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Monday, June 9, 2008

Noam Chomsky live

Last April I attended a talk by Chomsky at Boston University's law school, in a packed auditorium. An online video of the talk is now available on BU's video site, which by the way is a terrific resource (see link for this specific talk below.)

Personally, I found Chomsky's talk smug, uninspiring, and mostly aimed at the inside group of those who already agree with his anti-imperialist perspective (a group which includes myself.) Perhaps he has given the same talk too many times, or perhaps it is Chomsky's formulaic analysis of U.S. foreign policy which does not allow for nuances--such as his insistence that the interventions in Bosnia and Kosovo were driven by imperialist motivations when, in my view and that of many other progressives, the delayed and justified actions of the Clinton administration were forced upon it by its own human rights rhetoric.

Whatever the case, the highlight of this video comes right at the beginning, when Chomsky is given a passionate introduction by one of BU's student anti-war leaders. Listen to her speech, if nothing else, for signs that the new generation might be one to contend with.

The video is available at this link.

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