Using Charles Murray to Attack Faculty

ACADEME BLOG

BY AARON BARLOW

Charles Murray is a complicated figure. A Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV), he married into a wealthy Thai family and spent time in the countryside as a PCV there during the 1960s. That type of experience, as any RPCV can tell you (as I can tell you), is formative. Immersion into another culture shifts one’s views of even one’s home culture, leading to an updated version of Nora Bayes’s 1919 “How Ya Gonna Keep ‘Em Down on the Farm (After They’ve Seen Paree)?” For most of us among the several hundred-thousand RPCVs, the obvious answer (you can’t) has led to an expansive view of the world and its peoples, an appreciation of variety and difference.

There is also a great deal of learning about the ‘metropole’ and its attempts to control people far from it. One of the things that I learned (and have written about

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