University Diaries
A professor of English describes American university life.
Aim: To change things.
Contact UD at: margaret-dot-soltan-at-gmail-dot-com

Read my book, TEACHING BEAUTY IN DeLILLO, WOOLF, AND MERRILL (Palgrave Macmillan; forthcoming), co-authored with Jennifer Green-Lewis. VISIT MY BRANCH CAMPUS AT INSIDE HIGHER ED

UD is...
"Salty." (Scott McLemee)
"Unvarnished." (Phi Beta Cons)
"Splendidly splenetic." (Culture Industry)
"Except for University Diaries, most academic blogs are tedious."
(Rate Your Students)
"I think of Soltan as the Maureen Dowd of the blogosphere,
except that Maureen Dowd is kind of a wrecking ball of a writer,
and Soltan isn't. For the life of me, I can't figure out her
politics, but she's pretty fabulous, so who gives a damn?"
(Tenured Radical)

Saturday, April 29, 2006

People Who Think You’re Stupid

Lots of stuff about blogs in a survey of new media in The Economist, which notes the rising fortunes of the sort of thing you’re reading now and the declining fortunes of newspapers. Like Andrew Sullivan and other commentators, The Economist suggests that “It’s about democratisation” -- the rise of the individual voice and of conversation.

Which is interestingly juxtaposed with a review of a new book in the same issue: Politics Lost: How American Democracy Was Trivialised by People Who Think You’re Stupid, by Joe Klein:

Today political professionals - consultants, pollsters, and admen - test out every phrase [a politician might utter]. The result is a veritable Hobson’s choice: the droning inanities of a John Kerry versus the scripted platitudes of a George Bush.