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Dear Habermas
About Us - Susan's Archive

Current Issue:
Volume 20, No. 10, Week of July 25, 2004

Summer Re-Organization of Site in Progress
Please use the California State University, Dominguez Hills Mirror Site for the next few weeks.
Updating Indices, including Topic Index and Site Index
Organizing new material to fit into visual sociology and visual criminology context.
jeanne, Web Technicienne, June 11, 2004; still reorganizing. July 16, 2004

Love 1A
Leo Buscaglia, with one of Jeanne's Unicorns

Illustration borrowing photo of Leo Buscaglia from his website.

When Was the Last Time You Saw a Unicorn . . ?
From Leo Buscaglia's Living, Loving and Learning, at p. 116.

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California State University, Dominguez Hills
University of Wisconsin, Parkside
Created: July 11, 2004
Latest Update: July 16, 2004

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Topic of the Week:

It's All Relative in My Metanarrative

Unicorns or Grace?
In Their Different Guises

July 18, 2004

Unicorns and Grace are lots more closely related in this world than you might think. Leo Buscaglia searched for unicorns. No, that's not right. He knew he had already found them. And they're wonderful creatures. They reproduce on love. That's how it happens that they didn't become extinct in the last thirty years. Oh, lots of them were trapped and killed by foolish decisions made by leaders unsuited to the task, but love, Leo Buscaglia's kind, and Scott Peck's kind, and Alfie Kohn's kind, and Patrick Tierney's kind, and oh, so many others, kept them alive and well.

So what does Grace have to do with saving unicorns? Well, the Grace I'm talking about is the Grace freely given by God, but not to everyone. It's the grace you can't earn. Nothing you do can affect grace, for it is God's gift to you. Now, I have lots more trouble with that than with unicorns. But many religious people do believe that grace and hence, immortality, is given directly by God and we can't affect that decision or gift. And that leads to believing that this life is only preliminary to eternity with God, and so unimportant. And that leads to an unwillingness to redistribute the world's wealth, since what God has given is God's to give, and not for us to challenge or change. Though God does expect his creatures of grace to give chaarity willingly and out of love. But taxation and redistribution of wealth are definitely out according to this view, as I understand it.

Now, I think you all know my work well enough to know that I'm going to say that in my metanarrative, though we're each different, we're each deserving of grace as humans, as living creatures, and that includes Gaia, the Earth. In fact, I'd probably define grace that way. But a part of liberal education is trying to understand these whopping differences in how we think about wealth, the right to acquire more than we need, the right to keep what we acquire, and the rights, or not, depending on that definition of "grace," of other humans and living creatures to a just share in the resources of this world.


My first attempt at bringing these questions before all our classes and to our website can be found at Theology, Evolving through the Centuries From the perspective of Christian-Hebraic theology. I was preparing shared readings on Ruether, on Buscaglia, and that led me to this particular set of readings. We will follow through with other shared readings from different theological perspectives. This one just seemed closest to home, and a good place to start, since the US is largely a Christian country, with a Christian heritage, although we claim the right to a secular government. Such claims to secularism are at risk today, and so we must talk of them.

NEWS and Announcements:

Sneaky Strokes, "Good Dogs," and Compliments

Whenever something happens in class that works out well, that inspires you, that helps in studying, whatever, take a few minutes to send us an e-mail. We'll post it where all of us can learn from it, including other teachers. This is a new set of files, full of "good dogs" and unicorns and compliments, in the knowledge that we all need them, and the hope that by creating awareness of the good stuff in school, we can get it it grow into a greater percentage of what happens in our schools.

  • A sentence or two about what you want to share with us.
  • The name of the teacher whose class you were in.
  • The name of the class.
  • The name of the school. We're not picky. We'll honor teachers in any school, any level, even Sunday School. This might be a good idea to help young children learn to say "thank you" and encourage meaningful practice in all our schools. We could even start with pre-school. This is a skill needed in answerability. To discover that what you think matters is to end silencing. Even home schooling. You can send photos or drawings, too.

See the first entries at Kudos to Our Teachers and Ourselves: That Was Fun!

Then link to Shared Reading: Sneaky Strokes, "Good Dogs," and Compliments for some theory on why this is so important. You might also want to look at Leo Buscaglia's Living, Loving, and Learning.

Conference in New Orleans in September: Held Over

Debriefing the Naked Space Exhibit

Summer 2004 Project

This IS A Hypertext Project Map
For The Naked Space Exhibit "Freeing the Feminine Other" in May 2004
Link on Section Titles for Hypertext Poem and Contents.

Academic Support

  • SquiggleFinding Internet Resources

  • SquiggleEvaluating Internet Resources

    • Evaluating Hoax Email with samples, including an old one about charging for email that's going around again. Link updated March 29, 2004.
    • Evaluating Internet Resources Library Site at University of North Carolina. Don't forget to question. This is a good detailed source. Link checked March 29, 2004.
  • Using Academic Language and Visuals Effectively

    Merriam-Webster Dictionary Search:

    Today's Word: From the Word.A.Day Site

    Dictionary of Critical Sociology
    Maintained by Robert E. Mazur, Associate Professor, Iowa State University, Sociology.

    Words of Art: Front Page
    Wonderful Fine Arts dictionary at Okanagan University College in Canada.
    Will cover many of the terms social theory shares with literary theory.

    Citation Styles Citing Internet Sources for Social Science Papers: A Quick Note.

    APA Style Style sheet for Psychology. Good reference for proper rules of citation.

    Twenty-five Easy Steps Toward a Correctly-Formatted Paper or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love MLA by Keith O'Neill. Style sheet for humanities.

    Internet Mission Photography Archive

    and Careers

    • Job Potential:

    • Resumes:

    • Letters of Recommendation:

      • Letters of Recommendation: How to get me to respond to your request. Many of you need letters. If you will follow this format, I can do them quickly and make them good.
      • Dog Letters If you do not give me adequate information, but do manage to get my attention, you may end up with a dog letter. That is a letter that says that you work well with people, that you are enthusiastic, that you persist at getting things done, and that everyone likes you. Of course, my dog gets along well with people, brings his ball to them, is enthusiastic, and persists at getting them to take his ball. Everyone likes my dog. That's a dog letter. It's so general it could be about my dog. jeanne

    • Reports and Studies on Employment and the Job Market


    That Was Fun! Sneaky Strokes and Good Dogs

    Whenever something happens in class that works out well, that inspires you, that helps in studying, whatever, take a few minutes to send us an e-mail. We'll post it where all of us can learn from it, including other teachers.


    You can also send an email to the Who to Take Site:

    Creative Commons License
    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.