Spring 2005


Social Construction of Empire


There is no flyer up to now.

We will upload the new flyer as soon as possible.


In the transition period the last mail which was sent by Scott:


    Hi everyone, Laurence and I are both on holidays in Asia, so I thought that I would give you all the link to the article which inspired our new research topic this semester, namely, the "social construction of empire." Ron Suskind's interview with a Bush aid is not as crazy as he makes it out to be. In fact, it contains an epistemological assumption that has revolutionized philosophy. The issue here is, how far can one push the 'sociology of knowledge.' The insights of Acid heads and anthropologists like Carlos Castenada seem to be saying that most of reality is socially constructed. How much of reality is socially created, and how much does America's foreign policy need to be adjusted to 'reality' outside its own?

    October 17, 2004

    New York Times MAGAZINE

    Without a Doubt


    In the summer of 2002, after I had written an article in Esquire that the White House didn't like about Bush's former communications director, Karen Hughes, I had a meeting with a senior adviser to Bush. He expressed the White House's displeasure, and then he told me something that at the time I didn't fully comprehend -- but which I now believe gets to the very heart of the Bush presidency.

    The aide said that guys like me were ''in what we call the reality-based community,'' which he defined as people who ''believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.'' I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. ''That's not the way the world really works anymore,'' he continued. ''We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.''

    If you want the full text check it out on the web. We will also attach some articles in a few weeks before our meeting.

    Scott Stelle