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Archive for November 2011

Christian Anti-Semitism: The Unfinished Reckoning. A lecture by James Carroll.

Herman Allen "Hal" Israel Annual Lecture in Jewish-Catholic Relations.

Since the Holocaust, Christians have faced directly the tie between religious anti-Judaism and racial anti-Semitism. (World Council of Churches declarations, Vatican II, etc.), but that is the beginning of the reckoning, not the end. Texts remain problematic. Doctrines still breed contempt. More broadly, Christian anti-Semitism spawned a positive-negative bi-polarity that defined Western attitudes toward Jews - but also shaped thinking about colonized peoples, with ongoing implications for today's conflicts. The work of dismantling structures of anti-Semitism must continue.

James Carroll, one of the most adept and versatile writers on the American scene today (Denver Post), is the author of ten novels and six works of non-fiction, including the National Book Award winning An American Requiem; the New York Times bestselling Constantine's Sword, now an acclaimed documentary; House of War, which won the first PEN-Galbraith Award; Practicing Catholic, which Hans Kung calls "brilliantly written, passionate, and vivid." His most recent book is Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern World, published in Spring 2011. He lectures widely, both in the United States and abroad. James Carroll is Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence at Suffolk University in Boston, where he lives with his wife, the novelist Alexandra Marshall.

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John K. Yi graduated from from Georgetown University in _ with a graduate certificate in Asian Studies. Today he lives in Moscow, Russia where he works for Sberbank, the largest bank in Russia and Central Europe. John talked with Robert Lyons, the MA Coordinator for the Asian Studies program about his work and how Georgetown University helped prepare him for his job.

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This East Asia Weekly Review features Professor David Steinberg who discusses the decision to send Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Myanmar, formerly known as Burma. He says the decision was an important one that signals change in Myanmar. The East Asia Weekly Review is brought to you by the East Asia National Resource Center.

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MAGES’ Bryson Wins Rhodes

steffi.jpgWe've received terrific news from the Rhodes Trust. Stephanie Bryson -- a graduate SFS student pursuing the Master of Arts in German and European Studies (MAGES) -- has been named a Rhodes Scholar.

A Georgetown graduate student who says she struggled through high school and considered becoming a professional surfer instead of going to college has won a Rhodes scholarship to study at Oxford University.

Stephanie J. Bryson of San Diego, who is in the School of Foreign Service’s Master of Arts in German and European Studies (MAGES) at Georgetown, eventually changed her mind and went on to graduate summa cum laude from California State University, Long Beach, and was that university's valedictorian.

Having just begun her studies at Georgetown in the fall, she plans to finish the year in Washington and then defer the second year of her program while at Oxford.


Prior to coming to Georgetown, she spent a year at Berlin’s Humboldt University and interned at the U.S. mission to the European Union in Brussels. She also worked in the Wounded Warrior Project and for the Challenged Athletes Foundation.

“Stephanie is the kind of student and citizen we all admire,” says School of Foreign Dean Carol Lancaster, “not just an outstanding student but someone who has gained extensive broad and practical experience in her area of interest – European studies – as well as contributed to making her own society and community a better place. We are all proud of her being named a Rhodes scholar and wish her a great experience amongst the dreaming spires of Oxford University.”

Georgetown University has produced 23 Rhodes Scholars, including former U.S. President Bill Clinton (F'68).

John Gwin (F'12) was among four Georgetown University students named finalists.

Read the full story from Georgetown's Office of Communications or learn more about the winners.

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Prof. Lyle J. Goldstein is an associate professor in the Strategic Research Department of the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island, and is also director of the NWC's new China Maritime Studies Institute (CMSI), which was established in October 2006 to improve mutual understanding and maritime cooperation with China. Proficient in Chinese and Russian, Professor Goldstein has conducted extensive field research in both China and Russia. His research on Chinese defense policies, especially concerning naval development, has been published in China Quarterly, International Security, Jane's Intelligence Review, Journal of Strategic Studies, and U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings. Professor Goldstein's first book, which compared proliferation crises and focused particularly on Chinese nuclear strategy, was published by Stanford University Press in 2005. He is the co-editor of the United States Naval Institute books China’s New Nuclear Submarine Force (2007), China’s Energy Strategy: The Impact on Beijing’s Maritime Policies (2008) and China Goes to Sea: Maritime Transformation in a Comparative Historical Context (2009). The next book in this series is entitled Defining a Maritime Partnership with China (forthcoming 2010). Recently, his research focus has been on further development of China’s Coast Guard and related cooperation issues. He earned a PhD from Princeton University in 2001 and has an MA from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies. Dr. Goldstein has also worked in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

