Yascha Mounk

Yascha Mounk is a professor at Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C., founder of Persuasion and author of The Identity Trap.

Drama students: how universities raised a generation of activists

39 min listen

This week: On Monday, tents sprung up at Oxford and Cambridge as part of a global, pro-Palestinian student protest which began at Columbia University. In his cover piece, Yascha Mounk, a professor at Johns Hopkins University, explains how universities in both the US and the UK have misguidedly harboured and actively encouraged absurdist activism on

How universities raised a generation of activists

It was only a matter of time before America’s student protests spread to the UK. In Oxford, tents have been pitched on grass that, in ordinary times, no student is allowed to walk on. The ground outside King’s College in Cambridge looks like Glastonbury, complete with an ‘emergency toilet’ tent. Similar camps can be found

Why the British think differently from Americans

When I first started teaching undergraduates at Harvard, the grading system the university employed struck me as very odd. Even ambitious students at top colleges in the United States see it as their job to answer any essay question in the most thorough and reasonable way. They regurgitate the dominant view in scholarly literature in

Why we should worry about progressive AI

Google recently launched its AI image generator, Gemini. Users could type in a description and then, in seconds, the algorithm would create the requested painting or photograph. There was just one hitch: Gemini, more neatly than any previous AI, showcased the extent to which the political sensibilities of the Silicon Valley elite are shaping this

The case for photo-bombing

A few months ago, I visited Angkor Wat, the majestic temple in present-day Cambodia that once stood at the centre of a vast empire. As the five towers of the palace came into view, I was, despite the intense heat, fully immersed in the beauty of the place. I imagined how excited a visitor from

Identity crisis

28 min listen

On the podcast: In his cover piece for the mag this week, political scientist, Yascha Mounk has written about why identity politics has polarised our understanding of race. And why the left has come to divide groups into oversimplified categories of ‘the oppressors’ and ‘the oppressed’.  Also this week:  Can we trust photographs to paint