Friday, February 27, 2009

The decline of civilization...


http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/25/books/25human.html?pagewanted=1
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Brilliant idea. The thing is, that no matter how much you amp up technology and other fields of study, to "produc[e] enough trained engineers and scientists [that are] essential to America’s economic vitality, national defense and health care," without the humanities it becomes a hollow movement. Ideas and innovations depend upon a student's experience in the humanities...

For example:
Albert Einstein....
"Einstein's gifts inevitably resulted in his dwelling much in intellectual solitude and, for relaxation, music played an important part in his life." (http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/physics/laureates/1921/einstein-bio.html)

Bill Gates...
"In addition to his love of computers and software, Gates founded Corbis, which is developing one of the world's largest resources of visual information - a comprehensive digital archive of art and photography from public and private collections around the globe." (http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/exec/billg/bio.mspx)

Carl Sagan...
"A Pulitzer Prize winner for the book The Dragons of Eden: Speculations of the Evolution of Human Intelligence, Dr. Sagan was the author of many bestsellers, including Cosmos, which became the bestselling science book ever published in English. The accompanying Emmy and Peabody award-winning television series has been seen by a billion people in sixty countries. He received twenty-two honorary degrees from American colleges and universities for his contributions to science, literature, education, and the preservation of the environment, and many awards for his work on the long-term consequences of nuclear war and reversing the nuclear arms race. His novel, Contact, is now a major motion picture." (http://www.carlsagan.com/)

My list could go on for a very long time, but I will leave us with this:
The fields of "vocation" -- as the New York Times article puts it -- have always been inextricably linked. Hundreds of years ago, literary pioneers moved from transcription by monks to the miracle of the printing press. It isn't so different from today...now, writers who might never have emerged out of the imagination of a dream of being published now use modern technology to publish online, provoking conversation and idea sharing that hasn't occurred since the heyday of the 17th/18th century coffee houses and salons.

Humanities are vital to our existence. Pass it on.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Monday, February 23, 2009

I need a nap.

It is midterm time again and that means hectic grading schedules and no social life.

Friday, February 06, 2009

New Post for an Old Blog.

Well, I haven't posted anything in ages...I don't really know why other than the thought of posting makes me tired sometimes! I run several other blogs (school/student related) and once changes/additions have been made to those, I really don't feel like adding anything here.

However, I will go ahead and give some updates:
1. Miracle of miracles: I have a publication in the works!
2. I am going back to England (for a whole month!!!) this summer with the U of A study abroad program. I will be the graduate assistant on the trip and I am so happy and honored!
3. Comps, due to the publication deadline, have been pushed back yet again. So, I will probably take them in the fall.
4. I competed in NaNoWriMo and now have 98 pages of a novel (VERY rough draft).
5. I have a facebook account that I actually check...though I am not sure how I feel about it. So, if any of you have facebook accounts, look me up. I am under "Susan" and not "Susie"...but feel free to call me "Susie."
6. I am teaching literature again and I am liking everything about my students and classes except for the time that we have to meet for class.
7. Dad is doing well, in general.
8. My mother retired in September!
9. I just went on my first paranormal investigation (though it wasn't very professional!). We laughed most of the time!

Well, that is all that I can think of at this point, as far as updates. Some news/pop culture issues that are really annoying me:
1. The woman who just had the 8 babies.
2. Jon and Kate Plus 8. (That woman irritates me. She really needs to calm down and let her kids be kids. The twin called Maddie is a time bomb...I have never seen a child so angry.)
3. The Duggars and the wedding episode. (Though I don't have a huge problem with this group, I do think that the oldest boy is a bit full of himself. The fact that such a big deal was made about his new wife submitting to him really made me laugh. He looks about 12. Ugh. And some things were said on that episode that, well, just shouldn't be said.)
4. The woman who just had the 8 babies.
5. The woman who just had the 8 babies.
6. YES...the woman who just had the 8 babies. (It really makes me upset. If she is so fired up about having children, why not just adopt? In California there are PLENTY of children who need good homes. Instead, she put her life and the lives of 8 children at risk and she can't possibly afford them. Any media outlet who gives her money is crazy. This has to stop. She only did it for the publicity.)
7. Tatiana del Toro on American Idol. Someone needs to tell her off.

Pop Culture things I like:
1. The First 48: I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this show. And, they finally came to film in Birmingham! (though I am not sure that is really positive...)
2. Paranormal State: I think Ryan is so cute, though way too young for me.
3. Gordon Ramsay's: "The F Word," "Hell's Kitchen," and "Kitchen Nightmares."
4. The BBC show (now off the air for the most part, at least in the US) "My Family."
5. AND, last but not least: Patrick Swayze's "The Beast." This is a great show. Very violent and intense, but great. I also love that Patrick is fighting so hard against his cancer, not curling up to die. Fight to the death, Patrick! He is one tough guy and I love it!

Well, that is about it right now. Still, even though I resorted to lists, I wrote more than I have in a really long time! Yea!