burn rome burn



How the social sciences accommodate themselves to the conservative Anglo-American elite. To the right: one member of Yale’s Assholeapologist Department, in charge of a small North American factory for the promotion of “radical” and glittering (multiculti!) global identity politics. Sexy diverse people chanting in unison the refrain of the Consensus on the Immorality of Leftist Solidarity.  Enlightenment at last!: So many skin colors at our cocktail parties! So little dissensus on the rectitude of capitalism.

“…As a result, we find ourselves today in a most peculiar situation: the left and right have traded places, at least with respect to the sort of universalist rhetoric that can still stir the general public. Unable to go beyond the logic of identity politics, the disparate constituencies of the cultural left have ceded much political high ground to the right.

Today, here and there on the left, one hears a half-whispered recognition that, beyond necessary demands for racial representation, feminist principles, gay rights, and so on, some common ground must be found: in campaigns for more economic equality and against poverty, unemployment, ecological depredation, and educational erosion.

Ronald Reagan’s genius lay in his ability to demarcate common ground on the right. Unless it learns to speak its own language of commonality, the shards of the left will be condemned to their separate sectors, sometimes glittering, sometimes smashed, and mostly marginal.”

Todd Gitlin, Harper’s 1993

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