Monthly Archives: January 2010

The Gathering Twilight, Part the First

In a review of Elena Gorokhova’s memoir of childhood in the Soviet Union, there’s a quote of her youthful realization about Communism: “The rules are simple…They lie to us, they know we know they’re lying, but they keep lying anyway, … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 9 Comments

Dragon Age

I finished a full run through Bioware’s Dragon Age. I’ve always liked Bioware’s approach to RPG design, and this is definitely their best to date. Not because of the setting, which is at times painfully generic or derivative. (The dwarven … Continue reading

Posted in Games and Gaming | Comments Off on Dragon Age

Bring Out the Dead?

BloggEd, a really excellent blog by a family who are all involved in higher education one way or the other, has been talking about William Pannapacker’s Chronicle of Higher Education column that advises potential doctoral students in the humanities to … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 7 Comments

The Bestest Native of All

Some readers will remember that I defended District 9 against some of the criticisms levelled against it. I don’t know that I’d do the same for Avatar, at least not its plot. My position on the film otherwise is pretty … Continue reading

Posted in Popular Culture | 5 Comments

Disposed to Propose

I’ve done a fair bit of judging proposals for grants over the years, and a recent experience doing so pushed me to finally assemble some notes and thoughts I’ve been collecting. These are specific to undergraduates: graduate and faculty proposals … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Africa, Politics | 2 Comments

The Problem of Organizations

This is an old idea, particularly in the branch of sociological thought that descends from Weber, but it really seems to me that the political problem of the 21st Century is not a problem of markets or capitalism, not of … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Politics | 3 Comments

Fantasy Bests

It’s a New Year, so I’m going to get back in gear on this blog, which I’ve had to leave a bit moribund for a while as I concentrated on some other things and did some travelling. Many entries to … Continue reading

Posted in Books, The Mixed-Up Bookshelves | 13 Comments