Cersonsky: On privilege at Yale

October 18, 2010
Disagreeing with someone who has given you a lot makes for some tough love. Many students at Yale would consider themselves politically active, or at least politically engaged. And yet, when confronted with choices about policies and practices at Yale and in New Haven, our values sometimes express themselves in peculiar forms. In recent pieces »

Cersonsky: Two New Havens

September 21, 2010
At 1:50 yesterday afternoon, Assistant Chief of Yale Police Ronnell Higgins finally sent students something they, and their newspaper, wanted: a campus-wide email stating what many already knew. “There was a serious incident involving gunfire on College Street between Crown and George early Sunday morning.” The issue itself, some confrontation involving people with guns, should »

Cersonsky: Why I should’ve chosen Yale

September 3, 2010
If you want to hear angry groans from either side of the Yale Political Union, just stop halfway through a speech and tell the body that the topic at hand is really “a question for social science.” Politics and academics can be a bit awkward around each other. Strictly speaking, they have nothing in common. »

Bronstein, Cersonsky, Crosby and Eidelson: For financial aid reform

This month, 1,940 students will decide whether to accept their offers of admission to Yale. On Monday, many will come for Bulldog Days. They’ll attend lectures by Shelly Kagan, Marvin Chun and David Blight. They’ll eat s’mores in courtyards; braving the chaos of the extracurricular bazaar, they’ll each sign up for 25 student organizations. By »

Cersonsky: Life, death and scholarship

March 24, 2010
Over spring break, I headed downtown from my Baltimore hotel for the International Conference on Infant Studies where I’d be presenting a poster on my summer monkey research. A few minutes en route, the drizzly mid-morning was pierced by collective chants emanating mysteriously from behind a skyscraper. At first glance unconcerned with their lack of »

Cersonsky: Saintly values

February 5, 2010
In the midst of a reading response or an essay, I have a bad habit of clicking to ESPN.com and checking sports statistics. No matter my timetable, the mesmerizing stream of box scores is hard to resist. There’s no meaning to it; it’s a compulsion — a game. If you’ve browsed ESPN.com recently, you’ve probably »

Cersonsky: Democracy in New Haven

January 12, 2010
Douglas Rae’s “City: Urbanism and its End” reads like a tragedy. We first meet late-nineteenth, early-twentieth century New Haven: a proudly localist “sidewalk republic,” a well of civic fauna and a hotbed of manufacturing where city and business stand united. Then enter the automobile, aggressive national corporations, destructive zoning laws and questionable revitalization projects, and »

Cersonsky: The end of the end of ideology

December 1, 2009
Last year in The Wall Street Journal, Sen. Joe Lieberman ’64 LAW ’67 lamented the ideological fall of what was once an “unhesitatingly and proudly pro-American” Democratic Party (“Democrats and Our Enemies,” May 21). “This worldview began to come apart in the late 1960s, around the war in Vietnam. In its place… [Democrats] saw America »

Cersonsky: Rogue, reconsidered

November 18, 2009
Behind the verbal dexterity and endearing moderateness that have earned him 30-plus-comment praise on the News’ Web site, Matthew Shaffer (“Going rogue,” Nov. 16) is secretly a tool of the vast right wing conspiracy — and so are we. The problem is that neither he nor we realize it. The rhetoric of the Right has »

Cersonsky: Step it up, Dwight Hall

November 13, 2009
At 8:15 on Sunday morning, the Party of the Left concluded its inaugural 12-hour charity debate-a-thon. For me, the appeal of the event was obvious — besides the average sleep-deprived revelry that you’d expect, ample donations were collected for Shelter Now, an organization for which I served as co-director and whose work, I believe, is »

Cersonsky: Summer, rewritten, rethought

October 27, 2009
This summer I blogged about my life as a monkey psychologist in Puerto Rico. Six entries in all, lots of pictures and, by personal standards, wild times: daily barefoot beach runs, secret mango forests and a thousand incorrigible monkeys. An immaterial collection of images and words is a tropical fountainhead of sights, smells and shrieks. »

Cersonsky: The persistence of change

October 13, 2009
Thirty-Seven Howe St. lies fittingly at the crossroads of Yale and the rest of the world. My first visit occurred during the summer of 2007, when a high school friend invited me to see a screening of Michael Moore’s “Sicko” at this place called the New Haven People’s Center. I was excited to see the »