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  • Thompson shares her thoughts on Biden, Harris with LocalSYR

    "President Biden served eight years as Vice President, so he was very much involved in the Obama Presidency," says Margaret Susan Thompson, associate professor of history and political science. "He saw things from the inside. But I think one of the things that’s going to make a big difference is his respect for and I think a reliance on expertise in a variety of fields." Thompson also believes Vice President Harris will play a big role over the next four years, especially because the Senate is so narrowly divided at this time. Watch the full interview via


    Sharp op-ed on survival of democracy published on

    "For democracy to survive, there has to be public confidence in the rule of law and regular and fair elections," writes James Roger Sharp, professor emeritus of history. "That is how democracies govern themselves, and efforts to destroy public faith in the system threatens that democracy." Sharp's op-ed, "Democracy on trial: Can we save it?," was published on


    McCormick speaks to AP about Mexico dropping case against Cienfuegos

    Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office announced it was dropping the drug trafficking case against its former defense secretary, retired Gen. Salvador Cienfuegos. Gladys McCormick says the only surprise was that Mexico didn’t make a better show of looking into Cienfuegos. "One would think that they would have at least followed through on some semblance of an investigation, even if it was just to put some window dressing on the illusion that the rule of law exists," McCormick says. Read more in the Associated Press article, "Mexico president accuses DEA of fabricating general’s case."


    Maxwell faculty speak to the media about violence at the US Capitol

    Several Maxwell faculty members spoke with various media outlets about yesterday's violence at the U.S. Capitol. Professor Emeritus William C. Banks said the fiasco was a "lawless threat" to the country's democratic institutions. "I hope and believe that this pointless and damaging spectacle will further diminish Trump and Trumpism going forward," he told China Daily. Margaret Susan Thompson, associate professor of history and political science, told WAER, "People are disappointed when their candidates lose. There's no question about that, and believe me, I've been on the losing side of many elections. But this has gone beyond that. This has gone beyond to what can only be called fanaticism."


    Takeda narrates early French-Persian trade relations

    In her new book "Iran and a French Empire of Trade, 1700-1808: The Other Persian Letters" (Oxford University Press), Syracuse history professor Junko Takeda explores the political, commercial, and cultural links between eighteenth century France and Persia. Her global microhistory reveals how trans-imperial trade impacted the lives of various entrepreneurs and mercenaries living on the edge of empire, while demonstrating how French engagement with the Asian continent shaped Enlightenment political thought and policy making across the Age of Revolutions.


    Lasch-Quinn talks to spiked about her new book, Ars Vitae

    Why write a book that appears to be calling for greater self-focus, for the cultivation of more "inwardness," when we appear to have a surfeit of damaging self-centered introspection as it is? Because, Elisabeth Lasch-Quinn says, today’s self-obsession entails "a false kind of inwardness. It’s a sham, It’s not the real thing." And this, reviewer Tim Black says, is what makes "Ars Vitae: The Fate of Inwardness and the Return of the Ancient Arts of Living" such vital reading. "It provides both a thorough-going critique of the therapeutic, self-obsessed ethos so dominant today, and a way beyond it, through the potential development of those inner, moral resources on which true selfhood and a moral community rest," he says. Read his full review, "Beyond the therapeutic," published in spiked.


    McCormick comments on release of Mexican Gen. Cienfuegos in WSJ

    "The Mexican attorney general may follow through on the pretense of investigating Cienfuegos, but nothing will come of it because he is untouchable," said Gladys McCormick, associate professor of history and Jay and Debe Moskowitz Endowed Chair in Mexico-U.S. Relations. She was quoted in the Wall Street Journal article, "Mexico’s President Pushed Hard for Release of General Arrested in U.S."


    Thompson discusses the possibility of Trump resigning with WPIX

    President Trump could resign shortly before his term ends on Jan. 20 at which point Vice President Mike Pence would assume office and could issue a pardon. "This would certainly be legal, if questionably ethical, especially if there were a prior agreement between Pence and Trump," says Margaret Susan Thompson, associate professor of history and political science. "You’ll recall that Ford pardoned Nixon under similar circumstances, though Ford denied throughout his life that there had been any agreement between him and Nixon." Read more in the WPIX-11 article, "Could President Trump resign?"


    Allport's book reviewed in WSJ, makes The Times best history book list

    Associate Professor of History Alan Allport's new book, "Britain at Bay: The Epic Story of the Second World War: 1938-1941," was recently reviewed in the Wall Street Journal. "Britain at Bay"...might be the single best examination of British politics, society and strategy in these four years that has ever been written," says Paul Kennedy. "I put my copy down with deep satisfaction. History writing, and historical scholarship, sometimes seems as fine as ever it was." Allport's book also made The Times' list of the best history books of 2020.


