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Previous Issue: Volume 25, No.11 , Week of October 16, 2005
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University of Wisconsin, Parkside
Created: October 18, 2005
Latest Update: October 22, 2005
Topic of the Week: Newspapers
How do we trust our newspapers?
Sorry. Here are the references on Proposition 65 I forgot to put up: Proposition 65: Warnings of Toxic Chemicals in Products. Please warn your friends and families and neighbors. I have some printed labels and we'll have materials to make little cards with the warnings. Wisconsin, please warn everyone you know, too, even though there's no Proposition 65 warning requirement in Wisconsin. Just knowing of its existence will make us more aware of protecting our children and women of child-bearing age. jeanne
Now, for this week's topic: trusting our newspapers. I had a wonderful discussion last week (or the week before) with a couple of our students. We were talking about newspapers and how much I rely on them to tie current events into the theory and practice of sociological theory. Both students "confessed" that they don't read newspapers. I say "confessed," because they both acknowledged that what we are learning from current events is stuff they want and need to know. But there's just not enough time in their worlds to read a paper. They're struggling with work and school, and achieving independence in an economic age that doesn't allow genuine early career entry for many.
So happens both these students were about thirty. That's the age group that has convinced newspapers and other media that newsprint is on its way out, that they must turn to the computer. I would like us to raise a collective voice against that conclusion, which I consider spurious. Both these young (compared to seventy) students do care about the detail we can get from newspaper accounts, that we can't glean from traditional media accounts. Neither of them would be searching for deep information on current events on their computer, because they don't have the time for it. Both told of there being newspapers in their families. One said her father wouldn't miss the daily newspaper with his coffee. But she doesn't usually peruse it. Recently, both have begun to take the newspaper into the bathroom. A humble beginning. But a beginning.
One of our goals on Dear Habermas is to serve as an introduction to the importance of newspapers in keeping up with a world over which we have minimal but important control. We get to vote. We get to complain vociferously, often in demonstrations. And we're trying to develop the habits of governance discourse, that would strengthen the minimal control each of us has. Both students agreed that they saw the role of the newspaper, even above the political analysis on TV, as the written word permits us more time to ponder, and is a reminder to which we can return later. Both also said that as they established their own residences and lives, they would subscribe to a newspaper they respected and trusted to provide that kind of understanding. We reckoned that by about 35 they'd both be subscribing.
We'll talk about this during the week. And if you agree with the view that you, too, will one day have time and value the role that investigative journalists in well-recognized papers play, then join us in e-mailing that information to the newspapers. I'll call the L.A. Times and the N.Y. Times to see if they would let some of us subscribe as a group to share the papers. We need them. And we need them to reconsider there approach to GenX as subscribers.
Second point: how do we trust our newspapers. William A. Scott gave a pretty meaningful answer to that in Values and Organizations, some twenty years or so ago. He said that if you want to test for values, then check out groups that represent those values. For example, the girl scouts, or the boy scouts, or a church, or a political group. I read the New York Times because it represents for me the values I want to share. I expect it to be read by readers like me, who share my concern for safety nets and community. For that same reason, I no longer subscribe to the Wall Street Journal, although I think there is good reporting there. They just don't share my values. Same reason for subscribing to the Los Angeles Times: we share values on approaches to poverty (Steve Lopez's recent series of articles.) and to safety nets, and sometimes even in politics.
Trust comes as the paper holds to those values. And so the New York Times was upsetting to me because of the Valerie Plame leak and Judith Miller. Would the NY Times give me the news as I needed it to understand the CIA leak, or would the NY Times protect the Bush administration? To this end I am posting two articles: one on Fitzpatrick, the prosecuter leading the investigation of that leak, and the other an apology by the executive editor for having supported Judith Miller as against telling readers what we need and demand to know. That's how important our trust in the newspaper is. Today, further links are often provided in the article or on the Website to let us go more in depth if we need to. But at least, I want to trust what I read.
Newspapers are an important source of learning. I don't have the time to read every book whose material I consider essential to informed citizenship. I have to rely on someone. Newspapers rely on their reputation for that. Blogs may be a substitute for some, but not unless you're really comfortable with the computer. Help support our newspapers. We need them, and will need them for some years to come, especially since the ownership of an up-to-date computer is a class issue. The poor don't have access. But the poor could have access to papers, especially if we all made that a goal. Informed poor, like informed others, make better decisions in their contributions to governance.
- Backup of NY Times article on Prosecutor Fitz in the CIA name-leak case.
- Backup of NY Times executive editor's apology for unthinking support of Judith Miller, which led lots of readers, like me, to not trust a paper with whom we thought we had shared values. I was gratefuil for the apology. I needed it.
NEWS, Announcements, and
Current Events Discussion Topics:
Revised Syllabi for jeanne's Fall 2005 Classes
Instructions for Tutoring Requests and to Upload Learning Records
New Discussion Index, starrted with Rebekah's review of American History X and Life Without Parole.
- New Yahoo Group: Transparent Learning Measurement
We have created this site for students who have questions, would like someone to help by reading over their work, would like some practice in using the site, aren't clear on a specific concept and would like one of us to explain it in different words, etc.
