News from the John W. Kluge Center: In the Know #14: The Newsletter of the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress

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In the Know #14: The Newsletter of the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress

We at the Kluge Center would like to thank all of you, our supporters and friends, for your continued support and engagement. This newsletter- provides - updates on Kluge Center activities, including our events, fellowship competitions, and blog posts. Please share this information with anyone who might be interested in following Kluge, applying for fellowships, or viewing our events. Our dedication to bringing you the highest quality conversations on important public issues and scholarship - continues. Let’s keep the conversation going.

John Haskell, Director of the Kluge Center


Kluge Kudos

Below are links to scholarly articles of interest by and featuring current Kluge scholars and alumni, as well as awards, publications, events, and other accomplishments.  If you have suggestions for featured items (subject to Library of Congress policy), please send them to for consideration. Please do not provide links to book reviews or sales sites, per Library of Congress policy.

Wayne Wiegand’s (Distinguished Visiting Scholar) book, “American Public School Librarianship: A History,” was released by the Johns Hopkins University Press in September, 2021. It is the first comprehensive evaluative, analytical, and critical history of a ubiquitous educational institution that was built over the generations by hundreds of thousands of public school librarians serving hundreds of millions of public school students K-12.

Aynne Kokas (Kluge Fellow) published an article with the Wilson Center called "The CCP 100th in Media Narratives: Appeasing Young Viewers Puts Party Leadership to the Test.” In it, she discusses the relationship of the Chinese youth to their government and the measures that the government has taken to try to embolden youth support. Furthermore, Kokas was a speaker on the Need To Know Podcast Series, talking about recent Chinese crackdowns in the media and technology. In an Atlantic article, Kokas provided her thoughts on the entertainment industry’s dependence on the Chinese market. In Business Insider, she wrote about the increasing tension between entertainers and government regulations amidst media crackdowns in China. Kokas also commented in an article for Voice of America about the pressures the Chinese and US entertainment industries are facing. The article was written in simplified and traditional Chinese.

Zachary Schrag (Kluge Fellow) published, “The Fires of Philadelphia: Citizen-Soldiers, Nativists, and the 1844 Riots Over the Soul of a Nation” with Pegasus books. Early research on this book began when he was a Kluge Fellow in 2009, and he returned over the years to the Library of Congress for additional research.

Klaus Larres’s (Kissinger Chair) book, “Uncertain Allies: Nixon, Kissinger, and the Threat of a United Europe,” from Yale University Press, will be released in November. A majority of the research is based on material from the Kissinger papers at the Library of Congress. In addition, he edited and contributed a chapter to “Dictators and Autocrats: Securing Power Across Global Politics,” published by Routledge, to be released in November.

Hal Brands (Kissinger Chair) wrote three articles for American Enterprise Institute: One op-ed titled, “Biden can leave Afghanistan but not the Middle East” discusses how America became interested in the Middle East and how the US Military leaving Afghanistan could increase the dilemma we face in the area. He looked at the similarities between ending the war in Afghanistan and the ending of the Vietnam War in, “For a humiliated superpower, Vietnam shows a path back.” He wrote about how exit from Afghanistan will affect US foreign policy in, “Biden’s Afghan withdrawal achieved nothing but disaster.” Hal also wrote an article in Bloomberg titled, “Huawei’s Decline Shows Why China Will Struggle to Dominate.”

Ignacio Sanchez Prado (Chair in Countries and Cultures of the South) gave a lecture in September on popular cosmopolitanism, exploring intersections of mid-century Mexican cinema into the aesthetics and politics of emerging world cinema maps.

Jemima Hodgkinson (British Research Council Fellow) published an article in Atlantic Studies on research she completed at the Kluge Center titled, “The mediated text: Transatlantic circulation among periodicals of interwar African American poetry”. In the article, she discussed transatlantic circulation of African American poetry in the early 1900s.

Sarah Binder (Kluge Chair in American Law and Governance) was quoted in the New York Times article, “Should Biden Reappoint Jerome Powell? It Depends on His Theory of Change.” She said, “Part of the Biden mantra has been to restore civility and downplay partisan tensions. It’s somewhat fortuitous for Biden that if he wants to reappoint Powell he can do it under the guise of restoring the independence of the Fed even though Powell thoroughly fits his views on monetary policy.”

