The University amid Embattled Reason

By

The UC Davis Forums on the Public University and the Social Good
Tuesday, January 24,2017
The University amid Embattled Reason

Todd Gitlin
 Professor of Journalism and Sociology and chair of the Ph.D. program in Communications  Columbia University

Todd Gitlin is an American writer, sociologist, communications scholar,  novelist, poet, and not very private intellectual. He is the author of 16 books, including The Sixties: Years of Hope, Days of Rage; Inside Prime Time; and The Whole World Is Watching: Mass Media in the Making and Unmaking of the New Left. His forthcoming book is a novel, The Opposition. Professor Gitlin has also contributed to many books and published widely in general periodicals, online magazines, and scholarly journals. He is a columnist for Tablet  (tabletmag.com), a media commentator at BillMoyers.com, and a member of the editorial board of Dissent. Previously, he was a columnist at the New York Observer and the San Francisco Examiner, and a regular op-ed contributor to the Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and Newsday. His poems have appeared in The New York Review of Books, Yale Review, The New Republic, and Raritan.

Professor Gitlin will discuss how, in his view, “the presidential campaign of 2016 exhibited with unparalleled extremity destructive tendencies that are by no means new: widespread hostility toward educated elites; widespread denial of climate change; widespread ignorance in many other spheres. One of our major political parties, and not only the president-elect, is committed to unreason on several fronts.” At the same time, journalism, which is democracy’s chief instrument of public knowledge, suffers financial distress, cognitive crisis, and ideological undermining. Gitlin believes that the university ought not to react defensively. It ought to enlarge its ambitions by sponsoring ambitious journalism as well as publishing for a general audience.

 

Lecture:
3 to 4:30 p.m.
Multipurpose Room
Student Community Center

Reception:
4:30 to 5:30 p.m.
Multipurpose Room
Student Community Center