    McCormick quoted in Al Jazeera article on release of Gen. Cienfuegos

    "At the end of the day, arresting Cienfuegos jeopardized future collaboration between the two militaries because it meant that no one on the Mexican side was safe from possible prosecution, even after helping the Americans," Gladys McCormick, Jay and Debe Moskowitz Endowed Chair in Mexico-U.S. Relations, tells Al Jazeera. "All in all, freeing Cienfuegos without any charges or penalties showcases that his arrest was a complete debacle for both the DEA and DOJ [Department of Justice]," she says. Read more in "Mexico denies deal to nab cartel leader in return for Cienfuegos."


    McCormick speaks to AP, Reuters about US case against Gen. Cienfuegos

    The United States dropped a high-profile drug trafficking and money laundering case against a former Mexican defense secretary, retired Gen. Salvador Cienfuegos, an extraordinary reversal that followed an intense pressure campaign from Mexico. Gladys McCormick tells the Associated Press that prosecuting Cienfuegos would have been enormously fraught for the United States. "Following through on prosecuting Cienfuegos would have compromised intelligence gathering and joint military operations for years to come, which is part of the reason why the original arrest was so scandalous," she says. McCormick was also quoted in the Reuters article, "Mexico's president: we didn't threaten to expel U.S. drug agents over General Cienfuegos arrest."


    LA Review of Books reviews Lasch-Quinn's new book Ars Vitae

    Professor Elisabeth Lasch-Quinn's book, "Ars Vitae: The Fate of Inwardness and the Return of the Ancient Arts of Living," was recently reviewed in the Los Angeles Review of Books. "Lasch-Quinn has set out in 'Ars Vitae' to embody the best of what true philosophical writing has to offer. She writes in a way that makes her readers better thinkers, more reflective and self-aware, and she does so by showing the development of her own thinking — who her influences are, the sources from which she draws her wisdom, and how philosophy informs her understanding of herself, the culture, and the world in which she lives," says Matthew Clemente.


    Allport explores Great Britain’s WWII experience

    In his new book, "Britain at Bay: The Epic Story of the Second World War: 1938-1941" (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group), Maxwell history professor Alan Allport traces the history of Great Britain in the early years of the Second World War. The book was also reviewed in the New York Times, “Rethinking Winston Churchill and Neville Chamberlain.”


    Terrell remembers literary scholar Ruth Klüger in

    Writer and literary scholar Ruth Klüger died October 5, 2020, at age 88. Her memoir "Still Alive: A Holocaust Girlhood Remembered" recounts her childhood in Nazi-occupied Austria; her deportation and imprisonment in Nazi concentration camps; her postwar years in occupied Germany; and eventual journey to America. Robert Terrell, assistant professor of history, reflects on her life and legacy, particularly in the present moment of radicalization, protest and multifaceted conversations about inequality. "She reminds us that making a more humane and tolerant world requires accountability and unmovable courage in criticism," he writes. Terrell's article, "Remembering Ruth Klüger and her case for accountability," was published by


    Bennett, Gadarian quoted in NYT on voters' fear for our democracy

    There have been other moments of interlocking crises and deep anxiety in America in the past century. But in those moments, the country didn’t have a president seen by many as having "taken a pickax to the tent poles of democratic institutions," says Professor Emeritus David Bennett. According to Shana Gadarian, "There are a couple ways in which the president has chosen an ineffective strategy." The first is that he has tried to tug on personal worries, like falling property values. "The second," she says, "is telling people not to be worried about something that is in fact worrisome." Read more in the New York Times article, "Americans Are Afraid. Not for Themselves, but for the Country."


    McCormick discusses post-election US-Mexico relations with AP, CNN

    If Biden wins the presidential election, "It's a return back to normalcy, the status quo, the way in which we knew politics to work across the border," Gladys McCormick, Jay and Debe Moskowitz Endowed Chair in Mexico-U.S. Relations, told CNN. "It would be a lot less volatile, a lot less, 'who the hell knows what happens' when you turn on the TV." McCormick was quoted in the CNN article, "Why Mexico's President might want Trump re-elected," and the Associated Press article, "Low expectations in Mexico as US election approaches."


