Political Science

The Networks of U.S. Governance

Anne-Marie Slaughter— Since I write a great deal about networks, interviewers often ask me about Donald Trump’s network, pointing out that he “certainly seems to understand how to use a political network” in a way that bypasses mainstream media and pundits. That’s a fair question, but one that also reveals

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The New Power of Popular Protest

Nathan Stoltzfus— The new administration’s condemnation of dissent and the arrogation of more and more power in the president’s hands have made street protest and its images more forceful. The president made his way to power by creating images of himself with broad brush strokes vague enough to appeal to

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Reports of the Russian-American Détente’s Demise Have Been Greatly Exaggerated

James Kirchick— On the highly peculiar relationship between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, a conventional wisdom appears to have taken hold: however friendly the two presidents appear towards one another now, their strong personalities are a recipe for geopolitical conflict down the road. Trump and Putin may have exchanged warm

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Why Should Speech Be Free?

Timothy Garton Ash— The fact that most states in the world have signed international treaties guaranteeing freedom of expression, and make such promises in their constitutions, does not answer the question: why should speech be free? As soon as we start trying to hold governments to their word, or debate

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Closing the Courthouse Doors to Challenges to the Trump Presidency

Erwin Chemerinsky— The first weeks of the Trump presidency demonstrate that the federal judiciary must be available as an essential check to enforce the Constitution. Already many lawsuits have been filed against President Trump and his administration, such as for violating the “emoluments clauses” of the Constitution, for the travel

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An International Women’s Day Reading List

Today is International Women’s Day, a day to honor the women who have fought for political and social equality around the world. But even as we celebrate the courage, creativity, and resolve of women, we recognize that equality has not been attained, and we must all work together to achieve

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William Shakespeare: Political Commentator

Peter Lake— It is, of course, notoriously difficult to say anything novel, or even arrestingly interesting, about Shakespeare. In fact, I never intended to write a book about Shakespeare at all. But I fell into a set of questions and interests that resulted in a book, if not simply by accident, then at

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Remembering the 1967 Six-Day War

Guy Laron— Are wars the result of accidents, compounded by misassessments, misunderstandings, and miscalculations? If this is true, there is no one to blame; according to this view, wars simply happen. But perhaps wars are born out of meticulous and willful planning by individuals and institutions that might benefit from war. If

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A Brief History of American Exceptionalism

Burton Mack— “American exceptionalism,” a term that is currently making the rounds among journalists, denotes those features of American self-understanding that distinguish it from other modern societies, especially European nation-states. Most of the features of note are characteristics familiar to most Americans with some sense of our history and the history of

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The Heart of the Abolitionist Movement

Manisha Sinha— Caricatured as unthinking, single-minded fanatics who caused a “needless war,” abolitionists are often compared unfavorably to political moderates and compromise-minded statesmen. Their resurrection as freedom fighters during the modern civil rights era has been relatively brief. It is often dismissed as neoabolitionist history. While a bland celebration of

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