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Russell Frank

A collection of Russell Frank's columns from the past 20 years, titled “Among the Woo People: A Survival Guide for Living in a College Town," was published this fall by the Penn State University Press. His columns for Statecollege.com won first place in the Commentary-Non Daily category of the Society of Professional Journalists Keystone Chapter 2017 Spotlight contest. Frank is a member of the journalism faculty at Penn State. Before launching his academic career, he worked as a reporter, editor and columnist at newspapers in California and Pennsylvania for 13 years. He is, by academic training, a folklorist (Ph.D., UPenn), which means, when you strip away the academic jargon, that he loves a good story. His views and opinions do not necessarily reflect those of Penn State University.

Articles by Russell Frank

Huzzah for the Enemies of the People
Column
Huzzah for the Enemies of the People
60 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
I strongly suspect that the only stories Trump dismisses as fake news are the warts-and-all reports about Trump himself. [Read More]
The Detox Is Over. Let the Detox Begin.
Column
The Detox Is Over. Let the Detox Begin.
62 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
Imagine: At 24 days, Michael Flynn’s tenure as national security adviser was shorter than my detox diet. Who’s next? Having survived without bread, coffee, alcohol, etc., I’m totally ready to go no-Conway, no-Pruitt, no-Perry, no-Puzder. [Read More]
Ten Days That Have Shaken the World
Column
Ten Days That Have Shaken the World
64 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
Columnist Russell Frank offers one observer’s takeaways from the Dawn of the Donald. [Read More]
Bye Bye Barry, We’re Gonna Miss You So
Column
Bye Bye Barry, We’re Gonna Miss You So
66 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
By the time you read this column the presidency of Barack Obama will be ticking down to its last 48 hours. For some this is cause for celebration. I’m among the mourners. [Read More]
Looking for Keys in All the Wrong Places
Column
Looking for Keys in All the Wrong Places
68 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
When we arrived at our temporary home here, Brock Nelson was waiting with the keys. Perhaps you haven’t heard of Brock Nelson. Not being a hockey follower, I hadn’t either. He’s a member of the New York Islanders. Here is how he and I became acquainted. [Read More]
And Now, a Moment of Harmonic Convergence
Column
And Now, a Moment of Harmonic Convergence
70 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
Remember the Harmonic Convergence? It happened in August 1987. The sun, the moon and Earth’s Solar System siblings were aligned in an equilateral triangle, or grand trine, that was supposed to herald the dawn of an age of peace. [Read More]
If You’re Happy and You Know It, Trash the Town
Column
If You’re Happy and You Know It, Trash the Town
72 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
What you find in a violent crowd, author Bill Buford says, is 'the dark satisfactions' of nothingness. 'Nothingness in its beauty, its simplicity, its nihilistic purity.' [Read More]
A Hallelujah Thanksgiving
Column
A Hallelujah Thanksgiving
73 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
Of course they should come, the rest of us agreed. The only questions were, should we talk about the elephant in the room? And could we, without spoiling the feast? I thought we should and we could. [Read More]
Aviation and Its Discontents
Column
Aviation and Its Discontents
74 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
In a burst of industrious ant-ism, I, normally a lazy grasshopper, made my Thanksgiving travel plans at the end of August. [Read More]
How to Talk about the Election on Thanksgiving
Column
How to Talk about the Election on Thanksgiving
75 weeks ago - StateCollege.com - Russell Frank
At first I thought our recent democratic exercise would have to be off-limits on Thanksgiving Day. With Clinton voters passing gravy boats to Trump voters and Trumpistas helping Clintonistas to yams, I didn’t see how we could get all the way through the pies without the discussion taking a testy t [Read More]
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