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“The Authority of Academics in a Time of Turbulence”

Research paper by Hahn P.

Indexed on: 23 Dec '18Published on: 10 Dec '18Published in: Diplomatic History



Abstract

One of the most compelling critiques of the impact of new technologies on modern culture and politics makes this observation: “When a population becomes distracted by trivia, when cultural life is redefined as a perpetual round of entertainments, when serious public conversation becomes a form of baby-talk, when, in short, a people become an audience and their public business a vaudeville act, then a nation finds itself at risk; culture-death is a clear possibility.”11 This critique seems apt for our contemporary world, given the ways the Internet has degraded public discourse, undermined the daily newspaper as a watchdog on the powerful, challenged the integrity of education, and dramatically shifted the trajectory of American presidential leadership.