Entries Tagged as 'Education'

Sunday, July 5th, 2009

Oxford Air

Here in Oxford for a three-day conference (Making Sense of Health, Illness and Disease) and to present a paper, “AIDS and the Paradigms of Dissent,” I began my visit by attending a concert in Exeter College chapel performed by Charivari Agréable and ended tonight with another concert by the same. The advantage of visiting a musical place (Oxford) in a […]

Thursday, July 2nd, 2009

Where Is One So Weak? (Oxford Version)

Where is one so weak as in a bookstore? — a theme of a blog posting last year. I’m in Oxford presenting a paper at a global health conference at Mansfield College. Arriving a day early (on purpose) I spent the day wandering the streets and browsing in bookstores. Books and Oxford have been closely associated […]

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

Ask Amy: Goverment Is Good!

Douglas J. Amy, professor of Politics at Mount Holyoke College had a problem: An established scholar with three scholarly books on his curriculum vitae, Amy decided that he had another book to write but one that would reach a wide general audience. However, when he wrote the book, he found no trade press (which would […]

Monday, November 17th, 2008

The Oracle Is Not In

Proctoring an exam on Saturday in the Information Technology Engineering Building, I discovered the office of The Oracle. Faculty and professional staff are unionized here, so apparently The Oracle does not work on Saturday. I had so wanted to meet her since I had read so much about her for years.

Sunday, July 27th, 2008

On Golden Page: Old Poop, New “Readers”

“Don’t be such an old poop!” Ethel Thayer to Norman Thayer in Mark Rydell’s film, On Golden Pond, based on Ernest Thompson’s play (screenplay by Ernest Thompson). Well I have become an old poop, perhaps, but the loons are not very welcoming. It is the prerogative of people in mid-life to lament the declension of […]

Sunday, July 20th, 2008

What Do Faculty Want?

A friend of mine, who has recently accepted the presidency of a college, writes me asking, What do faculty want in a president? What faculty want in a president is . . . –Someone who sees, acknowledges, embraces, and celebrates the best within the culture and history of the college, and who is willing to […]

Sunday, March 23rd, 2008

Sex and the Married Governor

The week that Eliot Spitzer came clean (pun intended) about his creative financing of sessions with a high-end sex worker, my students in the second semester of a survey of world literature course were looking at Freud’s account of his patient “Dora.” I’ve configured the world lit course as an exploration (I just typed and […]

Wednesday, March 5th, 2008

North for Spring Break: A Working Holiday

When most campus denizens have headed south for spring break, I have perversely traveled north, to do some consulting work for a research-intensive flagship state university. I am engaged in faculty professional development with professors in a health science field in order to help them with professional scholarly writing (e.g. articles, grant applications). Although science […]

Thursday, February 14th, 2008

Right-Wing Coup Deposes William & Mary Prez Gene Nichol

This week we learned that the well respected and beloved (though controversial) president of the College of William and Mary, Gene Nichol, would not have his contract renewed by the Board of Visitors (headed by the college’s rector, the refried Bush administrator Michael K. Powell [son of the Good Soldier and former Bush Secretary of […]

Sunday, February 3rd, 2008


I recently made a consulting visit to a respected university school of nursing where I found a useful research framework employed by the school and its faculty, a taxonomy of “transitions,” including not only health/illness transitions but also developmental (life stage), organizational, and situational (in the life or career of an individual). In this schema, […]

Friday, January 11th, 2008

Stepping Stone State University

Our local newspaper has announced the sudden (but not unexpected) news that the president of one of our two state universities in town (I’ll call it Stepping Stone State University) is leaving for another university presidency after seven years on the job. We are fortunate to have two respected state universities in town: a historically […]

Thursday, January 3rd, 2008

Where Do Americans Go for Information?

According to the results of a recently released survey by the Pew Internet and American Life Project, they don’t go to television and radio to find information in order to solve a problem (or only 16% do). A substantial majority of respondents (58%) claimed the Internet as their source. Many of them are using public […]

Thursday, January 3rd, 2008

E-Textbooks? Really. We Mean It This Time. Seriously.

Textbook expenses in higher education have come under increasing scrutiny in recent years, with the burden of managing costs being placed mostly on professors (as if we were responsible for textbooks’ costs). Why are they so expensive? In part because publishers insist on coming out with new editions every three to five years, even in […]

Thursday, January 3rd, 2008

Humanities Matter

The recent annual Modern Language Association (MLA) meeting took up the theme, The Humanities at Work in the World. For the uninitiated, the humanities are those fields of human labor, knowledge, and creativity that include languages and literatures, fine and performing arts, and history (if you don’t call history a social science). The MLA scholars […]

Saturday, December 29th, 2007

On the Third Day He Arose

On the third day he arose at 6:00 (more than an hour before dawn) in order to arrive on time in the hotel conference room where the panel on which he was presenting a paper was to convene at 8:30. (He hates waking up in the dark.) Unfortunately, the Hyatt Regency was designed either by […]

Friday, December 28th, 2007

Jeopardy Answer: Graduate School

Jeopardy question: What does graduate school prepare you for? I’ve just spent what is always the two most rewarding hours at the annual Modern Language Association (MLA) meeting (now in day two): volunteering for the “Chats with an Editor” booth hosted by the Council of Editors of Learned Journals (CELJ). This annual service provides one-on-one counseling […]

Friday, December 28th, 2007

Fiat Lux: MLA on the Second Day

I hate having to wake up in the dark, a recovered memory perhaps of the summer between high school and college when I had to wake up at 4:00 am to work in a sand pit loading sand dug from the alluvial plain of Anne Arundel County, Maryland, into dump trucks that hauled ass down […]

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

God Said, Let There Be MLA: On The First Day

Who else but thousands of scholars in language and literature would fly from around the world to a cold northern North American city between Christmas and New Year’s (as if American air travel were not bad enough) in order to confabulate, cruise, interview job supplicants . . . I mean “applicants,” be interviewed as job […]