All posts by Mary Manjikian


Now That the ‘Evil Empire’ Is Back, So Is My Career

Last month I appeared as an expert analyst on four news shows and three radio shows. This is perhaps not unusual for someone whose specialty is foreign affairs, but what is unusual is that in each situation I was asked to talk about Russia.

I commented on the likelihood of terrorism at the Sochi Olympics, and later I commented on Russia’s intentions toward Ukraine. As a result, I found myself once again engaged with the questions that had formed the background of most of my graduate-school yea…


Why We Fear MOOCs

In a 2002 book the anthropologist David D. Gilmore explored our culture’s fascination with monsters. He noted that most monsters are a sort of hybrid. They defy simple explanation because they tend to straddle categories. They might be part human and part animal (like a werewolf) or part living and part dead (like a vampire). The monster is thus a mutated version of something we are already familiar with; it is both familiar and strange. It’s the monster’s amorphous nature that we find upsetti…