iOS app Android app

Mark Rice
Mark Rice is a professor and the chair of the Department of American Studies at St. John Fisher College in Rochester, New York. His book, Dean Worcester's Fantasy Islands: Photography, Film, and the Colonial Philippines, has been nominated for the 2016 Philippine National Book Award in History.

Entries by Mark Rice

In Celebration Of Pokémon GO

(0) Comments | Posted July 18, 2016 | 7:33 AM

Like many people, the seemingly instantaneous eruption this month of Pokémon Go as a cultural phenomenon took me by surprise.

I learned about it while sitting on my front porch one evening early last week. Large groups of people I didn’t recognize (along with a smattering of...

Read Post

Both Trump Supporters and Haters Share a Flawed Belief in "American Exceptionalism"

(0) Comments | Posted June 1, 2016 | 11:45 AM

American exceptionalism is a somewhat flexible idea that has at its core the belief that the United States is a nation unlike any other nation, that its past and its politics are unique and perhaps even divinely endowed, and that the forces of history that shape other countries do not...

Read Post

Why I Am Opposed to an Academic Boycott of Israel

(153) Comments | Posted December 6, 2013 | 11:57 AM

I'm a professor of American Studies. My professional organization is the American Studies Association (ASA), of which I've been a member for more than a decade. Over the course of those years I've organized, chaired, and presented papers on panels at several of the annual meetings of the ASA. I...

Read Post

Hey, Teachers, Leave Those Kids Alone

(14) Comments | Posted October 2, 2013 | 6:10 PM

We've been having a beautiful stretch of weather recently, with more days of mild blue skies than I can recall in my 15 years of living in New York. On one such afternoon last week, I was sitting on my front porch waiting for my son to come walking home...

Read Post

The Need for Common Frames of Reference

(2) Comments | Posted May 22, 2013 | 6:33 PM

I have a colleague whose positions on most things political are very far from my own. I know this because he and I are friends on Facebook and we're both inclined to post links to articles dealing with current affairs that we think are either spot-on or infuriating. Perhaps not...

Read Post

Hanford Is No Place for a Park

(0) Comments | Posted April 24, 2013 | 8:24 PM

Seen from Washington State Highway 24, Hanford's B Reactor looks smaller than a sugar cube, a gray lump set down next to the Columbia River some 30 miles north of Richland, my hometown. It is one of several nuclear reactors built along that stretch of river more than a half-century...

Read Post

Misadventures in the Common Core

(11) Comments | Posted March 5, 2013 | 10:12 AM

My daughter -- a bright, fun-loving 8-year-old who isn't easily rattled -- was reduced to tears in school yesterday. Apparently, while working on a math lesson involving fractions, she wasn't "getting it" the way that she thought she should, and her frustration mounted and her eyes welled up and, later,...

Read Post

Gun Enthusiasts: Why Not Say You Just Want to Own Your Guns?

(233) Comments | Posted February 5, 2013 | 3:40 PM

Opponents of new gun laws often rely on one of two arguments in support of gun ownership. The first is that only an armed citizenry can prevent tyranny from taking root in the United States. Any restrictions on gun ownership are seen as ominous signs that tyranny is on the...

Read Post

A Bad Week for the First Amendment

(4) Comments | Posted January 4, 2013 | 5:50 PM

If supporters of the right to bear arms have been feeling threatened in recent weeks, supporters of the First Amendment may have even more cause for alarm. This week has seen at least three separate attacks on freedom of expression in this country, two by government officials and one through...

Read Post

The Evil That Guns Can Do

(22) Comments | Posted December 18, 2012 | 4:48 PM

There used to be a car parked up the street from where I live that had a faded bumper sticker showing a handgun whose barrel morphed into a sharpened pencil. Beneath it were the words: "If guns kill people, do pencils misspell words?"

The bumper sticker was meant to...

Read Post

Let's Stop Talking About Red States and Blue States

(8) Comments | Posted December 10, 2012 | 11:55 AM

One of my Facebook friends recently posted a link to an article from the National Review Online (NRO) suggesting that Congressional Republicans "propose a 'tax Blue America' plan." It isn't entirely clear whether the NRO suggestion is meant to be taken as a serious proposal, but the article...

Read Post

Being Poor and Stuff

(29) Comments | Posted November 20, 2012 | 12:36 PM

President Obama's recent re-election sent many people on the right scrambling to find explanations for an event they found unfathomable. Echoing Mitt Romney's comments about the forty-seven percent of voters who feel they are entitled to food, housing, and "you name it," Bill O'Reilly lamented on...

Read Post

Explaining Politics to the Young

(0) Comments | Posted November 8, 2012 | 2:53 PM

Wednesday morning I sat down with one of my students to help him plan his schedule for next semester. We both admitted to being tired, to having stayed up too late the night before watching the election results come in. He noted the purple sweater I was wearing and I...

Read Post

"Unexceptional Is Fine by Me"

(1) Comments | Posted November 6, 2012 | 8:01 AM

A few weeks ago I got an email from Scott Shane, a reporter at The New York Times, who wondered if we could set up a time for an interview over the telephone. Being unused to such requests, I was excited, curious, and more than just a little bit nervous....

Read Post