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uh, student of modern language and linguistics, who teaches nowadays at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and has taught before at Berkeley, Columbia, uh, and, other, uh, strife-torn universities. He is a member of many organizations and learned societies, including— I am sure he would want me to mention— the Aristotelian Society of Great Britain. In one of his essays, Mister Chomsky writes, quote, “By accepting the presumption of legitimacy of debate on certain issues, such as this one, one has already lost one’s humanity.” I should like to begin by asking him why, under the circumstances, if by being here he stands to lose his humanity, he decided to appear in the first place. Because, that, first of all, I, I didn’t quite put it in those terms, I don’t think. I think that by…

Of course, of course. [cough]

Yeh, but I think that there are… I said that there are certain issues, for example Auschwitz, such that by consenting to discuss them one degrades oneself and to some degree loses one’s humanity, and I think that that’s true.

Nevertheless, I can easily imagine circumstances in which I would have been glad to debate Auschwitz. American Terror libretto © Jeffrey Lependorf 2008

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Profile for Jeffrey Lependorf

American Terror  

opera libretto by Jeffrey Lependorf based on the 1969 "Firing LIne" television debate between William F. Buckley and Noam Chomsky on America...

American Terror  

opera libretto by Jeffrey Lependorf based on the 1969 "Firing LIne" television debate between William F. Buckley and Noam Chomsky on America...

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