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Submersion Journalism: Reporting in the Radical First Person from Harper’s Magazine, a collection of fifteen pieces from the magazine, is about to go on sale. One of my stories is in the book, published by the New Press, and tomorrow I’ll be on a panel at New York University called Undercover Reporting in an Age of P.R.
Others on the panel are Ted Conover, author of New Jack (winner of National Book Critics Circle Award); Jeff Sharlet, author of The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power; Bill Wasik, senior editor of Harper’s; and Brooke Kroeger, chair of the NYU Department of Journalism.
All are invited. The event will be held at NYU’s Journalism Department:? 20 Cooper Square (Bowery across from E 5th St.),? 6th floor. It starts at 6:30 P.M.
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
I recently spent a semester teaching writing at an elite liberal-arts college. At strategic points around the campus, in shades of yellow and green, banners displayed the following pair of texts. The first was attributed to the college’s founder, which dates it to the 1920s. The second was extracted from the latest version of the institution’s mission statement:
The paramount obligation of a college is to develop in its students the ability to think clearly and independently, and the ability to live confidently, courageously, and hopefully.
Let us take a moment to compare these texts. The first thing to observe about the older one is that it is a sentence. It expresses an idea by placing concepts in relation to one another within the kind of structure that we call a syntax. It is, moreover, highly wrought: a parallel structure underscored by repetition, five adverbs balanced two against three.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A naked man believed to be under the influence of LSD rammed his pickup truck into two police cars.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”