    Lasch-Quinn explores the meaning of life in new book

    In her new book, “Ars Vitae: The Fate of Inwardness and the Return of the Ancient Arts of Living” (Notre Dame Press), Elisabeth Lasch-Quinn, professor of history in the Maxwell School, explores Americans’ stirring interest in ancient Greco-Roman philosophies including Cynicism, Platonism, Gnosticism, Stoicism and Epicureanism, and whether they can offer any alternatives to contemporary consumer culture as a means to happiness and well-being.


    Center for Disability Resources empowers students, changes perceptions

    Miguel Pica ’22, a history major in the Maxwell School, knows the important work the Center for Disability Resources (CDR) does to help students with disabilities meet their academic goals. He has been working with an access counselor at the center since he came to campus in 2019—and has found his personal success with their efforts. Pica, who was medically retired from the U.S. Army after being injured on active duty, was concerned about completing his coursework on time, having enough time on exams and possibly being penalized or forced to drop a class for too many medically related absences.


    Thompson discusses impact of Trump's health with CNY Central, KPCC

    "This is unusual in that it's part of a larger national story, it's not simply a story that a particular individual has contracted or a condition that a particular president has contracted. Its part of a pandemic," Margaret Susan Thompson tells CNY Central. If the president's condition worsens to the point where his presidential authority needs to be transferred to Vice President Mike Pence, it will have a major impact on the upcoming election, she says. "If he becomes seriously ill obviously it will have an impact." Thompson was also interviewed on KPCC's "AirTalk."


    Thompson quoted in AP article on Trump's response to COVID-19

    "He sees everything, including the implications of this terrible virus, in terms of his own political and personal success — ‘How does it affect me and my electability and my popularity,’" says Margaret Susan Thompson, associate professor of history and political science. She was quoted in the Associated Press article, "Analysis: US to hit 200K dead; Trump sees no need for regret."


    Allport discusses his forthcoming book with BBC History Extra

    Alan Allport, associate professor of history, was interviewed for a two-part feature on History Extra, the BBC's History podcast, about his forthcoming book Britain at Bay: The Epic Story of the Second World War, 1938-1941 (Penguin Random House, November 2020). The first part examines Neville Chamberlain, the outbreak of war, and the fall of France. The second part considers the Battle of Britain, the Blitz, the Battle of the Atlantic, and the broadening of the conflict to include the Soviet Union and the British empire.


    Scholars join faculty for 2020-21; new chairs announced

    Five tenure-track faculty members have joined the Maxwell School for the 2020-21 academic year. In addition, three current faculty members have been named chairs of their academic departments.


    McCormick discusses Mexico's handling of COVID-19 with CBC News

    "The logic from the Mexican government was to basically hold off until they could no longer and then impose quarantine measures, knowing full well that individuals in the informal economy wouldn't necessarily be able to abide by social distancing or staying home, in part because they needed to be out to be able to make a living," says Gladys McCormick. She was interviewed for the CBC News article "As COVID-19 deaths surpass 60,000, Mexico hits 'catastrophic scenario' officials warned about."


    Thompson discusses progress, role of women in politics on WAER

    "We still haven't elected a woman on the national ticket in either party," says Margaret Susan Thompson, associate professor of history and political science. "I think we still have a long way to go before we can talk about equality. But what we're talking about is progress." She was featured in the WAER segment "Women Making Progress in Securing Elected Office, But Equality Remains Elusive." Thompson was also quoted in the American Prospect article "Women Will Decide Which Man Is Right for the Job."


    Thompson discusses local congressional races with CNY Central

    "What it does mean mostly is that there will be a higher turnout then there was in 2018," says Margaret Susan Thompson, associate professor of history and political science. "There is always higher turnout in a presidential election year, but what that will mean in any given district is less clear." She was interviewed by CNY Central for the segment "Local congressional candidates are all rematches from 2018."


    Khalil weighs in on Trump's Israel-UAE deal in USA Today

    President Donald Trump announced Thursday that the United Arab Emirates and Israel had agreed to formalize diplomatic relations, a potentially historic agreement and a rare foreign policy win for the president during an election year. Osamah Khalil says he views the announcement as an attempt to boost Trump and [Israeli Prime Minister] Netanyahu, who both face intense political headwinds over their handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and other matters. Khalil was interviewed for the USA Today article "Trump announces Israel and United Arab Emirates will formalize diplomatic ties in potentially historic deal."