Martha Jones (Distinguished Visiting Scholar, beginning January 2022) will write four books for Basic Books according to a New York Times article. The first book will examine the history and legacy of slavery’s sexual violence.

Irene Wu (Visiting Scholar) published an article in India Review titled, “India and the soft power rubric: the relevance of migrants, students, visitors and movies.” The article explored India’s soft power sources, origins, deficits, and applications.


The Pillars of Democracy

Much of the work of the US Government occurs away from the spotlight. Unlike senators, Supreme Court justices, or presidents, public servants in the administrative state are rarely mentioned in the news. Still, the decisions of higher-profile public figures would have little effect without the agencies and the people in them that put policy into practice. Indeed the regulatory state effectively comprises a fourth branch of government. This arrangement can create problems for accountability though, as the administrative state’s insulation from elections and public scrutiny breeds distrust in the public. Join the John W. Kluge Center, the American Enterprise Institute, and the Brookings Institution for a conversation on the causes of that distrust and how the administrative state can win the confidence of the American people. This event will take place live on October 21, at 4pm. Click here for more information and registration.



Blog Posts

In her first blog post for the Kluge Center, Research Assistant Sophia Zahner announced a call for applications to the Baruch S. Blumberg NASA/Library of Congress Chair in Astrobiology, Exploration, and Scientific Innovation. Zahner also published an interview with Kluge Fellow Caroline Riley on “Thérèse Bonney: Curator, Photographer, Syndicator, Spy.” We commemorated the recent death of Cary Maguire, benefactor of the Cary and Ann Maguire Chair in Ethics and American History at the Kluge Center. The Kluge Center welcomed a new cohort of fellows and chairs starting in residence in fall 2021 and announced the new Jon B. Lovelace Fellow. We recapped some of the main points in the Pillars of Democracy event on the US Presidency, and previewed the September 30 Pillars of Democracy event on the federal judiciary, which features former Maguire Chair Cathleen Kaveny of Boston College, and includes Randall Kennedy of Harvard University on the panel. The event video will be available October 14.


Alumni Spotlight

Jesse J. Holland

Distinguished Visiting Scholar, 2019


What was most valuable about your time at the Kluge Center?

My time at the Kluge Center gave me a chance to work on a project that I’ve been dreaming of for a while: the untold story of the people of Freedman’s Village, an African American settlement that sat on the grounds of Arlington National Cemetery. Using the resources of the Library of Congress, I was able to look at and absorb some of the original stories of these forgotten people and begin to put together their fascinating story. The resources of the Kluge Center and the time that the Kluge Center provides for this kind of work was invaluable to me, and it put me on the road to bringing this story to Americans and making it part of our American historical tapestry. 


Where are you now?

I’m now a professor of journalism at the School of Media & Public Affairs at George Washington University, which was my next stop after leaving the Kluge Center. I’m still serving as the Saturday host for Washington Journal on C-SPAN, and I’m also exploring my passion for comic books, science fiction and fantasy writing. You can see me discussing the Library of Congress’s comic book collection here for the Kluge Center, and you can also check out some of the comic books I’ve written for DC Comics by looking up “Superman: Red And Blue #3” and the Heritage chapter of DC Comics’ Represent line. I’m also still writing fiction, and you can see my latest tale of the Marvel Comics’ Black Panther character in the “Black Panther: Tales of Wakanda” anthology, where I served as editor. I’m also working on a book based on my research at the Library of Congress on Freedman’s Village, and working on an African American journalism anthology. I try to keep busy! 


Do you use social media, blogs, or websites to engage in public scholarship?

I can be found EVERYWHERE on social media, on Facebook, on Twitter, and on Instagram. Follow me on these exciting social media sites for all of the upcoming news about what I’m doing next!


Did You Know? Interesting Facts About the Kluge Center

Did you know that Kluge center has hosted 455 postdoctoral Fellows?


Social Media:

Be sure to follow our Twitter account to get all the latest on our blog posts, open applications, and any future events.


We Want to Hear From You:

Do you have thoughts on what would make an interesting blog post? Submissions for the Kluge Kudos and Media Mentions section? What about an idea for event programming? Please reply to this email or contact