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Academic Insights for the Thinking World

  • Social Sciences


On language and defiance: a Q & A with Ilan Stavans

“The Trump Administration has taken down from the White House official website all references to Spanish. This to me is another symptom of its anti-globalist views.” We caught up with Ilan Stavans, Editor in Chief of Oxford Bibliographies in Latino Studies, to discuss his recent New York Times editorial, the use of the Spanish language in the United States, and why Spanish isn’t a foreign language in the US.

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It’s time to talk about power, part II

In the first installment, Miller challenged the popular trope that ‘checks and balances’ in American politics serves to limit power, protect liberty, or promote the balance between the interests of political minorities and majorities. The stark example of Donald J. Trump’s election, despite his loss of the majority vote and limited support within his own party, highlight just how out of touch this trope is.

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The changing meaning of tax avoidance

There are some economic terms that are fixed and immutable. Marginal cost will always be the addition to cost from an incremental increase in output, and average cost will never be anything other than total cost divided by output. Other terms have greater fluidity and evolve over time with developments in theory and practice. For this reason, compilation of the Dictionary is never finished and definitions are never final.

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Inter-professional practice: conflict and collaboration

The mission of the Association of Baccalaureate Program Directors is to promote excellence in the education of bachelor of social work students. Between 1 March and 5 March, 2017, over 600 social work educators and 120 students will gather in New Orleans for its annual conference. The theme of this year’s conference is, “BPD for the Future: Social Work Educations, Allied Professionals, and Students.”

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The Liberation Panther Movement and political activism

Scholars of protest and social movements argue that voicing a vocabulary of resistance, challenging taken-for-granted assumptions and mapping out how things could be different are as important a part of the revolution as building the barricades and engaging in armed struggle. They invest the audience with a sense of the possibilities for change and encourage them to contest age old inequities.

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Did Margaret Thatcher say that?

Margaret Thatcher, the first female Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, was a fearless leader who became of one of the most notable figures of 20th century British politics. She arguably had the greatest enduring influence of any of Britain’s post-war Prime Ministers. She is remembered for her extraordinary political impact, but also for her memorable turns of phrase.

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Trump versus Guterres; will the new president destroy the United Nations?

ith the exception of Hillary Clinton, few would have been more dismayed by Donald Trump’s surprise victory in the US presidential election than António Guterres, the former Portuguese prime minister who took over the UN Secretariat in January 2017. While Mr Trump spent his life on corporate jets and in gold-plated towers, Mr Guterres used to take time off to teach in Lisbon’s slums.

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SIPRI Yearbook Online

Women in war – what is being done?

Women experience conflicts differently to men, as victims of sexual violence, internally displaced persons, refugees, combatants, heads of households and political and peace activists. Their mobility and ability to protect themselves are often limited during and after conflict, while their ability to take part in peace processes is frequently restricted.

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“Nevertheless she persisted.”

This week we saw a male US senator silence his female colleague on the floor of the United States Senate. In theory, gender has nothing to do with the rules governing the conduct of US senators during a debate. The reality seems rather different.

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Facebook Cleanup: appearing professional on social media

Most students feel that they are in a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” situation. They worry about whether future employers might find an offending photo or post attached to their names. But many of them also worry about what happens if they have no social media pres­ence at all for their future employers to scrutinize and dissect. If they are completely absent from social media, this might seem suspicious, too

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The globalization of the Hollywood war film

For a long time, people in other countries had to watch American war films. Now they are making their own. In recent years, Russia and Germany have produced dueling filmic visions of their great contest on World War II’s Eastern Front. Paid for with about $30 million in state money, Stalingrad, directed by Feder Bondarchuk grossed around $50 million within weeks of hitting Russian screens in October, 2013.

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The poverty of American film

Some decades ago, British film scholar Laura Mulvey showed us that movies possessed a male gaze. That is, the viewer was assumed to be a man — a straight, white one — and films were created by men to entertain men like them.We’ve made some progress. Among this year’s Academy Award nominees are eighteen African Americans, five Asian Americans, and one native-born Hispanic American.

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What chocolate chip cookies can teach us about code [excerpt]

What is “code”? Although “code” can be applied to a variety of areas—including, but not limited to computer code, genetic code, and ethical code—each distinct type of code has an important similarity. Essentially, all code contains instructions that lead to an intended end. Philip E. Auerswald, author of The Code Economy, argues that code drives human history.

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ISP cover

Research interview approaches in International Relations

‘You do realise that they’ll talk differently to you because you’re British?’ I thought about this advice a lot. It came from a Zimbabwean who I met as I began research for my book about Zimbabwe’s International Relations. I planned to interview Zimbabweans to find out how they saw the world, and how they understood themselves in relation to it. There are many ways to conduct research interviews.

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Foreign Policy Analysis

Economic statecraft and the Donald

How will the Trump administration utilize economic statecraft and how will his approach be distinct from previous presidents? To answer these questions, we look to what we know about Trump’s stances and early actions on trade policy, sanctions, and foreign aid. For much of the early history of the republic, economic statecraft was the primary bargaining tool employed.

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