In the early twenty-first century, the campaigns to globalize the American university are often accompanied by a narrative that reverses the US-centric approach to higher education of the postwar years. During the Cold War decades, the United States attracted large numbers of foreign students to its campuses and put them through sufficient training before sending them home to their own countries to disseminate American ways. These days, the pedagogical model seems to be different. A new emphasis on the local, on how US institutions must learn from diverse cultures, their histories, and their languages, and bring all that learning back to the United States so that its institutions can improve themselves with reference to these exotic others, is much more characteristic of current higher-education administrative rhetoric. Indeed, the juxtaposition of close reading and the global university may seem at first to be a juxtaposition of incommensurates.