the international scholar


Reactions to Donald Trump labelling news media “the enemy of the American people” from: 

  • David Axelrod, former adviser to President Barack Obama
  • Carl Bernstein, investigative journalist and author who covered the Watergate scandal and was the first to suspect that Nixon was involved
  • Gabriel Sherman, national affairs editor at New York magazine
  • Eliot A. Cohen, scholar of international affairs and former counselor in the United States Department of State
  • Jesse Berney, writer and activist
  • Andy Greenwald, writer and critic
  • David Evan McMullin, former CIA operations officer and independent candidate during the 2016 United States presidential election
These are the 19 agencies Trump would stop funding entirely
March 16, 2017.
By Kelly Parker, Dan Watson

Here’s a snapshot of the mission and history of the 19 independent agencies President Trump said he would stop funding entirely under his “budget blueprint.” Trump’s proposal also calls for deep cuts in other agencies and departments, including the Environmental Protection Agency and the State Department, and shifts federal resources to defense.

  • African Development Foundation
  • Appalachian Regional Commission
  • Chemical Safety Board 
  • Corporation for National and Community Service 
  • Corporation for Public Broadcasting 
  • Delta Regional Authority 
  • Denali Commission 
  • Institute of Museum and Library Services 
  • Inter-American Foundation 
  • U.S. Trade and Development Agency 
  • Legal Services Corporation 
  • National Endowment for the Arts 
  • National Endowment for the Humanities 
  • Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation 
  • Northern Border Regional Commission 
  • Overseas Private Investment Corporation 
  • U.S. Institute of Peace 
  • U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness 
  • Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars

1st picture – An Armenian woman kneeling beside a dead child in field “within sight of help and safety at Aleppo”, an Ottoman city.
2nd picture – Greek civilians mourn their dead relatives, Great Fire of Smyrna, 1922.

History behind these two pictures.

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the day where upwards of 1.5 million Armenians we massacred by Turkish soldiers. Armenians were slaughtered in a form of ethnic cleansing. The Armenian Genocide (x) also known as the Armenian Holocaust was the Ottoman government’s systematic extermination of its minority Armenian subjects inside their historic homeland, which lies within the territory constituting the present-day Republic of Turkey. The total number of people killed as a result has been estimated at between 800,000 to 1.5 million. Turkey, the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, denies the word genocide is an accurate term for the mass killings of Armenians that began under Ottoman rule in 1915. It points to the fact that up to 2.5 million Anatolian Muslims lost their lives during World War I and denies that atrocities against Armenian populations were part of an organized plan to eradicate the Armenians. It has in recent years been faced with repeated calls to recognize them as genocide. To date, twenty-three countries have officially recognized the mass killings as genocide, a view which is shared by most genocide scholars and historians.

The Greek genocide, part of which is known as the Pontic genocide, was the systematic ethnic cleansing of the Christian Ottoman Greek population from its historic homeland in Anatolia during World War I and its aftermath (1914–23).  Estimates for the death toll of Anatolian Greeks as a whole are significantly higher, a team of American researchers found in the early postwar period that the total number of Greeks killed may approach 900,000 people. The Allies of World War I condemned the Ottoman government-sponsored massacres as crimes against humanity. More recently, the International Association of Genocide Scholars passed a resolution in 2007 recognising the Ottoman campaign against Christian minorities of the Empire, including the Greeks, as genocide. Some other organisations have also passed resolutions recognising the campaign as a genocide, as have the parliaments of Greece, Cyprus, Sweden, Armenia, and The Netherlands. (x)

We were connected by religion, we were connected by land, we are connected by tragedy. May the souls of our ancestors find peace. May the tragedies find recognition, may people not repeat the same mistakes, may history teach us a lesson. Because these photographs don’t lie.
Magritte from A to Z

The Belgian painter, printmaker, sculptor, and filmmaker René Magritte (1898–1967) was one of the leading figures in the Surrealist movement, producing some of the most iconic images of the 20th century. His trademark flat, inexpressive manner, combining apparently mundane, everyday scenes with elements of the fantastic or erotic, created a disturbing, dreamlike atmosphere that is all his own. He remained faithful to Surrealism throughout his career and developed a vocabulary of symbols—floating rocks, bowler-hatted men carrying umbrellas, incongruous nudes, concealed or shrouded faces—that is among the most recognizable in modern painting. This book explores the full scope of Magritte’s work through the format of an A to Z, fully illustrated in color, with entries written by a range of international scholars. The entries under the letter A alone—Absence, Abstraction, Appropriation, Anonymity, Artifice, Automatism, and Automatic Writing—show how this approach reveals and explores the themes and motivations in this most enigmatic artist’s work.

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A Strickland Vintage Watches Calendar Girl is more than gorgeous. SVW Girls are rhapsodies of nature, making up an exclusive sorority of some of the brightest and most beautiful women in the world, as intrepid as they are captivating.

This week we’ll be sharing a little about the Girls and their off-camera adventures. Today is the goddess herself, Miss Hanna Cowart.

