Author Archives: Peter

About Peter

Associate Dean for Research and the Lincoln Filene Professor of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Tufts University's Tisch College of Civic Life. Concerned about civic education, civic engagement, and democratic reform in the United States and elsewhere.

The Anachronist in the Florida Review

(Korcula, Croatia) I am in Europe for a mixture of work–in Ukraine and Germany–and vacation. Meanwhile, the Florida Review has published The Anachronist as a multimedia feature. It begins: The Argument A woman is bound to the stake to be burned: No … Continue reading

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how not to talk about The People

Maria Bartiromo (Fox News): As the commander-in-chief, as the president of this great country, what can you do to bring us together? Donald Trump: Our people are so incredible. …  Do you know, there’s probably never been a base in … Continue reading

Posted in populism, Trump, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Democrats have a good chance of controlling at least one House of Congress in 2019

Political prognostication is a fool’s game and arguably a distraction from the important work of citizens, which is to influence–not to forecast–the future. But I can’t resist. Recent projections give the Democrats anywhere from a 39% to a 58% (or … Continue reading

Posted in 2018 election, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

coming soon: Democracy’s Discontent and Civic Learning

Now available for pre-ordering is Charles S. White (ed.), Democracy’s Discontent and Civic Learning: Multiple Perspectives. Chapters include: “The Populist Moment,” by William A. Galston. “Populism, Democracy, and the Education of Citizens,” by Thomas S. Vontz and J. Spencer Clark, (with Stephen … Continue reading

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new survey on Americans’ views of democracy

(Salt Lake City, Utah) Freedom House, the George W. Bush Institute, and the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement have released a new national survey on Americans’ attitudes toward democracy. The headline finding is that Americans value democratic norms–regardless … Continue reading

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convicted by their conscience: the rule of law, judgment, and writing in The New Testament

John 8:3-11: 3 And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, The “scribes and Pharisees” arrive as an undifferentiated group. They act in concert. No names or … Continue reading

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why autocrats are winning (right now) #DemFront #DemFront18

During the opening session of Frontiers of Democracy last night, Hardy Merriman from the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict showed this graph from Erica Chenoweth and Maria J. Stephan. It shows that nonviolent social movements were strikingly successful at achieving their own stated objectives … Continue reading

Posted in democratic reform overseas | Leave a comment

civic education that is less about the state

We are completing the tenth (!) annual Summer Institute of Civic Studies, which revolves around the three schools of civic theory outlined below. (Each “school” encompasses diverse views and criticisms.) Today we talked about what these theories would mean for … Continue reading

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the prospects for an evangelical turn against Trump

Not long after Donald Trump’s inauguration, I met with a conservative evangelical pastor near his church in a small city in one of the most conservative of the Southern states. He told me how deeply he despised and feared the … Continue reading

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federal research funding available for civics

US Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences (IES): FUNDING OPPORTUNITY FOR R&D and EVALUATION in SOCIAL STUDIES IES has released its 2019 Request for Applications (RFA) through its Research Grants Program. See: https://ies.ed.gov/funding/pdf/2019_84305A.pdf. The RFA includes a new Special Topic for Social Studies … Continue reading

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