Dicta

The home of “things said” by the National Association of Scholars.

Hannah Arendt, Between Future and Past

Edward R. Dougherty

Hannah Arendt envisioned the collapse of Western civilization. Are we living through it? How near to truth was her prediction?

Thinking Small in the Age of Greatness

Peter Wood

Universities seek micro-credentials as an alternative to traditional course studies; is that a problem? 

Can Reason Win?

NAS

The Summer 2018 issue of Academic Questions at a glance. 

Modern vs. Western Thought: Postmodern Subjectivism

William H. Young

William Young examines the impact of postmodern subjectivism on American higher education and public affairs.

Modern versus Western Thought: Self and Social Character

William H. Young

William Young examines the focus on subjective individualism which dominates modern psychology.

Chasing Eels

Peter Wood

The new book The Closing of the Liberal Mind helps us get a better grasp on the slippery modern academic Left. 

Academic Social Science and Postmodernism

William H. Young

William Young examines the influence of postmodernism on the social sciences.

Oh No Pomo: Further Proof of the Rejection of Postmodernism

Carol Iannone

Literature lovers are pushing back against indiscriminate veneration of the avant garde. 

Postmodernism: Does it Have Marxist or Historicist Origins?

George Seaver

Much more than Marxism, Historicism has influenced culture and politics and accounts for many of the ideologies and sentiments that emerge in academia today.

Postmodernism and Governance

William H. Young

William Young analyzes the impact of postmodern ideas on American political discourse.

Wall-Chart Wisdom

Peter Wood

Peter Wood praises vintage illustrated botany and zoology wall charts as reflecting an antidote for postmodern epistemological malaise.

Virtue and Western Civilization

William H. Young

William Young discusses the decline of virtue, once integral to the educational process in the Western tradition.

Lady Gaga Makes It to Harvard

Charlotte Allen

Charlotte Allen ponders the curious fascination academics seem to have with a popular singer. Perhaps it's connected to post-modernist theory?

Postmodern Science and Western Civilization

William H. Young

William Young assesses the impact of postmodern ideology on the natural sciences.

Postmodern Mesmerists and Western Civilization

William H. Young

Although the American Founders were not seduced by fashionable pseudo-science from France, William Young notes that contemporary academics have eagerly embraced it.

Factions and Western Civilization

William H. Young

William Young continues his series with an examination of factions, the "mortal diseases" which have plagued republican governments since antiquity.

Socially Constructed Mathematics -- That Will Make All the Difference!

George Leef

The University of North Carolina is hosting a professor from the University of Illinois who maintains that what “minority” students need if they’re going to understand math is for it to be presented as a “social construct.” This makes me think of the famous hoax by Alan Sokol — a published paper contending that gravity was a “social construct.” I don’t think this is a hoax, though.

Postmodern Philodoxers and Western Civilization

William H. Young

William Young examines the replacement of philosophy's pursuit of truth with philodoxy's denial of it.

Human Nature and Western Civilization

William H. Young

William H. Young begins a new occasional series of articles focused on Western Civilization and current academic issues with a discussion of human nature.

21st-Century Studies

Peter Wood

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s Center for 21st Century Studies is an example of the academic left recycling clichés and passing them off as modern.

Nouveau Relativism in Academe

Peter Wood

Further thoughts on the AAC&U’s praise of ‘perspective-taking.’

Domestic Faction in a Republic, Part III

George Seaver

In the United States today - education, media, law, family policy, and national security - deconstruction clashes with classical liberalism.

Virtus from the Ancient Republics to the Postmodern, Part IV

George Seaver

To what degree has postmodernism's influence on American education, media, corporations, law, families, and military eroded our concern for public virtue?

Virtus from the Ancient Republics to the Postmodern, Part II

George Seaver

Enlightenment thinkers concluded that the balance of power can recover its stability but that the loss of public virtue occurs slowly and is not recoverable.

Virtus from the Ancient Republics to the Postmodern, Part I

George Seaver

Public virtue in the ancient republics meant moral excellence necessary for political stability and achievement in government.

Baggage Claim at Williams

Ashley Thorne

Williams College will cancel classes to engage in "pomosexual" poetry performances, politicized art discussions, a "queering communities" panel, and "reclaiming New England's aboriginal history."

Mandatory Re-education for MN Teacher-Candidates?

Michael Krauss

Here's a nice discussion of a proposal from the University of Minnesota's College of Education that aspiring teachers there must repudiate the notion of "the American Dream" in order to obtain the recommendation for licensure required by the Minnesota Board of Teaching.   "The report advocates making race, class and gender politics the "overarching framework" for all teaching courses at the U. It calls for evaluating future teachers in both coursework and practice teaching based on their willingness to fall into ideological lockstep. The first step toward "cultural competence," says the task group, is for future teachers to recognize -- and confess -- their own bigotry." No, this is NOT from The Onion.

B School Postmodernism: A Gambler's Education

Peter Wood

The financial crisis traces its roots to postmodernist "value-creating" and removal from reality.

Postmodern Immunity

George Seaver

Deconstruction's toll on liberal education and the American university

Irresolute

Peter Wood

Peter Wood and Ashley Thorne ponder how NAS should ring in the new year.

Losing Altitude: Leftist Ideologies on the Decline

Peter Wood

People are less and less interested in topics like Marxism and deconstruction, but which new ideological trends are replacing the old?

Night Makes Right: Stanley Fish's Candelabra of Truth

Peter Wood

In his new book, Save the World on Your Own Time, Stanley Fish writes, "If you

Unwelcome

Ashley Thorne

Multicultural welcome receptions at California State University at Chico raise the question, "Do differences really define who we are?"

Never Bored

Peter Wood