Miss Cowart is not content to sit idly by as the world revolves. An international model, photographer and scholar, she has created art in Seattle, New Orleans, New York, LA, Chicago, Cuba and most of Europe. She’s currently in Greece working on a three-month documentary project in conjunction with her New York University.  We’re hoping she’ll find time to create SVW calendar art for 2018.

Beauty and brains, gentlemen, beauty and brains.

North Korea expert: What we're seeing is 'the Cuban missile crisis in slow motion'

(North Korean leader Kim Jong Un receives applause as he guides the multiple-rocket launching drill of women’s sub-units under KPA Unit 851, in this undated photo released by North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) April 24, 2014.Reuters)

Tensions between the US and North Korea have reached historic levels, Robert Litwak at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars told the New York Times

After North Korea’s military parade in Pyongyang on Saturday, a failed missile test, and another potential test of a nuclear device experts say is ready to go, Litwak said the situation resembled “the Cuban missile crisis in slow motion,” referencing the peak of Cold war tensions in 1962 when the Soviet Union sent nuclear ballistic missiles to Cuba. 

Except, Litwak said, it’s not in slow motion anymore, given the US’s new approach to North Korea.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that “our policy of strategic patience has ended,” signaling a tougher stance toward South Korea’s volatile neighbor. On Monday, Vice President Mike Pence, speaking from the demilitarized zone between North Korea and South Korea, echoed Tillerson’s comments nearly verbatim.

Pence added that the US would stand by its “iron-clad alliance” with South Korea, saying that “all options are on the table to achieve the objectives and ensure the stability of the people of this country." 

President Donald Trump told CNN on Monday that North Korea has "got to behave.” The White House’s forceful response to North Korea camem after a New York Times report that found the US had been waging a covert cyber warfare operation against Pyongyang for at least 3 years. The report attributes North Korea’s high rate of failure with Russian-designed missiles to US meddling in the country’s missile software and networks.

Despite the country’s recent failed missile launch, “the big takeaway is that they’re taking this seriously," Jeffrey Lewis, a North Korea expert at the Middlebury Institute for International Studies at Monterey, told the Times. ”They’re trying to develop operational systems that might actually survive on the ground.“ 

NOW WATCH: Meet the MQ-25A Stingray — the US’s response to threats like China’s ‘carrier killers’

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The International Convention of Asian Scholars has selected Manduhai Buyandelger’s Tragic Spirits: Shamanism, Gender, and Memory in Contemporary Mongolia for their 2015 list of outstanding English-language books in the field of Asian anthropology.

Manduhai’s research is about the resurgence of shamanism after the end of Mongolia’s socialist government. Since shamanism had been forbidden and persecuted, new shamans had to reconnect with spirits who had been ignored or lost during the socialist period and try to piece together history and techniques.

She is an associate professor of anthropology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in America.

“…Magizoologist remain confused at the origins of the North American ‘Pukwudgie.’ Though resembling many members of the Homo Terrus family (which includes the Gigan, Troglodytae, Americanus, Himalayus, and, despite the protest of the International Collegium of Goblin Scholars, Cobalus families), the Pukwudgie exhibits a sort of magical power uncommon to other members of the species. Though far from purely malevolent, the Pukwudgie have a truly savage sense of humor and a set of social norms and conventions that have completely baffle Magianthropolgists. Friendly overtures to Puckwudgie individuals have been met with everything from scorn to outright violence for over three hundred years.

Those few Wizards and Witches that descend from Wampanoag tribe native to the North Eastern Region say that attempts to deal fairly with these mischievous denizens of the swamps and deep forests is an exercise in pointlessness. They claim that the Puckwudgie are, indeed, descended from the might Giants that once roamed North America, shaping the mountains and chasing the great mammoth herds that dwelled here. Unlike their European and Asian counterparts, these giants were largely a peaceful and benevolent race, and in the ancient days they were allies of the People of all Tribes. But as time went on, the Age of Great Things passed, and soon all the massive beasts that were once so common began to vanish. The fate of the great North American Giants differs depending on which tribe you talk to. Some say they went to sleep in land that had spawned them, becoming great hills and small mountains until the day would come when it was time for them to awake once more. [1] Other tribes are more practical in their assessment of the fate of the Giants, claiming they simply began to die out when their natural prey, the mammoths, began to go extinct and the world began to warm.

The Wampanoag Tribe, however, don’t believe that all the giants died or went into deep sleep. One giant, named Maushop, was a powerful sorcerer in his own right, and while he could do nothing to save himself, he could save his children. Maushop cast a powerful spell, which was meant to transfigure his children into smaller things, but Maushop miscalculated. His seven sons and seven daughters crumbled before his eyes, becoming 98 demonic Pukwudgie. Maushop, who had guided the tribes for centuries, told the Puckwudgie to live amongst the tribes, and look after them while they were gone. But in growing so small and breaking so thoroughly apart, the Puckwudgie had also become jealous and resentful. They hated that they had been made to change, they hated that they were now smaller than the humans, and they hated their father for making them that way. So the Puckwudgie became tricksters and demons, each a little crueler than the last. Eventually, a powerful witch named Squanit, who had learned much of her craft at the knee of Maushop, was forced to take steps, defeating the strongest of the Pukwudgie in combat and forcing them into sacred vows that they would no longer plague the Tribes.