This is also the site on which you should ask me to put up a specific Message No. that you would like to use for your learning record. This'll make it much easier for me and Susan than trying to pull your messages for learning records from the general discussion.
For instructions see Tutoring:
- Revised syllabi for jeanne's Fall 2005 classes, given registration problems. The lectures will be rearranged by topic. The notes by date given. The texts by text. But I won't be able to do that until Friday.
- Learning Records for jeanne's classes, Fall 2005:
Rosters for Learning Records
Updated to Late Add List - everyone should be on roster this time - jeanne
- Learning Records for Statistics, Sociology 220-01, Fall 2005 Updated October 15, 2005.
- Learning Records for Moot Court, Sociology 370-01, Fall 2005 Updated October 15, 2005.
- Learning Records for Sociology of the Helping Professions, Sociology 386-01, Fall 2005 Updated October 15, 2005.
- Learning Records for Special Topics: Love 1A, Sociology 395-01, Fall 2005 Updated October 15, 2005.
- Learning Records for Graduate Special Topics: Love 1A, Sociology 595-02, Fall 2005 Updated October 15, 2005
- Instructions page for joining transform_dom and transspan
- Link for joining transform_dom: Fixed this link. jeanne
Famous People and Concepts We Should Have Heard Of, But Often Haven't.
- Names to Know when Reading about Postmodernism, Postmodern Therapies, or PMTH Good quick reference list.
- Herbart - learning theorist
- Simon Rodia of the Watts Towers in Los Angeles
- The Watts Towers. Where are they? What do they represent? How do they establish one alternative meaning for community art?
- Herbart's apperceptive mass. Herbart's term for the mind as we understand it. Herbart envisioned every experience from fetus-stage to death entering into this apperceptive mass, whether we understand it, accept it, are aware of it, or not. Experiences, once experienced, cannot be erased. As they crop up, brought to consciousness by a stirring of the apperceptive mass by some event, or by memory, we may find our reactions, beliefs, or statements illogical, as we are not aware of the presence of such experiences, especially from childhood, or because they were peripheral to some other experience we were concentrating on. compare this to Rabelais' Frozen Words and Discourse Lecture and references.frozen words.
Jeanne's Lectures for Fall 2005
- Lectures, Lecture Notes, Text Lectures
- Fall 2005 Letters to My Students: jeanne's World and Welcome to It
- Application Lectures on Current Events in Chronological Order
- Lecture Notes in Class Order
- Text Summaries in Text Order
- Self Tests in I. Activites Order; II. Class Order and; III. Text Order
- On Making a Box
- Family Control and Child Violence Meanwhile seeIndex and articles on issue.Will revise as soon as I can catch up. jeanne
Lectures Posted for Week of October 23, 2005
- Backup of NY Times article on Prosecutor Fitz in the CIA name-leak case. Original Article: Leak Prosecutor Is Called Exacting and Apolitical
- Lecture 18: Program Disorder At Clinic, Hurdles to Clear Before Medicaid Care By Richard Pérez-Peña Backup. On the backup I have been highlighting passages. We want to talk about the issues raised there and in the rest of the article. I've kept this up for now, especially since Florida has just received permission from the federal government to limit the amount that can be spent on each person under Medicaid. Safety nets are falling by the wayside faster than I can post the issues. I think the Florida article came out on Saturday or Friday in the NY Times.
- Index for Text Lectures
- Introduction: Everything Bad Is Good for You Johnson defines what he calls the Sleeper Curve: "[the] kind of education[that] is not happening in classrooms or museums; it's happening in living rooms and basements; on PCs and televisions screens."
- Index for Discussion Pieces
- Discussion: On Investing Love in a Corrupted System Started new file on basis of Rebekah's comparison of American History X and Life Without Parole. Couldn't resist adding Michael Witkofski's work from March 2000.Michael Witkofski's New Skin Revisited from March 2000
- The Watts Towers
(Robert Lachman / Los Angeles Times)
The reason the city doesn't try to make a cultural icon out of the towers,
says a LACMA curator, is because of the people who live in Watts.
(Perry C. Riddle / LAT)
Can the towers save Watts?
http://www.latimes.com/features/printedition/magazine/la-tm-towers43oct23,1,1324924.story By Sara Catania. Towers of Power in Los Angeles Times Magazine, October 23, 2005.Backup. "Simon Rodia's masterwork is inseparable from its site on a dead-end street in Watts. Which is another good reason to stop ignoring it." On defining, protecting, and providing access to community art.
Photography by Cisco Dietz © of the
Chiapas of Day of the Dead.
- History of Day of the Dead AZCentral.com. Good source, suggstions for arts and crafts.
- What do Mexicans celebrate on the "Day of the Dead?" by Ricardo J. Salvador. I found this on the school websites of Iowa State University. One perspective of Day of the Dead.
- Van Gogh's Drawings
Van Gogh's Vestibule of the Asylum
From New York Times, Art section, Friday, October 14, 2005
I know this isn't art class and that most of you are not artists. But learning to see as an artist sees will help you see sociologically as well as aesthetically. Remember the rows of chairs. Whether you consciously notice them or not, they deliver status and power messages, and your unconscious mind processes all those messages. (Bruce Lipton, Biology of Belief)
Notice that Van Gogh, even though he was greatly influenced by Japanese painting with its blocks of color, does not use solid blocks of color. He draws or paints in lines that give depth and color variation, adding the complexity of learned technique. Look closely at his technique here. Try it with some of the things you decorate. Look at how I used a pattern on this week's painting to add the same kind of depth and textural interest. You could use a stamp for that purpose. Try it.
- Little Nemo in Slumberland, just published reproduction of a comic from 100 years ago. Marvelous reviews.
What are you going to remember of the world of color and line and stories 50 years from now?
Little Nemo in Slumberland The just-published book by Winsor McCay at Sunday Press Books. I was delighted by the long legs of the cranes and the wonderfully imaginative idea of doing a dream sequence. This is the first time I've ever seen Little Nemo, but I thought many of you with kids would like it. Maybe you could use that technique in some of your art work. Making the legs really long. Exaggerating width or length is typical of many artists' techniques. Modigliani, long. Botero, wide.
- Learning to Use Art as a Tool for Discourse
Our Naked Space Exhibit on Love 1A is now started on the Internet. Visit it by clicking on the hot links on the image map below. Remember, you can determine a hot link by running your cursor over the image until a hand appears. Click where the hand is. And start thinking out of the box.
Invitation and Image Map for The Naked Space Exhibit for Fall 2005 Love 1A
You might want to look at the Spring 2004 Exhibit Online:
Invitation to Naked Space Exhibit
Academic Support and Resource Links
- A Range of Sources on Global Info
Left/Right Perspectives - Cursor - New York Times - The National Review
Arts and Letters Daily - The Economist - The Sierra Club - The Guardian
Wall Street Journal - The Weekly Standard - The Nation - The Cato Institute (Libertarian)
BBC NEWS | Americas - truthout - Museum of Tolerance, Los Angeles
Los Angeles Times - Chicago Tribune - La Opinion - The Washington Post
Cursor's Al Jazeera Archive - Ha'aretz - Palestine Monitor - Palestine Report
Graduate Exams Study
- University of Chicago Prelim Study
- Revised Syllabi for jeanne's Fall 2005 Classes
- Instructions for Tutoring and Learning Records Requests
Some older files not yet revised for Fall 2005, but useful.
- How to Navigate the Web Site
- Mentoring Help for New Students with Frequently Asked Questions
- Mentoring Help for Returning Students with More Frequently Asked Questions
- Shared Reading Suggestions
- Learning Styles
- Home Page for transform-dom You can read all the messages on Transforming Dominant Discourse from this page. Just click on messages in the left hand frame. You can read the messages, even if you're having difficulty signing up.
Preparing for Graduate Study:
- Test Prep Preview Joshua L. Stewart, recommended this site because it has free practice tests. If you're thinking of taking the GRE, the LAST, or any other graduate entry test, this might be a good place to gather some early information. Joshua suggested it for Praxis Practice, but a quick first look suggests they don't mean by praxis what we do. Check it out, anyway, if you have some spare time. jeanne
- Resource Literacy
- Urban Legends Reference Pages. They post rumors and scams and phony e-mails circulating, to offer you a quick check. It worked for me. I entered "Fat Boy" as a google seacrch, and when I saw the Snopes.com link, I knew it would help, and it did. To not check your sources is as grievous as to plagiarize someone else's information and writing. the-artists.org Good quick reference site with many of the artists, art schools, and visual approaches to present social issue that we discuss. Added April 8, 2005.
- Plagiarism Watch www.streetgangs.com site. The intelligent and effective use of resources means that you have to be careful not to plagiarize other people's material. We have several files on plagiarism, but I think the one that might make the most sense to you is this complaint on streetgangs.com. They give you samples of sites that have taken their material without citation, even at colleges, and they also give you examples of sites that have used their material with proper attribution. I find the irony poetic, and hope that their message will get through to you the importance of attribution. Dr. O'Connor on his Mega Criminal Justice site led me to streetgangs.com and noted that others frequently hack into the site. For that reason I have created a backup copy for your use in case you cannot access the actual site. Please be sure to attribute any citation to streetgangs.com. jeanne Backup.
Using Academic Language Effectively
Merriam-Webster Dictionary Search:
- 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
- Career Options You Might Not Have Considered
- visual media and their interdependence with other means of knowing to understand that we are not totally rational creatures deciding things apart from our feelings and values. Wolfowitz (new President of the World Bank to aid developing countries AND principle advocate of the Iraq War) might feel very differently when he is exposed to visual and aural images of the poor developing countries that have not before been his primary concern. So we want to know how best to present those developing countries visually. And we might find that we can have a career doing that sort of thing, so it does reflect on us as individuals. Added April 2, 2005.
Sneaky Strokes and Flying Good Dogs
Flying Dog is also a painting by Zhang Kai. Best I've ever come across to illustrate our site with magic numbers and unicorns and whipped cream cats and now, flying dogs:
- Flying 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.