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Dean Kirkland

every profession is a conspiracy against the laity

http://sriramkhe.blogspot.com/

Located in Monmouth

Last update: March 25th, 2017 at 08:00 am

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273 post clicks in the past 90 days

Blogging since 2001 ........... ............ And back again since June 2008

As one who engages in autoethnography, I always get excited when students use the course materials in order to gain an understanding of their own stories.  Which is what happened two years ago, with a quiet and reserved student.  Her quest was a serious one: She wanted to understand how her loving and lovable O

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I might seem uninterested, but I observe.  It is very much a part of my approach to a Socratic examined life.  Well, how can one live an examined life without observing, right?To observe is immensely more than to merely see.  We laugh at the funny instances that are presented in observational come

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I would think that for most people the hormonal biology is the same, irrespective of the continents in which we live.  Language, religion, ethnicity, and any cultural marker has got nothing to do with the growth of male facial hair, pubic hair, hair under the armpits, and--most importantly, the sex hormones.

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In the search for life outside planet earth, scientists always look out for water.  As this commentary author put it, "the Nasa mantra for looking for life in outer space is to “

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A few years ago, a friend--I suspect that he voted for donald t. rump--challenged me with: "You have read about the world's major religions.  You are a learned man. Tell me whether anybody other than Jesus has ever come back from being dead?"I usually never take up such questions to debate.  Because, t

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Sometimes, I joke (I find my jokes to be funny!) in my classes that the worst invention ever was one that goes back nearly 12,000 years--settled agriculture.  Until then, we humans were no different from other mammals in that we hunted and gathered to feed ourselves, and over the rest of the hours of the day, we played

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It is a good thing that here in the US elections are held mid-fall.  As depressing as the results were, the holidays, the new year, and now spring, all help ease the pain.  Imagine, on the other hand, if elections had been held in late summer, just as the days are getting shorter--it would have been as if we were

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The first thing to surprise me during my only visit to Alaska was this: The driver who picked us up to take us to the airport spoke with an accent, and when I asked him he said he was from Bulgaria.  No, that's not the surprise--after all, lots of shuttle and taxi drivers here are from other countries.  What surpr

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When I first arrived in this country, I knew nothing about trump nor about microwave ovens.  I had not even heard about microwave ovens when I was back in the old country.The apartment that I shared with roommates did not have a microwave oven.  But, life was fine and dandy--until I realized what a pai

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What a fucking effluvia this is!

I am a very mild-mannered person, really.  But, every time I see the name trump, I fucking want to swear!  It is not me then, right?  The cause of my behavior is clearly this fucking president!If you have been a reader for long, then by now you know that those previous sentences were a set up to t

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Two days ago, I referred to the blatantly racist post by a Republican member of the House of Representatives, steve king.  Guess what?  The party expelled him today--he crossed the Rubicon.Nah, of

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It is not my responsibility! Or, is it?

After watching "I Am Not Your Negro" I told the friend that she has it easier than me--this atrocious history of my adopted country piles on top of the atrocious history from the old country.  Unbearable burden

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I have been grazing James Baldwin's writings and speeches, since watching the documentary that I blogged about yesterday.  I had always wanted to read his works.  Especially because Ta-Nehisi Coates always

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It was heart-breaking for me to watch the archival footage of James Balwdin's comments, and to listen to his words, in the documentary "I am not your Negro," and think that many of those very words are applica

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Seven weeks into the new presidency, it continues to be surreal ... it is like a bad dream that continues even if we force ourselves to wake up and go to the bathroom; we fall asleep and the nightmare continues from where it was paused!I can even understand the bluest of blue-collar workers who have not had a gr

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When people meet with me for the first time (which often turns out to be last time too!) many ask me about this life of mine where my work and home are a 100 kilometers apart.  One hundred kilometers sounds way farther than 65 miles, or  frighteningly more than an hour of commute time, right?  After all, peop

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The way I live, which gets reflected in many of the posts here--like even this one--my life is about experiences and memories.  I live my own life, on my own terms--even if it means pissing quite a few people off and living a lonely life.  (which is why

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I am always excited about the classmates of mine who have become famous in ways that I am not capable of.  There is Srikumar (Kumar) who is now a go-to-expert on all things R

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Three decades ago, about this time of the year was when graduate school in America was becoming a realistic probability.  In those dark ages before the internet, I had some anxiety-filled days waiting for the envelope in the mail. I distinctly recall one evening in a hotel in Trivandrum, where my supervisor

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This term, too, I told students who were paying attention that when we think about the future, we often commit the mistake of assuming that the future will only be marginally different from now.  "We have no idea, really!" is what I have been telling students for years.  But--you know what's coming by now, right?-

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I have often commented that government budgets are nothing but a reflection of our priorities and, therefore, our moral decisions.  But then, well, nobody cares for my comments anyway!That kind of a bottom-line on budgets as priorities is easily conveyed through a wonderful "game" that Brookings has put tog

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Hey professors, go talk to the public!

I have blogged before (like here) about how Charles Darwin's argument on natural selection and evolution threatened people's understanding of who they are.  It is not easy, I suppose, to accept that we humans

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I have sent an edited version of this to the editor*******Throughout the campaign, donald t. rump beat up on three countries as the most significant reason for why the white working class were left behind even as the American economy grew: China, Mexico, and India. Since his election and then

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These days, I find that I am more often than not agitated. No thanks to this president. Even the soothing back-roads seem treacherous in this environment; I am worried that some pissed-off trump-voter will express his unhappiness at this dark-skinned, bearded, fellow.  Thus, I am on the boring interstate wh

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In some of the dystopian portrayals of the future, the inequality widens so much that there have-nots are left way behind.  Sometimes, the rich and the affluent are on an entirely different planet--literally.  Other times, the underclass are underground--literally.The rate at which technology is progre

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Verse as in ...The term is coming to an end ... this is when my problems begin ... because, I have just about gotten to know students, and we have to start wrapping things up.  And then, as if I never learn from past experiences, I once again start all over when a new term begins, and ... it is like the Bud

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In America under trump, women will have lots of kids. Yeah, right!

When discussing population dynamics, I have often asked students about the number of children of the recent US presidents. Obama?Two.The president before him?Bush. Two.Before him?Clinton. One.

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As a way to stress the importance of the courses that I teach, I often tell students that they have enormous power to influence the outcomes through two roles that they have: Consumer and voter.  I then follow up with how people talk about the voting aspect, but that they vastly underestimate the decisions that we make

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How will you bet on Man v. the Machine?

Intellectually, rationally, I have a very tough time understanding how trump could have campaigned telling workers that he will bring back their old jobs.  It is beyond my imagination and understanding.  It is a crime to intentionally mislead gullible and helpless people by promising a future that simply cannot ha

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Right from when I was a kid, I have always believed that there is something in people in India that makes us feel it is normal to go far away from the places where we were born and raised.  Maybe the stories of my grandfather wer

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