This, the Native Wizards claim, was Squanit’s only folly, for while they were prevented from harming the tribes directly, the arrival of Europeans only stoked their savagery. They are still consumed with spite, and while much of their viciousness has been dulled over the centuries. their magical powers are still as sharp as ever. They can pass unseen, and create blinding mists, summon fire, and craft cunning illusions. Magizoologists working in the field in New England, and especially the Muggle state of Massachusetts are advised to avoid the little creatures whenever possible.”

-Magical Species of the American North East, by Hazel Goode, 2007.

[1] Some scholars of Native American History and Magical Practice claim that the famous Ghost Dance attempted in 1890 was a call to these slumbering Giants, as tribal sorcerers sought their aid in defeating further European encroachment. The violence with which this ceremony was put down and its participants dealt with by both Muggle and Wizarding authorities was supposedly a testament to the fear the magical community felt at the potential success at such a ritual…and some claim the MRD maintains the last remaining notes on how to complete the ritual somewhere in their Dark Files.

First social event of the academic quarter:

1. One professor drank at least three bottles of wine
2. One professor drank a bottle of wine then punched me three times in the harm exactly where I got my flu shot
3. A student took out cigarettes and two professors squealed, lunged for them, and went outside and smoked the rest of the pack
4. I got called an “international classics scholar” lol
5. One professor complained vehemently because there wasn’t enough lemon in the artichokes (it was a potluck so the professor who made the artichokes was offended)
6. Was okayed by department chair to haze the first year cohort
7. Walked in on a group of Ph.d. students reading a book about the Victorian fern mania
8. A screaming match ensued because our departmental Republican started spouting some anti-Middle Eastern bullshit
9. Got really rowdy (pretty much a shouting match) while discussing the use of the perfect tense in primary sequence indirect speech in Latin
10. Finally got kicked out of professor’s house
11. Saw an undergraduate girl projectile vomiting on the sidewalk while watching from the pub where we after-partied

Don’t ever let anyone tell you grad school isn’t fun.

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11-Year-Old Yemeni Girl Nada Al-Ahdal Flees Home to Avoid Forced Marriage: I’d Rather Kill Myself

A message from David S. Ferriero, the Archivist of the United States:

It is with great sadness that I share the passing of Dr. Allen Weinstein, Ninth Archivist of the United States, who died yesterday.

Professor Weinstein was sworn in as Archivist on February 16, 2005. The National Archives saw many major accomplishments under Weinstein’s leadership, including:

An increase in the annual appropriated budget for the National Archives from $318.7 million for fiscal year 2005 to $411.1 million for fiscal year 2008;

  • Restoration of public trust through the declassification and release of interagency agreements, an audit of purported reclassification activity, the return of previously withdrawn materials to public access, and the implementation of stringent new procedures to stem withdrawal of previously declassified and released records;
  • Establishment of the National Declassification Initiative to begin to address the very serious challenges regarding the policies, procedures, structure, and resources needed to create a more responsive and reliable executive branch-wide declassification program, particularly with respect to referrals of classified equities between executive branch agencies;
  • Inclusion of the once-private Nixon library into the National Archives system of Presidential libraries;
  • Expanding public outreach of the National Archives, in partnership with the Foundation for the National Archives, through the creation of the Digital Vaults and the Boeing Learning Center;
  • Creating, in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina, the “First Preservers” program which offers support and guidance to state archives and local records repositories to preserve vital records;
  • Continued growth of the Federal Records Center program.

Citing health reasons, Weinstein announced his resignation as Archivist in December 2008. Among numerous awards and fellowships, Weinstein has held two Senior Fulbright Lectureships; served as a Fellow of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the American Council of Learned Societies; and was a Commonwealth Fund Lecturer at the University of London.

In 1987, he delivered the Bicentennial Fourth of July Oration at Boston’s Faneuil Hall. Recognition for his international contributions include the United Nations Peace Medal in 1986; The Council of Europe’s Silver Medal in 1990 and 1996; and awards from the Presidents of Nicaragua and Romania for his efforts on behalf of democratization in those countries.

We offer our condolences to Professor Weinstein’s family and will forever remember with gratitude his dedication to the mission and employees of the National Archives.

The latest installment in Centipede Press’ Studies in the Horror Film series will focus on Guillermo del Toro’s The Devil’s Backbone and Pan’s Labyrinth.

Edited by Danel Olson, the book features in-depth interviews with del Toro and several members of the cast and crew from both films. It includes a preface from Pan’s Labyrinth star Ivana Baquero and an introduction by del Toro.

Pan’s Labyrinth and The Devil’s Backbone: Studies in the Horror Film will be published on May 10 through Centipede Press. The official synopsis is below.

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