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University Lecture: Nicholas Dirks, "Scholars and Spies"Add to Queue

  • Posted by : columbiauniversity

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  • Date posted : Jan 01, 1970


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At the dawn of the Second World War, the United States had neither a major intelligence capability nor a wealth of expertise about global matters in its colleges and universities. The newly formed Office of Strategic Services both organized new global ventures in research and analysis and set the intellectual context and initial institutional organization of what became postwar "area studies." This lecture reviews the history of area studies and the uncanny relationships between scholarship and espionage in the twentieth century, a history that is then used to provide a backdrop for assessing the contemporary demands of "globalization" on the structures and commitments of the university.

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