    Faulkner speaks to about women’s rights movement in CNY

    "It wasn’t the first time that women had argued for the right to vote. It wasn’t the first time that there was a convention of women that talked about a women’s right to participate in public affairs. Abolitionists had been talking about it for decades, but one of the things that happened in Seneca Falls is that [Elizabeth Cady] Stanton really made the vote central to women’s rights," says Carol Faulkner, professor of history. She was interviewed for the article "Crusade for the Vote: How Central NY launched the women’s suffrage movement."


    Kallander authors book on 17th century Qing Manchu invasion of Korea

    A new book by historian George Kallander provides a translation of the only first-person account of Korea’s resistance to a key Manchu invasion in the 17th century. The book, titled The Diary of 1636: The Second Manchu Invasion of Korea, is published this month by Columbia University Press.


    Kumar article on police violence in India published in Scroll

    "So long as we can live in a society where labourers have to walk hundreds of kilometres to reach their homes while trains idle by, where rape victims are shamed for their clothing choices, where Dalits are punished for making a little money – we cannot be shocked that the police also target the same citizens, albeit with brute force," writes Radha Kumar, assistant professor of history. Her article, "Thoothukudi isn’t an exception – brutal police violence has always been the norm in India," was published n Scroll.


    McCormick discusses the Mexican president's US visit with AP, CNN

    "López Obrador's visit will allow [Trump] to showcase how he has bent Mexico to his will by reminding voters that this is a 'very good deal' for the US while signaling his achievements at strong-arming Mexico on immigration policies," Gladys McCormick told CNN. She also spoke with the Associated Press about President Andrés Manuel López Obrador's meeting with President Trump.


    Faulkner discusses the history of protest on CBS This Morning

    "American protesters have always used the 4th of July as a symbol, particularly the Declaration of Independence, as a way to say to the nation, 'you have not lived up to your ideals,'" says Carol Faulkner, professor of history. She was interviewed on CBS This Morning for a segment on the history of protest.


    McCormick discusses violence in Mexico with Al Jazeera, Reuters

    "Everything he (Lopez Obrador) has put into place in terms of security has either been amateur or just very papered over in terms of political rhetoric," Gladys McCormick told Al Jazeera. "The optics of what is happening on this two year anniversary are disheartening for what lays ahead," she added, "because what we are essentially going to get is more of the same." McCormick also spoke to Reuters about the assassination attempt on Mexico City's chief of police.


    Kyle co-edits history of early political communication in England

    Chris R. Kyle, associate professor of history, is the co-editor of Connecting Centre and Locality: Political Communication in Early Modern England, published recently by Manchester University Press. The collection, co-edited by Jason Peacey, a professor of early modern British history at University College London, explores the dynamics of local and national political culture in 17th-century Britain, with an emphasis on political communication.


    McCormick is the School’s new diversity, equity and inclusion officer

    Gladys McCormick has been named the Maxwell School’s director of diversity, equity, and inclusion. McCormick will lead and advise on issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the Maxwell School, and will represent the School to the University community and external stakeholders. In addition to advising, she will develop a DEI strategic plan and organize events to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in the School; and will assist departments, administrators, and students in their efforts to promote DEI.


    Faulkner discusses the simplification of past protest movements in NYT

    According to many historians, much of what the public knows or learns about prior protest movements is sanitized for the purpose of discrediting successive movements. In reality, social movements are often much messier. Carol Faulkner says nineteenth-century women’s suffragists “went out of their way to present themselves as very middle-class, very respectable, and used the tools of respectable politics." Read more in the New York Times article "Why Protest Movements Are ‘Civil’ Only in Retrospect."


    Bennett discusses prejudice during NYC's cholera outbreaks in Truthout

    David Bennett, professor emeritus of history, was interviewed for the Truthout article "What New York City’s Cholera Epidemics Can Teach Us in the Age of COVID-19." News about cholera breaking out among Asians on board ships from China and India en route to Europe and North America fueled stereotypes about infection, exacerbating anti-immigrant sentiment. According to Bennett, immigrants "drew hostility because of their poverty; the diseases they brought with them after the perilous ocean voyage; [and] the slum housing they were forced to live in."


    Senior Kara Foley wins top undergraduate research prize

    Kara Foley, a senior majoring in international relations and policy studies, won the Maxwell School’s annual Ben and Marcia Baldanza Prize for top undergraduate research paper, as part of the School’s annual efforts to recognize exemplary undergraduate research. Xinzhi Lin, a senior history and international relations major, was awarded an honorable mention for his research paper. Francine D’Amico received the Ben and Marcia Baldanza Faculty Advisor of the Year Award.


