“Think For Yourself” – Hidden Power of Words Series, #31

According to Southern mores, “bless your heart” is typically a veiled insult, despite its sympathetic denotation. “Think for yourself” has a similar, contradictory function. Think-for-yourself phraseology appears in my inbox regularly, but only when I have publicly expressed my most original and complex ideas and only from people without any expertise (according to information availableContinue reading ““Think For Yourself” – Hidden Power of Words Series, #31″

Experience, Voice, Authority

Who has the necessary authority to speak about a given topic or identity? What do we miss when trying to learn about Otherness (see “Can the Subaltern Speak?”)? Given thousands of years of history, history dominated by an elite often consisting of normative White men and now History dominated by “professionals,” such questions will always beContinue reading “Experience, Voice, Authority”

Notes on: The Football Industrial Complex and NBC’s Rise’s Challenge

Football is supreme in the United States. As I (and others) have argued, football is racist. Football is at least also ableist, colonialist, and classist when doing an intersectional analysis. Criticisms of football, whether from your everyday friend or in your everyday cultural production, are almost unheard of in the land of the Football Industrial Complex.Continue reading “Notes on: The Football Industrial Complex and NBC’s Rise’s Challenge”

Difference, Intelligence, and Life

Crows, scientists say, are as smart as the typical five-to-seven year-old. Any comment about the “intelligence” any kind of “life” has or does not have is immediately problematic–and human-centric. The more we learn about other forms of life, the more we realize how much more they know than previously acknowledged and how much more weContinue reading “Difference, Intelligence, and Life”

Notes on: Comprehension and Paper vs. Digital Reading

Some professors and critics of change denounce various e-readers as the enemy.  In what I would deem a misguided, ill-informed move, some syllabi will “prohibit” students from reading books for said classes on a Kindle, iPad, or similar device. Discussions about the ableism of such policies are important, too.  A syllabus might say or suggestContinue reading “Notes on: Comprehension and Paper vs. Digital Reading”

18 Ways to Have Different Class (or Group) Discussions

The following outlines various techniques I use when teaching to enhance or change discussion-based activities. I’ll update it as necessary. I’ve had a number of students say they enjoy my classes in part because they never know what we’ll be doing that day!  1. Bring out the maps. Have students draw maps and discuss theirContinue reading “18 Ways to Have Different Class (or Group) Discussions”

Real Problems Under Cloaks of Success, or How Polk Elementary Handles Bullying

I attended Gladys Polk Elementary in Richwood, Texas, from August 1992 to May 1999. It was a huge part of my early life (and some bad memories, discussed here), and I continue to keep track of what is going on at Polk–thanks to the Internet. This past December, I read through its 2016-2017 Campus ImprovementContinue reading “Real Problems Under Cloaks of Success, or How Polk Elementary Handles Bullying”

Modern Life and the Problem of Memory

Several days ago, I was on the way to Houston to teach and suddenly had a fear that I had forgotten to put deodorant on that morning! (Luckily, I had put deodorant on, even though I never could retrieve that memory.) And this got me to thinking: We have a lot to remember each dayContinue reading “Modern Life and the Problem of Memory”