“I use ‘disruptive’ in both its good and bad connotations. Disruptive scientific and technological progress is not to me inherently good or inherently evil. But its arc is for us to shape. Technology’s progress is furthermore in my judgment unstoppable. But it is quite incorrect that it unfolds inexorably according to its own internal logic and the laws of nature.”
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Moshik Temkin, Associate Professor of History and Public Policy, joined the Harvard Kennedy School faculty in 2008. Previously he taught at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris and at Columbia University. A specialist in the history of the modern United States in global and comparative perspective, with a focus on the connections between history and public policy, he is particularly interested in the interaction between Americans and non-Americans–the effects that American politics have had on the wider world, the roles that international politics have played in American society and policymaking in the United States, and the dynamics created when American and international politics come into contact, or conflict.
He is the author of The Sacco-Vanzetti Affair: America on Trial (Yale University Press, 2011), which was a finalist for the Cundill International Prize, as well as several articles and book chapters. His current research interests include the history of the death penalty in comparative perspective, the impact of war on public policy intellectuals since World War I, Malcolm X's career and politics in a global context, the relationship between American civil rights and global human rights, and the contest between global political activism and travel control since the Cold War. He is currently at work on a book provisionally titled Undesirables: Travel Control and Surveillance in an Age of Global Politics, to be published by Harvard University Press.
At Harvard, he is affiliated with the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History, the Center for European Studies, and the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs. At the Harvard Kennedy School, he convenes the Harvard Seminar on History and Policy and is the co-founder and co-director of the Initiative on History and Public Policy. In 2010-2011, he co-convened the Harvard International and Global History Seminar. As of 2011, he is a Big Think Inaugural Delphi Fellow. He received his B.A. at the Hebrew University and his M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. in History at Columbia University.Last Updated: Sep 14, 2018, 3:24pm