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October 11, 2011

Florida's Tea Party governor plans to cancel all liberal arts and social science education at Florida's public universities

His wants to force every college student in Florida to focus on STEM: science, technology, engineering, and math. The FSU anthro department has refused to admit new grad students. This isn't a joke. Adam Weinstein at the link below explains why this is ridiculous and how *what* degree you get doesn't matter all that much. Rick Scott to Liberal Arts Majors: Drop Dead | Mother Jones
Florida's unpopular tea party governor, Rick Scott, wants more of the state's youths to pick up college degrees... but only if the degrees are useful to corporations and don't teach students to question social norms. "You know what? They need to get education in areas where they can get jobs," Scott told a right-wing radio host Monday morning. He continued: "You know, we don't need a lot more anthropologists in the state. It's a great degree if people want to get it, but we don't need them here. I want to spend our dollars giving people science, technology, engineering, math degrees. That's what our kids need to focus all their time and attention on. Those type of degrees. So when they get out of school, they can get a job." It's no idle sound bite. The governor, an ex-corporate CEO with a checkered business past, is pushing a plan that would all but kill liberal arts and social sciences at the Sunshine State's public universities—and he's got support from the Legislature's psychology-hatin' GOP majority. . . .

October 06, 2011

Fox is turning Lev Grossman's The Magicians into a TV series

I have it on my bedside table to read. I hear it's hecka fun. Lev Grossman’s The Magicians to Become a Television Series | Tor.com
It looks as though A Game of Thrones (and the upcoming American Gods television show) will have even more competition throwing its weight into the fantasy-drama ring: Lev Grossman’s The Magicians has been optioned and Fox is planning on turning it into a series. The appearance of this new project amidst a slew of new fantastical shows highlights a clear tilt in the preferences of mainstream entertainment; fantasy has not previously been treated as a serious dramatic genre unless it left out references to magical incantations, faraway lands, and mythical creatures. It seems as though Breaking Bad, Mad Men, and Broadwalk Empire will have to move over for this upcoming era of television. But how does Fox’s project stack up against the rest of them? . . .

October 05, 2011

This is just a great interview with a curmudgeonly Maurice Sendak

Maurice Sendak: 'I refuse to lie to children' | Books | The Guardian
Maurice Sendak looks like one of his own creations: beady eyes, pointy eyebrows, the odd monsterish tuft of hair and a reputation for fierceness that makes you tip-toe up the path of his beautiful house in Connecticut like a child in a fairytale. Sendak has lived here for 40 years – until recently with his partner Eugene, who died in 2007; and now alone with his dog, Herman (after Melville), a large alsatian who barges to the door to greet us. "He's German," says Sendak, getting up from the table where he is doing a jigsaw puzzle of a monster from his most famous book, Where the Wild Things Are. Sotto voce, he adds: "He doesn't know I'm Jewish." At 83, Sendak is still enraged by almost everything that crosses his landscape. In the first 10 minutes of our meeting, he gets through: Ebooks: "I hate them. It's like making believe there's another kind of sex. There isn't another kind of sex. There isn't another kind of book! A book is a book is a book." New York: "You get pushed and harassed and people grope you. It's too tumultuous, it's too crazy!" The American right: "These Republican schnooks would be comical if they weren't not funny." Rupert Murdoch: "His name should be what everything is called now." But he publishes you! "Yes! Harpers. He owns Harpers and I guess the rest of the world, too. He represents how bad things have become. But I don't know a better house. They're all in trouble. They're all terrible." Sendak shakes his head beneath the low-beamed ceiling, in this room full of art and old rugs. "I can't believe I've turned into a typical old man. I can't believe it." He smiles and his face transforms. "I was young just minutes ago." . . .

September 26, 2011

Recommended Reading: "I Was a Playboy Bunny" by Gloria Steinem

Back in college I took a string of Women's Studies...

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