Scott McLemee

Scott McLemee is the Intellectual Affairs columnist for Inside Higher Ed. In 2008, he began a three-year term on the board of directors of the National Book Critics Circle. From 1995 until 2001, he was contributing editor for Lingua Franca. Between 2001 and 2005, he covered scholarship in the humanities as senior writer at The Chronicle of Higher Education. In 2005, he helped start the online news journal Inside Higher Ed, where he serves as Essayist at Large, writing a weekly column called Intellectual Affairs. His reviews, essays, and interviews have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, The Nation, Newsday, Bookforum, The Common Review, and numerous other publications. In 2004, he received the Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing from the National Book Critics Circle. He has given papers or been an invited speaker at meetings of the American Political Science Association, the Cultural Studies Association, the Modern Language Association, and the Organization of American Historians. A selection of his work is available at his website. He is also a member of two group blogs, Crooked Timber and Cliopatria.

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Most Recent Articles

February 15, 2017
A new documentary and a book from Denmark point to the dangers and dead ends of the self-transformation industry, says Scott McLemee
February 8, 2017
In Light Come Shining: The Transformations of Bob Dylan, Andrew McCarron faces an excess of material about his subject, not to mention more than 50 years of investigation, speculation and exegesis by obsessive fans, writes Scott McLemee.
February 1, 2017
Scott McLemee reviews Monkeytalk: Inside the Worlds and Minds of Primates, which elucidates the two camps that have formed in the study of how intelligence evolved.
January 25, 2017
Peter J. Spiro’s At Home in Two Countries explores how globalization has turned dual citizenship from an anomalous and potentially dangerous condition into something almost commonplace, writes Scott McLemee.
January 18, 2017
Scott McLemee reviews Robert E. Denton Jr.’s scholarship on the American presidency, which highlights how immediately coping with the lack of any guidebook is one of the most urgent demands of the office.
January 11, 2017
Rob Brotherton’s Suspicious Minds illuminates how Trump’s affinity for the conspiratorial mind-set forms the bedrock of his very existence as a political figure, writes Scott McLemee.
December 14, 2016
In a new book, Timothy Recuber explores how the media cover disasters like the Virginia Tech shootings -- but sometimes in problematic ways, writes Scott McLemee.
December 7, 2016
In Exiled in America: Life on the Margins in a Residential Hotel, author Christopher P. Dum portrays not only inescapable squalor but also efforts to create order in seriously damaged lives, writes Scott McLemee.
November 30, 2016
Scott McLemee explores the mysteries of a centuries-old manuscript -- one that has tested, and defeated, the mental powers of numerous researchers.
November 23, 2016
The death of Scott Eric Kaufman -- an American critic and leading first-generation, graduate student blogger -- drives home the sense that this has been an especially cruel year, writes Scott McLemee.

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