Tag Archives: history

What We Have Lost: Our Stories Make Us One

“Thanksgiving lessons jettison pilgrim hats, welcome truth” This headline from the Associated Press exploded inside my skull when I saw it three days ago, and in the dust that settled, I read an important lesson about what has been lost as … Continue reading

Posted in culture, current events, divisiveness, education, freedom, history, language, literature, narrative, politics, story | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My #WalkAway Story

As I write, the Presidential election of 2020 is ten days away. I agree with those on both sides of the aisle that it is the most important election at least in my lifetime (which is long); I will not, … Continue reading

Posted in Bill of Rights, critical thinking, current events, divisiveness, education, First Amendment, free speech, freedom, history, politics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Everything Not Forbidden Is Compulsory

When I first passed this sign yesterday morning on the way to class, I thought it was an instruction in etiquette: “Don’t sit here because this is a table, and sitting on tables is rude.” Silly me.

Posted in Bill of Rights, books, COVID-19, critical thinking, current events, divisiveness, education, First Amendment, free speech, freedom, history, language, literature, news, novel coronavirus, politics, society, totalitarianism | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Unity: Advent Word 7

Today we commemorate a day that has lived in infamy for 78 years–a day that also united our country as has no other event in history. I was not born for another 12 years, but as if from instant mutation … Continue reading

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Misinterpreting Emerson: A Meditation on Consistency, the Constitution, and American Exceptionalism

When I first started working as a disability examiner for Social Security, we had no desktop computers, just Wang terminals; nor could we communicate via email, just intraoffice messaging whose default was “reply all.” Hence, I established a wide reputation … Continue reading

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Fruition: 2018

As I began to ponder the year soon coming to a close, it seemed necessary and fitting that I end the longest hiatus of my blog-writing career with a brief narration of the project–now complete–that has consumed my life for … Continue reading

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The Mother of Beauty: World War I in Word, Image, and Song

Published below is the text of a talk I will give tomorrow to commemorate the Armistice centenary as part of a series of events entitled “FTCC Remembers World War I: 1914-1918.” “Death is the mother of beauty,” wrote Wallace Stevens, … Continue reading

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One Doomed Youth–and 17 Million More

From July to November 1917, Wilfred Edward Salter Owen was a shell-shocked second lieutenant in the Manchester Regiment, under the care of W. H. R. Rivers at Craiglockhart War Hospital. There, he became close friends with Siegfried Sassoon, who became … Continue reading

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My Brief Encounter with Erney Krongard

Despite the apparent obscurity of this World War I-era postcard, the charm of its rough sketch of doughboys at the front and the accompanying doggerel prompted me to buy it from eBay along with others more charming still–and of much … Continue reading

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Nothing’s Fair

For more than two years, I have been immersed in a project designed to commemorate the centenary of World War I in my freshman composition classes and–this November–across the campus of the community college where I teach. I have already … Continue reading

Posted in books, history, literature, love, World War I | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments