In Defense of Clowning (as a development strategy, that is)

Make no mistake.  We do not study development at Oxford in order to help people.  The job of development studies scholars is to attack and dismantle the well-intentioned ideas of others who (naively) actually think they can help people. This week, in my history and politics course, we discussed Mahmood Mamdami’s Saviours and Survivors, which… Continue reading In Defense of Clowning (as a development strategy, that is)

The Face of Terrorism (Oxford and elsewhere)

Long before I came to Oxford, I had heard about Oxford’s notorious animal rights activists.  They epitomized the absolute extreme to which the movement had come: “they” broke into labs, harassed professors, and even committed acts of bombing and arson.  While there were many reason why my interviews for the Rhodes and Marshall were disasters,… Continue reading The Face of Terrorism (Oxford and elsewhere)

Giving Well

The ideas in this post were mostly bouncing around in my head at Christmastime, but with today being the one month anniversary of the quake in Haiti—and having just attended a panel on the international community’s response to said disaster—these things seemed suddenly relevant again. – – – – – The first proper summer job… Continue reading Giving Well