Thanks to Prof. Stauffer for taking the time to write up such a thorough response to the recent criticisms of The State of Jones that can be found here and elsewhere. I would much rather move on from this controversy, but given the circumstances outlined at the beginning of his response I thought it was only fair to post it.
I rarely read blogs, and this summer I’ve had difficulty keeping up with the Internet: my wife gave birth to a boy, we’ve been without shower and kitchen owing to a house addition, and I’ve had to finish two 10,000 word essays on deadline. Sally Jenkins and I welcome debate, as we emphasized, and the fact that I was unaware of your tacit expectation that I should read and post responses on your blog should not be interpreted as a refusal to engage in public and scholarly conversation.
You may be right in suggesting that “the blogosphere is now shaping” academic debates and historiography. After all, the past forty years have witnessed an extraordinary democratization in academia, with scholars of the highest order having richly diverse institutional affiliations, from high schools, newspapers, and magazines to museums, educational institutes, the film industry, and colleges and universities of all ranks. The Internet, which has revolutionized access to archives and other repositories of knowledge, has accelerated the democratization. My hunch is that blogs will contribute to this process. In any event, let me try to address the major criticisms of “The State of Jones”
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