Lim: Obama’s Current Communication Style Inevitable

A story for NPR explores an interesting, and very noticeable change in Barack Obama: as a candidate, his communication style was bold, inspiring and at times even poetic; but, now, nearly two years later as the country’s chief executive, “President Obama does not hold a candle, oratorically speaking, to Candidate Obama.” Why? Elvin Lim, assistant professor of government, discusses the changes in Obama oratorical style, explaining that, the president’s current approach is an inevitable function of leading in a polarized political environment. Lim adds that the functions of campaigning and governing are completely different: “And poetry is of much less use to him as president.”

Potter on the Tenure and Retirement Question

Writing for The New York Times, Claire Potter, professor of History, professor of American Studies, announces that she will retire from the classroom…in 2025. Potter goes on to say why she believes that, as a tenured professor, planned retirement allows her to leave academia before her skills begin to diminish while simultaneously creating a process that allows the continued infusion of new, younger teacher-scholars.

Grossman: Dodd-Frank Bill Hits Key Finance Issues

Richard Grossman, professor of economics, discusses the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act in an op-ed published in the Aug. 1 Hartford Courant. Grossman says the act, which President Obama signed into law July 21, is the “most sweeping financial reform in 75 years.”

The 848-page law tackles a host of issues brought to light by the recent financial meltdown.

“Next to the reforms adopted in the wake of the Great Depression — which kept our country crisis-free for nearly four decades — Dodd-Frank is modest in scale and scope,” Grossman writes. “Our best hope of avoiding a recurrence of the financial turbulence of the last few years is an improved regulatory structure, which the Dodd-Frank legislation will deliver if the new regulators adopt sensible rules, combined with effective and sustainable macroeconomic policies.”

The op-ed also is posted on Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd’s web site.

Yohe: Is Geoengineering a Climate Change Cure?

In a recent article in Scientific American, Gary Yohe, Woodhouse/Sysco Professor of Economics, professor of environmental studies, discusses recent suggestions that geoengineering may curtail the amount of greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere. In geoengineering, scientists deliberately manipulate Earth’s climate to counteract the effects of global warming.

“It’s something to have on the shelf in case you look up and say ‘We’re really going over a cliff here,” Yohe says in the article. “We have to do something.'”

Student-Created ‘Split Frame’ Wins AIA National Award

Wesleyan’s architecture design class and its Research-Design-Build Studio have been recognized by the American Institute of Architects’ (AIA) 2010 Small Projects Practitioners Awards. They were recognized for the observation platform “Split Frame” they created for the Helen Carlson Wildlife Sanctuary in Portland, Conn., in 2008. The studio and class are overseen by Elijah Huge, assistant professor of art, assistant professor of environmental studies.

Last year the class and studio created the Sukkah on campus as one of their projects.

Yohe: Ice-Free Arctic a Certainty This Century

In an article in Scientific American, Gary Yohe, Woodhouse/Sysco Professor of Economics, Professor of Environmental Studies, discusses the radical changes that he and other members of the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) say are inevitable because of global warming and climate change. This includes an “ice-free” arctic.

Potter: Republicans Back Then, Liberals Today?

Appearing on MSNBC’s Dylan Ratigan Show, Claire Potter, professor of history, professor of American studies, discusses whether Republican Presidents Eisenhower and Nixon would be labeled liberals today. Potter’s view offers nuance to the question, and also brings to light an emphasis on centrism that reigned during much of the first two decades of the Cold War period in both the Republican and Democratic parties.

Potter’s segment begins at the 5:11 mark in the piece.

Rutland: Russia in WTO May Be Impeded by…Russia

Writing for The Financial Times, Peter Rutland, Colin and Nancy Campbell in Global Issues and Democratic Thought, professor of government, discusses the challenges Russia faces in its quest to become a member of the World Trade Organization, including pressure from other countries. However, Rutland goes on to detail how the greatest barrier to the country may come from within.

Braxton Applauded in ‘Avant Gardist Tribute’

Anthony Braxton, professor of music, was honored in a two-day, benefit tribute in New York City with musical event titled “Tri-Centric Modeling: Past, Present and Future.” The event was lauded in a New York Times piece, which praised Braxton and his music and said the celebration “gathered a marvelous cohort of his protégés and peers, outlining something like a living index of contemporary improvised music.”