One can scarcely open a travel magazine or newspaper in these months in the thawing of U.S.-Cuba relations without finding something about the vibrant art scene in Havana — about the jazz clubs like La Zorra y el Cuervo and Jazz Café; about dancing to the rhythms of son; about … More >
How quickly things have evolved.
Three years ago this month, I was in Campeche, Mexico, participating in an international congress about the archaeology of the ancient Maya. And I was keeping an eye on the Supreme Court, waiting to write an op-ed that I hoped would be a celebration of an … More >
I set off on my first passage to India when I was 12 years old. My father had a Fulbright grant to teach at Madras Christian College, in Tambaram, southern India, and he decided to take our entire family with him for the year. I remember being told about my … More >
The most important economic historian ever to teach at U.C. Berkeley died last month: my old teacher David S. Landes taught at Berkeley starting in 1958 until Harvard lured him away until 1964.
From a student’s perspective, he was ideal: he knew more than you did, was eager to share, could … More >
Thomas Mann of the Brookings Institution and Norm Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute have a very nice op-ed this morning about America’s political dysfunction.
I, however, found it sad: their fantasy is for pressure to work in America’s interest to be directed toward Speaker of the House Boehner and Senate … More >
On July 19, 1848, the Seneca Falls Conference launched a challenge to US society: extend the revolution to encompass women, not just men.
The point was made in a provocative text, the “Declaration of Sentiments” drafted by Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Rhetorically, by using the Declaration of Independence as a model, the … More >
“Classic” books are few and far between but Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond is one of these rare classic books written during our lifetime. It aims to answer the question why the people of Eurasia fared better than people in other regions.
The explanation takes the reader through human … More >
But my guess is, many readers didn’t know his name a week ago– and some still don’t.
So let’s correct that. According to the Lloyd Harbor Historical Society, Jupiter Hammon was “America’s First Colonial Afro-American Published Poet”. Hammon was born and died in slavery, living from 1711 to after the American … More >
Governor Jeremy Stein of the St. Louis Federal Reserve gave a speech on February 7 called “Overheating in Credit Markets: Origins, Measurement, and Policy Responses.” Overheating is a term he uses to describe a credit market with low interest rates, lax lending standards, and high risk-taking by investors “reaching for yield.” The … More >