Friday, April 28, 2006

For no particular reason that I'm aware of, Amazon has put The Multiculturalism of Fear on a 15%-off sale, in case any readers have been eagerly waiting for a chance to snag a copy below cover price.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

These are a few of my favorite things.

Caffeine addiction and They Might Be Giants, in the same commercials. Disappointed not to have seen them yet.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Political theory, political science, and the American Academy of Arts & Sciences

Borrowing one of Brian Leiter's annual blog-posts for philosophy and law, a quick look at political theory and political science in the 2006 class of the AAAS.

Not many political scientists this year:

Nathaniel Beck, NYU
Michael Dawson, Chicago
Lee Epstein, Wash U
David Lake, UCSD
Keith Poole, UCSD
John Roemer, Yale

of whom only Roemer is a theorist.

(No political philosophers were among the philosophy inductees.) Last year there were nine inducted in political science, plus political philosopher Charles Larmore.

Looking through the overall list, it certainly includes most of the people it ought to among political theorists: among others, Barry, Josh Cohen, Dahl, Elshtain, Elster, Gutmann, Hardin, Holmes, Kateb, Mansbridge, Pateman, Pitkin, Rosenblum, Wolin. Dunn, Dworkin, MacIntyre, Nussbaum, Pocock, Skinner, Tuck, and Waldron are all on the list in various places (foreign members, history, philosophy, law.) But there are a few conspicuous absences among political theorists, along with one shocking one.

Conspicuous: Harvey Mansfield has never been inducted, nor Seyla Benhabib. Seniority matters a lot for the AAAS, so I won't start listing deserving people with PhDs from the 80s or 90s. But at the right level of seniority, Peter Euben is conspicuously missing, as is Michael Zuckert. (Hm. Other than the kind-of case of Galston, is Saxonhouse the only Straussian on the list? There's surely something strange there.) Philip Pettit is surely overdue, though his absence so far is understandable since little of his career has been spent in the U.S.

The shocking absence is Michael Walzer. That's truly an embarrassment for the selection process.

I don't know how that process works, but assume that current members nominate new ones. If it's commonplace (or even allowed) for people to nominate their departmental colleagues, maybe that has disadvantaged Walzer because he's spent so long at the Institute for Advanced Study? One way or another, I would hope that the oversight won't last much longer.

Update: It's been pointed out to me that William Connolly is missing, another serious omission; which reminded me to check for his colleague Richard Flathman, also inexplicably missing. I'd be interested in hearing further thoughts about oversights-- including in the other political science subfields.