Bylines

Below are links to some recent bylines by Wesleyan University President Michael S. Roth.

September 30, 2022 - Los Angeles Review of Books
The Music of the Ordinary: On Stanley Cavell’s “Here and There”

Whether Cavell was writing about pain or narcissism, language or privacy, he gave the impression of someone finding his own voice, his own variations on classic texts. The Claim of Reason was based on his dissertation, and in his later work the topic of voice in philosophy would become more and more important to him. Some might say that eventually he came to enjoy the sound of his own voice more than was necessary. As for me — I liked the music. [ Read More ]

September 26, 2022 - Boston Globe
College mission: Encourage diverse views but protect democracy

We in higher education must energetically cultivate democratic values — including freedom of expression, rights to representation, and the protection of the vulnerable — at home on our campuses. And we must take a stand against the would-be strongmen who threaten these values in our country and beyond. As educators, we should encourage our students and colleagues to join us in fighting for basic democratic rights. And should that fight be lost in America and the capacity to reason together be rendered pointless (or even persecuted), what then becomes of a genuine education? The nature and mission of our colleges and universities will change fundamentally. That so many are demanding just that should be warning enough. [ Read More ]

September 16, 2022 - Inside Higher Ed
The 'Safe Enough' Campus, 2022

"A safe enough campus, though, isn’t just about prudent COVID policies—not just about balancing protection and freedom vis-à-vis the virus. “Safe enough” also means balancing protection and freedom with respect to living and learning with others," writes President Michael S. Roth '78. [ Read More ]

August 25, 2022 - Wall Street Journal
‘Empires of Ideas’ Review: Strong Nations, Strong Education

In “Empires of Ideas” William C. Kirby approaches the history of the research university by focusing on three settings: 19th-century Germany, 20th-century America and 21st-century China, providing case studies of institutions within each. Mr. Kirby is a distinguished Harvard historian of China with a long record of facilitating international cooperation in higher education, and in this timely book he makes a powerful argument about what it takes to be a leading university dedicated to the creation of new knowledge. [ Read More ]

June 1, 2022 - Inside Higher Ed
Higher Ed’s Role in a Culture War

We have often looked to schools and universities as places where inquiry and debate can take place without degenerating into pitched battles, but the words “culture war” are linked to higher education. [ Read More ]

Read older bylines here.