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April 18, 2010 - 11:28pm
A thoughtful correspondent writes: I'm in a humanities dept. at a very good SLAC. One of our faculty members is retiring soon, and so our departmental meetings have been focusing (in ten-minute snatches, unfortunately....despite meeting WEEKLY) on arguing for his replacement and determining what curricular lacunae might best be covered by this new person.
April 18, 2010 - 10:49pm
Recently I was asked to sit for an oral history interview covering my years at Hofstra. Since my years at Hofstra go back more than half the time the University has been in existence, I enjoyed talking about and recounting key happenings. At the same time, I was asked to suggest names for special 75th anniversary awards to those key individuals who made a major difference in the development of Hofstra from 1935 to the present. Having been here so many years, I was able to suggest individuals who clearly made a difference but who are also mostly forgotten today.
April 18, 2010 - 10:44pm
Ann Zimmerman reports in The Wall Street Journal that, thanks in large part to a viral campaign by female computer engineers, Computer Engineer Barbie will be one of two new models in Mattel's "I Can Be..." line. (The other will be TV Anchor Barbie, elected by young girls around the world.) Here's what she will look like, according to Zimmerman:
April 16, 2010 - 4:37am
What should a college do when a professor fails 90 percent of the students in an intro class?Apparently, at LSU the answer is to remove the professor unilaterally, mid-semester. The comments to the IHE story are about 90 percent from faculty trading in the worst anti-administration stereotyping, laced with an intoxicating brew of outrage and moral superiority. But they really miss the story.Based on the article, I can see heaping piles of wrong on all sides.
April 15, 2010 - 11:33pm
There’s an academic family around these parts, it’s said, who watch all the Jane Austen films together every Thanksgiving break. That there might be such a family gives me something else to be thankful for. But I wonder what their focus is? All the recent BBC films? All the Pride & Prejudices, going back to 1940? According to Sue Parrill, author of Jane Austen on Film and Television: A Critical Study of the Adaptations, there have been 33 films made of the novels.
April 15, 2010 - 8:33pm
So, drawing on the putative thoughts in the last two posts, one of the problems universities face in trying to become sustainability leaders comes to the fore.If corporate influence (in society, on campus, wherever) is one of the contributing factors to ecological, economic and societal unsustainability but corporations are major donors/partners whose participation makes campus projects (including sustainability-related projects) possible, . . .
April 15, 2010 - 7:37pm
Once, when I was in high school, I must have said something that particularly exasperated one of my teachers. She took a deep breath and looked out at me in the classroom (middle seat, second row) and said “Rosemarie, do you know what you are? You are in intellectual iconoclast.”
April 14, 2010 - 10:04pm
Last week a colleague and I gave a talk to new faculty on work-life balance. It is part of series of forums for first year tenure-track faculty sponsored by our Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning. While I was flattered to be asked, I was also a bit nervous. Like most of us, my ability to juggle work and life varies from day to day. Yet I was also shy to admit that there are times when I am, gasp, not working. Academia fosters a culture of workaholism, and folks who challenge this hegemony are often labeled less serious. “Competitive martyrdom,” a friend calls it.
April 14, 2010 - 8:45pm
In 2025, when book publishers look back to try to understand why their business became first disintermediated and then displaced, the prevailing sentiment will be one of regret. They will ask themselves: "How did we fail to learn from the example of the music industry and newspaper business? Why didn't we take advantage of new technologies instead of fighting them? How did we manage to fail to create a new generation of book readers and book buyers?"


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