Where exactly am I right now?

You Are Here is a newsletter that deals with questions of place and politics. The newsletter’s abbreviation — which, of course, is YAH — sums up my level of excitement and interest in these questions and their potential answers. In the research I do for my day job, and the hobbies and interests in my personal life, I dig into the power of place and location in our politics, our economy, our social lives, and our personal journeys.

In this newsletter, you can expect to find reflections and analysis on how where we live, love, and work intersects with and influences our politics. I’ll also be dipping into areas where place and localism pops up in our culture; so you can look forward to the occasional poem, podcast, or video that touches on some particular and (I think) important aspect of place. You can get a better feel for the kind of shenanigans you’ll be subjecting yourself to by reading the introductory post for You Are Here:

Does being here cost money?

Nope, not right now. You can expect free posts every two Fridays for the foreseeable future. These posts will always be free, no matter what happens down the road. So, if this newsletter feels like your cup of tea/coffee/water/whiskey, I hope you’ll consider starting a free subscription by clicking on the button down below so that new posts can come directly to your email inbox.

As the newsletter expands, I’m hoping to build out different and more frequent kinds of writing projects, comment threads, topic suggestions, and bonus posts. I welcome post ideas, new content types (Q&As? Threads? Podcasts? Roundtable discussions?) from those of you who might be interested in that down the road. At that time, I’ll consider asking readers to support this venture with those gold tokens that I can use at Spacebar Arcade in Boise, or else with some actual American currency.

For now, though, I want to respect your time and wallet to see if this expansion is something I can commit to. I’m mindful of that fact that you, like me, probably already have more subscriptions than you can count on six hands, so no worries if another one isn’t for you. For now, everything’s free!

In addition to subscribing, I also hope you’ll consider sharing You Are Here with a friend or colleague who might enjoy it.

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What’s the author’s deal?

The author’s deal is that his name is Charlie Hunt, a political scientist by trade who teaches and researches at Boise State University in Boise, Idaho. I’m a Rhode Island Native, and live in northwest Boise with my spectacular wife, Keara, and my dog, a blue heeler/absolute gentleman mix named Rhody.

I’m the author of two books: The first is an expansion of my doctoral dissertation about the electoral advantages members of Congress get from having deep local roots in the places they represent. The second is a textbook about Congress that I wrote with my co-author, grad school partner-in-crime, and certified wedding officiant Casey Burgat. It has a really badass cover that I did not design.

I also torture myself by submitting and occasionally publishing academic articles to peer-reviewed journals. Generally speaking, I can’t recommend doing this. But since I already did, you can check out my research in journals like American Politics Research, Electoral Studies, and State Politics and Policy Quarterly.

Beyond academia, my more user-friendly political analysis has appeared over the years in USA Today, The Washington Post, and the Brookings Institution, and I publish with some regularity in The Conversation. If you’re more of a listening person than a reading person, you can hear me every Thursday at 3:30 p.m. Mountain Time on The Big Tent on Radio Boise, where my BSU colleagues and I break down the week’s news in local, national, and international public affairs. Starting in 2024, I’ll also be hosting a new podcast for Boise State Public Radio with my colleague Jaclyn Kettler on political scandals across history.

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Reflections and research on place, politics, poetry, and more.


Polisci prof at Boise State and native Rhode Islander. I live in Boise with my wife Keara, and my dog, a blue heeler/absolute gentleman mix named Rhody. I'm the author of the You Are Here newsletter!