Norman Ornstein is an American Enterprise Institute scholar and keen observer of the American political system. In his last two books, co-authored with Thomas Mann, Ornstein takes us on a historical journey to identify the roots of decline in the quality of Congressional governance, illustrates how the “politics of extremism” was born and how its growth was allowed to continue unfettered for decades until it created the political environment ripe for producing a president like no other.
As a result of a Peace Corps stint in Botswana, empathy with the plight of farmers took hold early in Jack Kloppenburg’s life, as well as an appreciation of locally-produced food, and led to a lifelong study of plant breeding and seed production and to a strong commitment to promoting local, sustainable food systems.
In David Morris’ influential book, “The Evil Hours: A Biography of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder,” the former infantry officer turned journalist embedded with U.S. military forces during the Iraqi War relives his struggle for survival in an attempt to understand and recover from the debilitating mental injury known as PTSD, so that others can understand and get help.
As a journalist, Parenti has reported extensively from Afghanistan, Iraq, and various parts of Africa, Asia, and Latin America. In addition to The Nation, Parenti’s articles have appeared in Fortune, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Middle East Report, London Review of Books, and Mother Jones.
So you think you know the “Frankenstein” story? If you haven’t read Mary Shelley’s 1818 novel, think again. And if you wish to experience this treasure trove of evocative ideas, now would be a good time, as Washington University’s Class of 2021 embarks on a journey to delve into the rich and complex dystopian tapestry this teenager wrote so eloquently about, and in doing so, contemplate how eerily similar some of the questions she raised 200 years ago still haunt us today.