). Historically — and this includes not only my JSPS time on the ’80s, but the current-day JSPS that I read in New Voices — JSPS has been closer to Leonard Fein than to Wisse, who attacked Fein and other American friends of Peace Now. I hope this appearance by Wisse reflects her willingness to embrace a broad coalition of American Zionists and Jews, rather than a capitulation by JSPS. And I hope that some who show up to hear Wisse challenge her on her history of troubling rhetoric.

  4. As an organizer of this event–along with Ilana Sichel and Sarah Braunstein–we really urge you to come and challenge the speakers.
    The partnership with the Azure Student Journals Project and New Voices for this conference, for us, presents a unique opportunity to do precisely what these blogs posts don’t usually allow for: meaningful, real discussion across political lines.

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