    Thompson talks with Spectrum on impact of Reade allegation, election

    "As disturbing as these allegations against Vice President Biden are, similar allegations have been made against President Trump... I think [voting for Biden is] a legitimate choice to make that does not negate the possibility that Tara Reade is telling the truth." Margaret Susan Thompson, associate professor of history and political science, was interviewed for the Spectrum News segment "Biden to Choose a Woman Running Mate While Faced With Tara Reade Allegation."


    Khalil piece on the importance of the USPS published in The Hill

    "The indispensable physical connection the Postal Service maintains between the American people and the federal government means the institution's future is a matter of national security," writes Osamah Khalil, associate professor of history. His co-authored article, "The postal service is essential to national security," was published in The Hill.


    Thompson discusses role of nuns in past pandemics in GSR

    Members of orders that came over from Europe to North America were often already engaged in ministering to the sick, says Margaret Susan Thompson. "Most of the sisters who came here were really devoted to meeting the needs of the time, and this was one of the needs of the time." Thompson was quoted in the Global Sisters Report article "Pioneers of past pandemics."


    Maxwell students receive Fulbright teaching and research grants

    Three Maxwell students will make impacts around the globe as 2020-21 recipients of awards through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. Five Maxwell students were also chosen as alternates. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program funds a number of different awards that include English teaching assistantships (ETA) and study/research grants in over 140 countries.


    McCormick, Ackerman piece explores how Mexico is handling the pandemic

    Gladys McCormick and Edwin Ackerman use the case of Mexico to discuss how countries with large informal economies, such as India and Brazil, are grappling with the pandemic. The article, "Quarantine Is Not One Size Fits All: The Case of Mexico," was published by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.


    Khalil piece on preparing for the next pandemic published in The Hill

    Osamah Khalil says the U.S. needs to invest in health care, take the global lead in supporting the World Health Organization, and establish a long-term investment in the future of medical research and public health to prepare for the next pandemic. He discusses these and other recommendations in his article "Preparing for the next pandemic," published in The Hill.


    McCormick speaks to Bloomberg about Mexico's response to the pandemic

    "As communities take matters into their own hands, implementing their own safety protocols and taking the helm of how they each prepare for the coming pandemic, we see a further erosion of the federal government’s authority," says Gladys McCormick. She was interviewed for the Bloomberg article "North America’s Best Restaurant Remains Open in AMLO’s Mexico."


    McCormick discusses Mexico's response to coronavirus in the Hill

    "With poorly communicated and inconsistent messaging that offers no clear guidelines, their federal government’s inaction has given rise to widespread rumors that are beginning to stoke panic and insecurity," writes Gladys McCormick. Her article "The Mexican government's response to COVID-19 is insufficient," was published in the Hill.


    Khalil discusses the Syrian war, Russia in USA Today

    "Moscow views the Syrian civil war as a foreign-influenced crisis that threatens the broader Middle East region and its interests there and at home," says Osamah Khalil, associate professor of history. He was interviewed for the USA Today article "Syria's war turns 9: How barbarity, confusion and indifference helped Bashar Assad prosper."


    Khalil quoted in USA Today article on US-Iran tensions in Iraq

    Iraq has been at the center of an intensifying tug of war between Tehran and Washington, according to Osamah Khalil, associate professor of history. "Iraq has become a battleground for American and Iranian influence." Khalil was interviewed for the USA Today article "Tug of war: In Trump vs. Tehran, Iraqis caught in the middle."


    Khalil discusses Iran's missile attacks with CNY Central

    "We would hope now is that cooler heads will prevail within the Trump administration that can reason with the President that the time is now for negotiations rather than further escalation," says Osamah Khalil, associate professor of history. He was interviewed for the CNY Central article "Expert from Syracuse University analyzes Iran's missile attack at a U.S. airbase in Iraq."


    Schmeller discusses how the poinsettia came to the US in Wash Post

    "The story of how the 'Christmas flower' came to the United States from its native Mexico is not one of peace and goodwill," says Mark Schmeller. "It is more a case study in the highhanded diplomacy, Yankee arrogance and mutual suspicions that have long plagued U.S.-Mexico relations." Schmeller's article, "The conspiracy-fueled origin of the Christmas poinsettia," was published in the Washington Post.


    Khalil comments on death of Iran Gen. Soleimani in USA Today, LA Times

    The killings of Iranian Major General Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, Deputy Chairman of Iraq's Popular Mobilization Units, "were a dangerous and ill-advised escalation by the United States," Osamah Khalil, associate professor of history and Middle East expert, told USA Today. Khalil also spoke with the Los Angeles Times and Australia's ABC radio.

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