Beyond Resilience and PTSD: Flexibility and Heterogeneity Following Potential Trauma – Dec 8

Beyond Resilience and PTSD: 

Flexibility and Heterogeneity Following Potential Trauma

Presenter: Prof. George A. Bonanno, Ph.D.

Columbia University

Monday, Dec. 8, 7-9  pm
Teachers College, 525 West 120th St.,
Room 305, Russell Hall
RSVP to by REPLY to this e-mail (grossassoc@aol.com
and http://www.meetup.com/Conversations-New-York/events/218998484/

Please bring photo ID for entry to building.

 

Most of us  are exposed to multiple potentially traumatic events (PTEs) during the course of our lives.  Such events are more common than is usually assumed.

Until recently, responses to such events have been understood using either psychopathological categories, such as PTSD, or measures of central tendency (e.g., average differences).

I demonstrate that although both approaches have been useful, neither approach captures the true heterogeneity of responses to aversive events. Recent advances in latent trajectory modeling following such events have identified prototypical trajectories of outcome, including chronic dysfunction and a resilient trajectory of stable health.

In this talk, I will describe studies from our research program that examine individual differences in response to demanding life events, including terrorist disaster, military combat, mass shooting, spinal cord injury, bio-epidemic, and cancer surgery. I will also describe our research on predictors of the resilience trajectory and place special emphasis on our recent research on flexibility in coping and emotion regulation as a resilience-promoting factor.

George A. Bonanno, Ph.D. is a Professor of Clinical Psychology and Director of the Loss, Trauma, and Emotion Lab at Columbia University’s Teachers College. Professor Bonanno’s interests center on the question of how human beings cope with loss, trauma and other forms of extreme adversity, with an emphasis on resilience and the salutary role of flexible emotion regulatory processes. Professor Bonanno’s empirical and theoretical work has focused on defining and documenting resilience in the face of loss or potential traumatic events, including disaster, loss, terrorist attack, bio-epidemic, traumatic injury, and life-threatening injuries medical events, and on identifying the range of psychological and contextual variables that predict both psychopathological and resilient outcomes. His research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation, and featured in various print, television, and radio media. He recently authored The Other Side of Sadness (Basic Books).

Websites:  Loss, Trauma, and Emotion Lab: http://www.tc.edu/LTElab/

The PURL II study: http://www.tc.columbia.edu/centers/PURLII/

 

Dinner: To augment the fellowship among members, you are warmly invited to join other members for dinner at Faculty House at 5:30 PM.  (After dinner we will walk to Teachers College, 10 minutes away).   Dinner at Faculty House, a varied and ample buffet (including wine), is $25, which must be paid for by check at the beginning of the meal.  If you intend to join us for dinner you must let us know via email a week in advance (by Monday, December  1.  RSVP to either Ron Gross (grossassoc@aolcom) or Michael Schulman (mdschlmn41@yahoo.com).


Directions to Faculty House:
  Faculty House is located on Columbia University’s East Campus on Morningside Drive and 117th Street.  Enter Wien Courtyard through the gates on the north side of 116 Street, between Amsterdam Avenue and Morningside Drive. Walk toward the north end of the courtyard, then turn right toward Morningside Drive.  Faculty House will be the last building on the right.

 

The Seminars: This seminar is jointly sponsored by the Columbia University Seminars on Innovation in Education and Ethics, Moral Education, and Society.

The Seminar on Innovation in Education is chaired by Ronald Gross, who also conducts the Socratic Conversations at the Gottesman Libraries. Founded in 1970, the Seminar explores the process of learning in individuals, organizations, and society throughout the lifespan and via major institutions.

The Seminar on Ethics, Moral Education and Society, chaired by Michael Schulman,  brings together scholars from psychology, philosophy, sociology, political theory, education, religion and other disciplines to explore issues in ethics, moral education, moral development, moral motivation, moral decision making and related topics.

 

Future meetings for the 2014-2015 academic year: Jan. 26, Mar. 2, Apr. 13, May 4.

 

Columbia University encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities.  University Seminar participants with disabilities who anticipate needing accommodations or who have questions about physical access may contact the Office of Disability Services at 212-854-2388 or disability@columbia.edu.  Disability accommodations, including sign-language interpreters, are available on request.  Requests for accommodations must be made two weeks in advance.  On campus, seminar participants with disabilities should alert a Public Safety Officer that they need assistance accessing campus.

