Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov
Meditate on Dostoevsky’s final – and greatest – novel.
What can literature contribute to the study of strategy? In this seminar, military historian and strategic advisor Eliot Cohen explores what students of strategy can learn about the exercise of power from an enduring master, William Shakespeare.
Through a close reading of Shakespeare’s most famous history play, Henry V (1599), fellows will meditate on the events that secured legitimacy for the House of Tudor – how Prince Hal takes the throne and leads England to victory in war against France.
Image Credit: The King of England Receiving the French Herald, 1485
Eliot Cohen on Shakespeare's "rough magic."
This course takes place via Zoom over three sessions, held the week of January 3, from 2:00 to 3:15 PM ET. Fellows will receive a $100 stipend contingent upon participation in the course and completion of a brief response paper. All course materials will be provided.
Eliot Cohen is the Robert E. Osgood Professor at the Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) where he has taught since 1990. He served as Dean of SAIS from 2019 to 2021. In addition to public service in the Department of Defense he served as Counselor of the Department of State from 2007 to 2009.
Eliot Cohen is the Robert E. Osgood Professor at the Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), where he has taught since 1990. He served as Dean of SAIS from 2019 to 2021. Cohen received his BA and PhD degrees from Harvard University and, after teaching there and at the Naval War College, founded the Strategic Studies program at SAIS. His books include The Big Stick (2017), Conquered into Liberty (2011), and Supreme Command (2002). In addition to public service in the Department of Defense, he served as Counselor of the Department of State from 2007 to 2009. He writes frequently for major newspapers and is a contributing writer at The Atlantic.
A 1977 graduate of Harvard College, he received his Ph.D. there in political science in 1982. From 1982 to 1985 he was Assistant Professor of Government at Harvard, and Assistant Dean of Harvard College. In 1985 he became a member of the Strategy Department of the United States Naval War College. In February 1990 he joined the Policy Planning Staff of the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and in July of that year he was appointed professor of strategic studies at SAIS.
From April 2007 through January 2009 he served as Counselor of the Department of State. A principal officer of the Department, he had special responsibility for advising the Secretary on matters pertaining to Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan, and Russia, as well as general strategic issues. He was the lead Department of State liaison with the Deputy National Security Advisor for Iraq and Afghanistan. He represented the Department of State in interagency coordination with senior National Security Council staff, Department of Defense, and intelligence community officials on a number of issues, including the Syrian/North Korean reactor crisis of 2007, and the Somali piracy problem in 2008.
Meditate on Dostoevsky’s final – and greatest – novel.
Reflect on two great novels from the father of modern African literature.
Explore the political and religious contexts of Shakespeare's plays.
Meditate on the nature of political authority with one of Shakespeare's greatest plays.
Learn the theory, practice, organization, and control of war and military forces.
Assess U.S. defense strategy to counter China’s rise.
Jacob Howland is a Senior Fellow at the Tikvah Fund. His research focuses on ancient Greek philosophy, history, epic, and tragedy; the Hebrew Bible and the Talmud; Kierkegaard; and literary and philosophical responses to the Holocaust and Soviet totalitarianism. His most recent book is Glaucon’s Fate: History, Myth, and Character in Plato’s Republic.
Martha Bayles is a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture at the University of Virginia, and since 2003 she has taught humanities at Boston College. She is currently at work on a monograph on the threats to independent journalism around the world; and a book about the importance of “voluntary restraint” in the American tradition of free speech.
Vickie Sullivan is the Cornelia M. Jackson Professor of Political Science and teaches and studies political thought and philosophy. She also maintains teaching and research interests in politics and literature. She has published extensively on Montesquieu and Machiavelli and is the co-editor of Shakespeare’s Political Pageant.
Jenna Silber Storey
Jenna Silber Storey is Assistant Professor in Politics and International Affairs at Furman University and Executive Director of Furman’s Tocqueville Program. She is the co-author of a book with Benjamin Storey: Why We Are Restless: On the Modern Quest for Contentment (Princeton University Press, 2021). Further information about her work can be found at www.jbstorey.com.
H. R. McMaster
H. R. McMaster is the Fouad and Michelle Ajami Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. Previously, he served as the 26th assistant to the president for National Security Affairs and as a commissioned officer in the United States Army for 34 years before retiring as a Lieutenant General. He is author of Battlegrounds: The Fight to Defend the Free World.
Elbridge Colby is co-founder and principal of The Marathon Initiative, a policy initiative focused on developing strategies to prepare the United States for an era of sustained great power competition. He is the author of The Strategy of Denial: American Defense in an Age of Great Power Conflict (Yale University Press, 2021). Previously, Colby was from 2018-2019 the Director of the Defense Program at the Center for a New American Security, where he led the Center’s work on defense issues.