New Yorker reporter Hendrik Hertzberg to visit College

by Roshan Dutta | 11/17/13 6:03pm

Senior editor and staff writer for The New Yorker Hendrik Hertzberg will discuss the Constitution’s role in contemporary politics alongside government department chair John Carey at the Rockefeller Center on Monday.

Government professor Bernard Avishai invited Hertzberg to facilitate a discussion among Carey and members of the current government faculty, with the added benefit of providing an educational and thought-provoking experience for attendees.

“The most important thing is to create a conversation between Rick and members of the government department who specialize in and are passionate about the same area,” Avishai said. “They all can learn from one another.”

Carey said his admiration for Hertzberg’s work should make for an interesting conversation.

“Frankly, I think he’s one of the best political writers we’ve got,” Carey said. “He’s kind of a household name as far as people who follow political journalism. I think we’re both looking forward to discussing a shared interest in what kind of rule changes and reform in the way we view our Constitution can improve representation in the government.”

While Carey and the government department faculty share similar academic interests with Hertzberg, they have yet to discuss the content of the discussion together.

“It will definitely be a new experience, it will be fun to see what the chemistry will be like,” Hertzberg said. “It will be an exploration of ideas, much more so than a debate.”

Hertzberg graduated in 1965 from Harvard University, where he wrote for The Harvard Crimson. Hertzberg’s long career has included stints as a U.S. Navy officer, chief speech writer for President Jimmy Carter and editor for numerous publications. He has been working for The New Yorker since 1992, where he has served as executive editor, senior editor and staff writer.

Hertzberg was named one of Forbes’ “25 Most Influential Liberals in the U.S. Media” in 2009 and is a two-time winner of the National Magazine Award for General Excellence. Hertzberg is also the author of three books — “¡OBAMANOS!,” which documents the 2007 and 2008 Obama campaign, “Politics: Observations and Arguments, 1966-2004,” an analysis of four decades of American politics and “One Million,” a compendium of arbitrary statistics.

Carey’s research in the government department focuses on comparative politics. He specializes in constitutions, legislative politics and elections.

The discussion, “Ghosts in the Machine: Our Messed-up Constitution,” is co-sponsored by the Rockefeller Center and the government department.