Category Archives: teaching

The Devil: Himself

I was part of that generation of young people who arguably got to experience Bill Cosby at the best possible time; Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids was still in reruns when I was in my earliest years, and the first years of The Cosby Show started right when I got to watch prime time television on a regular basis. My parents already owned a couple of Cosby’s comedy albums on vinyl, and I kept picking up more of them on cassette tape when I…

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Scholared and Kept

As I was finishing up my master’s degree in 2006, I had almost no interest in pursuing a doctorate. I’d enjoyed getting my BA in Creative Writing at the University of Toledo, and I’d definitely had a lot of good classes in graduate school there, but I’d only really stayed on because of the assistantship they’d offered me (I’d been accepted to an MFA programme in California, but they couldn’t offer me any financial assistance), and as soon as I got the opportunity to be…

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Can’t Start Over

One of the books I’ve been recommending almost non-stop since I first read it is Annette Lareau’s Unequal Childhoods, her ethnographic study of how socioeconomic class affects parenting styles, which in turn affect how children develop. Not only was Unequal Childhoods very useful for me in my research for my next book, but I was able to apply its concepts to my teaching approaches immediately, as I work to find ways to help my students adjust to the demands of college life. More recently, I…

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Fail Points

Electoral College in the 2020 presidential election (Ballotpedia) The more byzantine machinations of how America’s systems of governance work can be fascinating, if you’re into that sort of thing. Over the past twenty years, though, everything from the Florida recount after the 2000 presidential election, to the large numbers of faithless electors who cast votes they weren’t supposed to cast when the Electoral College met four years ago, has given many Americans far too much of an education about those mechanisms than they ever would…

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No More Balls to the Face

[The following blog contains mentions of bullying and suicide.] Free college is a ‘socialist takeover of higher education’ and student debt cancellation is ‘wrong,’ Betsy DeVos says (MarketWatch via MSN) I’ve never been inside of a ball pit. By the time I first heard of ball pits, I was already outside of what most people would consider their target age group, and I don’t think I even knew the location of any ball pits in Toledo until after I turned eighteen. This used to make…

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