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Professor Victor Cha discusses the significance of President Obama's participation in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC) and the East Asia Summit (EAS) as well as the announcement of a U.S. troop deal with Australia.

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The first decade of the 21st century witnessed the emergence of a newly exuberant and dynamic American Muslim “feminist” activism. Reminiscent in some ways in its liveliness of the American feminist movement of the 1960s and 70s, this contemporary movement appears to be occurring above all among American Muslim women and thus in relation specifically to Islam. Outlining some of its most notable developments through this decade, Dr. Ahmed also described some of the historical and social conditions contributing to the emergence of this newly invigorated American Muslim “feminist” activism.


Leila Ahmed Victor S. Thomas Professor of Divinity, Harvard Divinity School

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SFS Associate Professor Abraham Newman wrote about the European financial crisis for Foreign Affairs this week. He asserted that private investors and richer countries will have to shoulder some of the sacrifice to save the continent.

The eurozone crisis is not a simple story of sinners and saints. Overleveraging -- the excessive borrowing practice at the core of the crisis -- is itself a perverse and direct consequence of the unified currency. The introduction of the euro and the inflation-fighting mandate of the European Central Bank caused credit-rating agencies to lower interest rates across the eurozone. Greece, Ireland, and Italy suddenly found themselves with Germany’s credit score, and their citizens and governments went on borrowing sprees. Current account deficits exploded in the periphery, as German and French banks loaned money to Greeks and Spaniards to buy German and French products. Fantastical financial products pushed by Wall Street, London, and Frankfurt further fueled the consumption binge, since they allowed individuals to take out even larger mortgages and revolving credit.

All was well until the financial crisis dried up revenues and forced governments to transfer the costs of risky private borrowing to the public through bailouts. Banks are once again making record profits, but taxpayers are stuck with the hangover from the party. The sovereign debt crisis, then, is not merely a result of individual states’ irresponsible fiscal decisions but part of a systemic failure in the flow of European credit.

Read The Greek Haircut and Europe's Shared Responsibility at Foreign Affairs.

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On November 3, 2011, Carl J. Dahlman presented on his new book about the frictions created by the rapid rise of China and India in the global system that can spiral into trade, resource, cold and conventional wars, and disastrous climate change. The book's main purpose is to provide an integrated view of the impact of their rise in the context of increased global interdependence, trade frictions, and the limits of the environment to deal with CO2 emissions. It warns that the stakes are high and that the current international governance system is not up to the challenges of defusing these frictions. As a result, the main powers, including the U.S. the EU, China, and India, have to do more to address these frictions .The changes required, while conceptually straight forward, will be difficult to implement. They are painful and not easy to sell politically. However, the cost of not making the changes will lead to greater costs in lower global welfare in the medium and longer run.

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ACMCU partnered with the Sultan Qaboos Center (SQCC) and the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies to host a colloquium on music in Oman. The presentations included “Mozart in Muscat: Politics, Performance, and Patronage in Oman” by Nasser Al-Taee, Director of Education and Outreach, Royal Opera House, Muscat; “African Identities, Afro-Omani Music, and the Official Constructions of a Musical Past” by Majid Al Harthy, Assistant Professor of Music/Musicology/Ethnomusicology, Sultan Qaboos University; and “The Musical Design of National Space and Time in Oman” by Anne K. Rasmussen, Associate Professor of Music and Ethnomusicology and Chair of the Department of Music, College of William and Mary. The event was moderated by D.A. Sonneborn, who is an Associate Director at the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage at the Smithsonian Institution.

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