September 7, 2007
Conservative Author, Stanford Fellow Dinesh D'Souza
Dinesh D'Souza, author of the controversial book The Enemy at Home: The Cultural Left and Its Responsibility for 9/11(Doubleday, 2007), will present a lecture, "Christianity, Islam and the War on Terror," on Thursday, Sept. 20, at 7 p.m. in Cowles Auditorium at Whitworth University. Admission is free. For more information, please call (509) 777-4263.
D'Souza, a best-selling author and the Robert and Karen Rishwain Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, has been called one of the "top young public-policy makers in the country" by Investor’s Business Daily; the New York Times Magazine named him one of America's most influential conservative thinkers.
The Enemy at Home, in which D'Souza argues that the American left bears a measure of responsibility for the antipathy from the Muslim world that produced the 9/11 attacks, generated a firestorm of criticism from book reviewers and political pundits. In a New York Times review, Alan Wolfe described D'Souza as "...either self-delusional or dishonest," while Warren Bass, senior editor at Book World, stated in a Washington Post review that The Enemy at Home was an incendiary polemic and "...a dim, dishonorable book."
D'Souza defended himself and his book in a Jan. 28 Washington Post column, "Bin Laden, the Left and Me," in which he states, "All my arguments can be disputed, but they are neither extreme nor absurd. So why has The Enemy at Home been so intemperately excoriated? (One reason) can be gleaned from the common theme in the reviews: that mine is a dangerous book. But if a book says things that are obviously untrue and can be disproved, then it is not dangerous – it is merely fiction and should be ignored. A book is dangerous only if it exposes something in the culture that some people are eager to keep hidden."
Whitworth invited D'Souza to speak on campus as part of the university's Speakers and Artists Series. The purpose of the series is to present a broad range of voices, perspectives and ideas that will enrich the intellectual and spiritual life of the Whitworth campus and the larger community. According to the stated purpose of the Speakers and Artists series, "Whitworth faculty and staff are confident that Christian worldviews and Christian thinkers are sharpened by rigorous and open intellectual inquiry and by engaging with the broadest spectrum of ideas."
"We believe it is important for our students to hear a range of views on many topics, and to wade into areas of controversy in the search for truth," says Mike Ingram, associate dean for faculty development and scholarship and professor of communication studies. "Few speakers Whitworth invites to its campus come with universal admiration. Dinesh D’Souza speaks and writes from a clear philosophical perspective that has earned him both admirers and critics. His observations about the national landscape are insightful and important to contemplate."
Before joining the Hoover Institution, D'Souza was the John M. Olin Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. In 1987-88 D'Souza served as senior policy analyst at the Reagan White House. From 1985-87 he was managing editor of Policy Review. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Dartmouth College in 1983.
Many of D'Souza's books have influenced public opinion and public policy, while also generating controversy. His books include the New York Times bestseller What's So Great about America? (Penguin Books, 2002) and Letters to a Young Conservative (Basic Books, 2003). His 1991 book, Illiberal Education, was the first study to publicize the phenomenon of political correctness. The book was a New York Times bestseller for 15 weeks and was listed as one of the most influential books of the 1990s.
In 1995, D'Souza published The End of Racism, a national bestseller. D'Souza's 1997 book, Ronald Reagan: How an Ordinary Man Became an Extraordinary Thinker, makes the case for Reagan's intellectual and political importance. In 2000, D'Souza published The Virtue of Prosperity: Finding Values in an Age of Techno Affluence, which explores the social and moral implications of wealth.
D'Souza's articles have appeared in major magazines and newspapers, including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic Monthly, Vanity Fair, The New Republic, and National Review. He has appeared on numerous television programs, including the Today show, Nightline, The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, The O'Reilly Factor, Moneyline, and Hannity and Colmes. For more information about Dinesh D'Souza, visit www.dineshdsouza.com.
Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private, liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The university, which has an enrollment of 2,500 students, offers 53 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.
Julie Shanholtzer, Speakers and Artists Series and psychology department program assistant, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4263 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Julie Riddle, public information officer, Whitworth University (509) 777-3729 or email@example.com.