“Beyond Boundaries”

Tulasi Srinivas

“The time is coming fast when the whole world will gather here.” Sathya Sai Baba

From the Editors

Joseph E. Davis and Jennifer L. Geddes

Thinking more deeply about how we can inhabit the public sphere with others.

American Culture Facing China’s Rise

Jeffrey C. Alexander and Hans Andersson

How America has long viewed China exerts no small influence on which path Washington will follow in its material and cultural relations with the People’s Republic. 

The Language Deficit

From the Editors

An Modern Language Association (MLA) study calling for curricular reform that addresses the need for increased language instruction and incorporates cultural and historical reflection. 

On Frank Speech

Matthew B. Crawford

The role of frank speech in democratic culture is something worth considering, especially in light of the renewed ferment over political correctness.

Cosmopolitanism vs. Provincialism

Nancy Isenberg and Andrew Burstein

American politics thrives on exploiting confusion about real and perceived interests, whether those interests are tied to region or class, or both.

The Ideology of Anti-Ideology

Donald Dewey

We have harbored an ideology expressive of all-inclusiveness—one referred to with deceptive informality as the “American way of life.”

Shame, and “Those” Monuments

James McWilliams

The image moved me: Robert E. Lee, that icon of the Confederacy, whose likeness in bronze once towered several stories over New Orleans, was, after 132 years, gone, relegated (for now) to municipal storage.

Does Religious Pluralism Require Secularism?

Jennifer L. Geddes

What emerges in the essays in this issue is actually not one secularism, but rather a range of secularisms—French, American, Indian, and others— that can be compared, evaluated, and improved upon.

The Roots of the Arab Spring

Joseph E. Davis

While structures of power may change quickly, the building of a new social order is a longer and more precarious process.

The American Dream

Joseph E. Davis

How the American Dream—hope in the future—competes in these times with a pervasive pessimism.