Monthly Archives: May 2008

When Do You Shelve a Course?

One of my courses this semester felt slightly off. I’ve taught this course enough times to see some variations in how and when the students are engaged by this material. This group seemed the least engaged I’ve seen. There were … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 2 Comments

Letting Go and Keeping Weird

I’ve had my finger hovering over the send button of an irritated email addressed to the Alumni Office at my alma mater, Wesleyan University, for about two weeks now. The main reason I don’t send it is that I would … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Swarthmore | 9 Comments

In My Day…

I seriously hate declension narratives. Anything that starts out with, “Once upon a time, there was a golden age, and then the barbarians came and wrecked it all…” gets me going for my guns. Even when it’s a reasonable enough … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 43 Comments

Research Notes: GI Joe

Sorting through some old papers in my version of spring cleaning, I found some notes I wrote while watching two episodes of the 80s version of GI Joe while I was working on Saturday Morning Fever. It was one of … Continue reading

Posted in Popular Culture | 6 Comments

The Summer Scorecard

1. This is the kind of issue my colleague Bob Rehak thinks about so very well, but I was really struck watching Prince Caspian at how poorly the WETA house style serves that film. The script was pretty decent considering … Continue reading

Posted in Popular Culture | 5 Comments

Slides and Chalkboards

I have two questions, both in reaction to Margaret Soltan’s insistent complaints about PowerPoint usage in university classrooms. 1. How common is repeated, regular PowerPoint usage by professors in higher ed classrooms? (E.g., not the occasional usage to show visual … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 22 Comments

I Agree!

I don’t usually post simple applause entries, but Patricia Nelson Limerick pretty much speaks for me in every respect in this column for the Chronicle of Higher Education. I think she’s particularly correct when she argues that the “lament of … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 1 Comment

The Wrong End?

One of the basic problems with Culture War 2.0 as it involves higher education is that both the critics and defenders of academia spend so much time focused on a small number of elite and well-resourced institutions. There are questions … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 5 Comments

Swarthmore News

Swarthmore’s president, Al Bloom, announced today that at the end of his next contract in August of 2009, he will be ending his service at president of the college. This is a big deal for all of us. He’s the … Continue reading

Posted in Swarthmore | Comments Off on Swarthmore News

Brains in Maine

I just got back from an engaging visit to the College of the Atlantic. Even though its curricular project and general atmosphere are 180 degrees opposite from St. John’s College, I think it occupies a similar place in the universe … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | 6 Comments