Tag Archives: Bucknell
I have a conflict. I can’t go. I have a meeting. I have to be with my kids.
Read on to take the poll!
These are the various reason why students, staff, and others can not come to various worthy events at Bucknell. For example, Tuesday nights are the one day without classes at night (lol except Friday, Saturday, and Sunday). So the Bucknell Forum, as well as others, use Tuesday as the ideal night for these events. Guess what? It is also when students schedule their various clubs and organizations including the powerful Greek orgs.
At the same time, I have ahd students avoid 4-5 or 02-5 commitments because of sports practices or games/events.
Meanwhile, no one likes 8 a.m. classes.
And, most weeks there are 2-3 events which I would like to participate in but can’t because they are in the 7-9 at night window when I am with my family.
The schedule rules. It is not sexy. It is not “cool” like smart boards in classrooms, service-learning, or student-led expeditions to tag pythons for an ecology class. However, I suggest that in terms of making life better AND using current resources better (as in more attendance at more events), the schedule is the most over-looked and also most urgent area of reform.
I have imagined various STRUCTURAL changes to the schedule which might help lessen some of these inherent conflicts. Continue reading
Some ideas I am including in my syllabus for today about how to manage technology:
Digital Copies and Classroom participation. The reality is we live in a mixed technology environment of digital formats for materials and concrete classrooms of boards, overheads, and each other. I am figuring out how to balance the two. These policies are a work in progress.
1) Expect you to be ready to discus and share the materials. You will have to figure out what this means for you.
2) You may bring a laptop. I reserve the right to ask you to put it away for certain activities. I reserve the right to call you out for letting it distract you in class.
3) I expect you to be good citizens of the information world. Pay for protected copyright. Respect other content’s creators by citing them, ALWAYS. Any image, presentations, link or whatever should be somehow noted or cited depending on the context of the usage. SO, on a power point lisde, pu a little note at the bottom. On a blog post, hyperlink. On a paper use normal citations, and so on.
Two of my great former students, James and Paige, organized this!
Lewisburg’s Cheers to Charity
This event was originally inspired by Professor Johnson Cramer’s Strategies and Policy management class. We are a group of six seniors who aspired not only to exceed in the class, but also achieve a lasting effect on the Bucknell and Lewisburg communities. Our original goals were to: find a way in which we could raise a substantial donation towards a charitable cause, stimulate the local business in downtown Lewisburg, and bring together the Lewisburg community with Bucknell’s staff and students. We aim to reach these goals by hosting a downtown event called “Lewisburg’s Cheers to Charity” scheduled for Saturday, April 10th. We have partnered with various downtown businesses such as The Bull Run Inn, Temperance House, Brasserie Louis, and the Towne Tavern to ensure various discounts on food and beverages during the event. The event will be open to all customers and donations are strongly encouraged. This event will be co-sponsored by Jessica Hess and the Multicultural Student Services. While event t-shirts will be on sale to all customers, the shirt will not gain you admittance into the establishments during bar hours. The rules and restrictions of each individual establishment will apply to all patrons. This includes presenting a photo ID in order to gain admittance during bar hours.
We feel that this event will not only benefit the Haiti relief effort, but the Lewisburg and Bucknell communities as a whole.
The following locations will be participating in the event and offering specials on food and drinks:
Bull Run Inn (12 pm – 2am) – $1.00 Lionshead, Specials on Rum & Cokes, Beer pitchers, and Wings
Temperance House (5pm-10pm) – $4 LIT Specials, $5.00 Appetizer Sampler
Brasserie Louis (5pm-10pm) – 2-for-1 Appetizers, $4.00 Martinis, $4.00 Beer Sampler
Towne Tavern (12pm- 2am) – $1.00 Bud Lights and 1/2 price Apps all day, $2.75 Vodka drinks from 10:00-12:00 pm
The Cheers to Charity Event Staff
Elaine Pagels, the noted Biblical scholar and author, came to BU this week. I was super excited as I find the early history of Christianity fascinating. How did such a marginalized sect become so dominant? I had heard Pagels a few times on the usual suspects: Fresh Air, Bill Moyer’s, and so on. Add to that the intoxicating aroma of fire and brimstone and I had high hopes for a mind-blowing lecture.
I was not alone! Trout Hall was packed to the gills. Curious students? Nervous Christians? Wild-eyed present day prophets? All there!
The lecture was a bit of a flop. She presented three interesting questions, in this order (which is also the order of interest to me):
- What is Revelations about?
- How did it make it into the canonical Bible?
- What explains its enduring popularity?
The strength of the lecture were her clear explanation of the content of Revelations. She had several images from Western art from the 15th century to now. She explained that Revelations was anti-Roman propaganda meant to counter Roman propaganda. Babylon, in Revelations the source of worldly, political, profane, hedonistic power and society, is a stand in for Rome and is then shown to be an ally or pawn of monstrous, dark forces. I am not a religion scholar, but I thought this point was already well-established.
As to the other two questions, she did not get very far in exploring or answering them. All right, that is excusable. She did say it was a work in progress. She went to Q&A after about 50 minutes or so. She did not really engage in dialogue with anyone and her response was usually a variation of “I’ll look into that.” Disappointing.
You would think someone as visible as she is, writing on such touchy topics as religion and original texts would be used to lots of challenging questions from the folks who take the Bible VERY seriously. The man asking a question before me really got into his rambling groove. The long beard and switching between Hebrew (I think) and English added to his modern-day Ezekiel quality. To me, and most, it was incomprehensible. I think he was saying that that Ctaholic church is the “whore of Babylon.” In fact, it is the Catholic Church literally, that the author of Revelations is doing the future and not his own times. Anyway, the whole audience went from polite indulgence to awkward silence. I almost asked him to wrap up after five minutes of this before Pagels cut him off. She needed to step in earlier and politely dispatch him. Take a page from Obama v Republicans!
The upside of his ramble was it gave me time to formulate my own suggestion to her about the staying power of Revelations. Caveat: I am not a religion scholar and this is all off the top of my head. Take it or leave it, but I won’t be doing more witht his than what I write here.
Premise 1: Revelations is full of multi-valent symbolims. This is part of its appeal. The reader can see many possibilities in any one image.
Premise 2: Revelations is about the tension between socio-political struggles of this world and how to understand them from a religious worldview.
My assertion: For any present day reader, Revelations DOES NOT MAKE SENSE. I mean, it can not cohere in its entirety. It offers the illusion of total allegory with the first two premises. But it can never really deliver. So, it’s very nonsensical essence is part of its enduring popularity.
Furthermore, there is a deep resonance with the ultimate incoherence of the text and the inability of interpreting it to reach a final resolution because the socio-political struggles of the messy world of human affairs also never really resolve. I heard someone quoting some British politician recently who said that all political careers end in failure. The point: there is never any enduring permanent victory for any side or actor in any of the many struggles that define our wordly existence.
Revelations can not make sense in terms of a final conclusion. The real world also can not make sense.
But the multi-valent imagery and symbolism invites the reader to try to wrangle coherence out of Revelations, and by extension the real world. The result is that the act of reading becomes an act of heroic interpretation. The heroic interpretation then becomes a binding moment. The reader becomes their own prophet, becomes one who sees the implications of the future in the present.
Revelations is popular because it doesn’t make sense.
My wife, Virginia Zimmerman, starts her own blog about Children’s Literature, Victorian literature, writing, and teaching. She launches with a nice post explaining a quotation from CS Lewis.