June 21, 2006

Blogging will be virtually non-existent

Tomorrow I leave for Amherst, MA, where I will be working at a Great Books Summer Program. That may surprise some of you, given my distaste for core curricula and other such things, but I'm personally a big fan of the Great Books. I feel like I've blogged enough before on the topic, so I won't wear you out with another post about compulsory canons, etc. Instead, I leave you with another recommendation:

Watch Veronica Mars.

No, seriously. Watch Veronica Mars.

And if you're bored, check out Pitchfork's 100 Greatest Music Videos. I read Pitchfork rather lackadaisically, but this feature is actually really outstanding. However, to balance things out, also check out a Dartmouth alum's list of the Top Twenty-Five Music Videos.


  1. Anonymous11:26 AM

    Seal, are you a fool, or a hypocrite? You criticize Great Books programs on intellectual grounds, but then you go legitimize one by attending? I hope you're not actually paying tuition for this boondoggle--because we all know in a capitalist system money speaks louder than words!

  2. No, no. You don't understand--I am being paid as an assistant in this program. That might be worse, but I don't really feel like I'm being hypocritical. For one thing, the reading list is actually quite diverse (surprisingly), and for another, my objection has never been that I think all books are equally deserving of being taught, but rather that no book is of paramount importance and irreplaceable in an education. I really don't feel that this view is one that the camp is trying to instill. Secondly, my beef has always been about placing the Canon in an obligatory position in education. A summer camp is hardly obligatory education. I have absolutely no problem with students choosing to read the books that Bloom and Hirsch and people like that have tried to cram into the Canon. What I do have a problem with is when there is an absence of other choices.