Remember him? The man who either deserted or was captured and held captive in Afghanistan for nearly five years and was released last spring? Richard Benedetto wonders why the U.S. news media have completely dropped the Bowe Bergdahl story, and so do I because I want to see how the story ends! Regular readers will … Continue reading Whatever happened to Bowe Bergdahl?
Kate Cohen writes that the most terrifying costume on Halloween is a little boy who dresses up as a Disney Princess or Wonder Woman, at least in the minds of his parents or other adults in his community: Would you let your son be Frozen’s Elsa for Halloween? Care.com reports that 65 percent of people it surveyed … Continue reading The scariest of them all? Little boys who want to dress up as girls for Halloween
Friendly greeting! Comments on the local weather, and humorous story about my weekend plans. Here we go: Denver second grade teacher Austen Kassinger says that struggle is inherent to learning, and that parents need to push their children to achieve by owning that struggle. After spending an entire evening working through five long-division problems in … Continue reading Education round-up: the suck it up edition
Did any of you see Tenured Radical’s post yesterday about the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue 2014, “Happiness is a Cold, Plastic Doll?” This year it features Barbie on the cover, but the same old soft-core porn inside. The point of TR’s post was to comment on the cultural significance of SI’s annual swimsuit issue. She … Continue reading What I learned from the comments thread at Tenured Radical
Eric Foner, a distinguished historian of the Reconstruction-era of the United States, makes a terrific point in an interview with David Cutler at The Atlantic. (My apologies if the title of the article is his takeaway point: “‘You Have to Know History to Actually Teach It.’” ) To wit, Foner says: I tell my students … Continue reading Effective history teaching: passion and deep knowledge (and stay classy!)
Next week, I’ll start teaching a Senior Seminar called Life and Death in Early America. In reality, it’s mostly about death. I’ve thrown in some stuff about disease, dirt, starvation, cannibalism, abortion, and contraception, just to keep things lively (so to speak), but the fact is that there is a fascinating new literature on death … Continue reading Why the fictional death of an imaginary girl is a better story than the actual death of a real young woman
As I predicted earlier this week, the sneering, sexist dismissals of Hillary Clinton are back, baby. And just like in 2007 and 2008, it’s not right-wingers leading the charge–it’s people on the so-called “progressive” side of things. Meghan Daum writes in the Chicago Tribune today: Clinton’s finale could hardly have been more dramatic. After falling … Continue reading Hillary Clinton still too old, sick, and worst of all, unattractive
Did anyone else read this provocative nothingburger of an essay? Michael Bérubé on “Why I Resigned the Paterno Chair:” I read the Freeh report the morning it was released and proceeded to ignore every news-media outlet’s request to comment. A producer for National Public Radio’s All Things Considered called my English-department office, my office at … Continue reading So exactly why did you resign, again?
Now, this is how you build a national reputation–prominent and flattering placement in free media, rather than building $250 million stadiums. NPR’s Renee Montagne aired two interviews yesterday and today on Morning Edition featuring people connected to Colorado State University and its local community. Yesterday morning, she spoke with CSU Political Science majors, and today … Continue reading Baa Ram U. featured again on NPR
Imagine, if you will, that my university recruited and hired a superstar professor and paid her $150,000 a year. (This would make her among the highest paid of all faculty here, I am sure.) Imagine that this professor then issued failing grades to 80% of her students, failed to publish 80% of her books and … Continue reading What would happen to faculty if we failed 80% of the time? Or, being a $1.5 million coach means never having to say you’re sorry.