___________________________________________

Michael Schulman, chair, Ethics, Moral Education, and Society, mdschlmn41@yahoo.com

Ron Gross, co-chair, Innovation in Education, grossassoc@aol.com

How Wise Are You? – Nov 20

How Wise Are You?
Socratic Conversation with Ron Gross
Thursday, November 20, 4-5:15 pm,

Celebrating World Philosophy Day (UNESCO)
Teachers College,Columbia University
525 West 120th St., Seminar Room 305, Russell Hall
There will be refreshments and a display of books on Wisdom.
Please bring photo ID for entry to the building.

Each year on the third Thursday in November, UNESCO invites friends of philosophy throughout the world to pursue “free, reasoned and informed thinking — thinking that works towards a better understanding of the world, promoting tolerance and peace.”

In response to that challenge, this session of the Socratic Conversations will examine ten behaviors associated with thinking and acting wisely, drawn from our world wisdom traditions and from scientific research on the subject.

Please come to share your ideas, experiences, and…wisdom! Among the topics we’ll discuss are:

  • How Do You Define Wisdom?
  • Who is Wise? How Can You Tell?
  • Is Wisdom Individual, or Collective?
  • Can Wisdom Be Taught? – or Learned?
  • Are you getting wiser?
  • If so, how? If not, why not?
  • Does Wisdom make us happier?
  • Does American culture value it?

This Conversation will be followed up by several sessions of the University Seminar which meets monthly, including sessions with Mark Brackett, of Yale University, on Emotional Intelligence (January 26th); George Bonanno, of Teachers College, Columbia University, on Resilience after Traumatic Loss ( December 8th) and Ursala Staudinger, of Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, on Wisdom(March).

 

Halloween for Thinkers: Let’s Talk Back to Death — by Affirming Life!

Halloween for Thinkers: Let’s Talk Back to Death — by Affirming Life!

with Ron Gross

 

Thursday, Oct. 30, 4:00 SHARP – 5:15 pm

Teachers College, Columbia University

525 West 120th Street  (bet. Broadway and Amsterdam Ave. – 116th St. stop on the #1 train)

Room 305 Russell Hall

 

RSVP to grossassoc@aol.com — space is limited

and CNY Meetup http://www.meetup.com/Conversations-New-York/events/210285442/

 

Please bring photo ID required for entry to building, and plan to arrive by 3:45 to be courteous to fellow participants.

 

Halloween is a holiday that makes fun of Death. At this Conversation, we’ll be inspired by death-defying mentors from Socrates to Woody Allen.  Let’s use wit, thoughtfulness, and conviviality to deal with the Grim Reaper!   (Costumes are Welcome but optional.)

 

Please join us to share your  convictions, feelings, and hopes.  We’ll be in good company: thousands of  Americans are attending Death Cafes, Death Dinners, and Death Salons (featured on the front page of The New York Times). A Showtime documentary series, Time of Death, focuses on “real people face to face with their own mortality.” An acclaimed recent book, The Death Class: A True Story About Life, reports that there’s a 3-year waiting list to enroll in this offering at Kean University in New Jersey; a similar on-line course, by Professor Shelly Kagan, is available from Yale University.

 

We are learning to talk about death more freely, frankly — and life-affirmingly! Come join the movement to demystify this taboo subject. It can be a significant step in learning how to live.

 

Among the topics we’ll discuss are:

 

  • Does your awareness of your mortality affect the way you are living your life? Should it? How?

 

  • What is one of your favorite novels, movies, TV shows, plays, musical works, or other art that deals with Death?

 

  • What happens after death? Do you feel that you are still somehow in contact with anyone you have lost?

  • Do you feel that you’ve thought enough about mortality, to sort out your ideas and feelings in ways that are satisfying to you?

 

  • Do you have any strong convictions about what you would like to happen at the end of your life? Should we have The Pill?

 

CNY Members please note:  This conversation will be followed at 5:45 by the monthly meeting of the CNY Steering Committee, which you are warmly welcome to join!

 

“Double-Header”! Conversation + CNY Meeting – Sep 18

“Double-Header”! Conversation + CNY Meeting, 9/18, 4:00 – 7:00, Columbia University

Conversation on Your Values, with Ron Gross,

using video dramatizations, 4:00 – 5:15,

plus

CNY Meeting to plan pre-Halloween city-wide conversations on

“Would It Kill You to Spend An Hour Talking About Death?”

5:15-7:00.

Thurs., September 18th

Teachers College, Columbia University

Gottesman Libraries

525 W. 120th, Room 104b

COME FOR EITHER OR BOTH.

RSVP to grossassoc@aol.com

and Meetup: http://www.meetup.com/Conversations-New-York/events/204369892/

The Conversation – 4:00 – 5:15

Lights! Camera!! Values!!?:

How Is Your Character Shaped by the TV, Movies, and Other Media You See?

Socratic Conversation with Ron Gross

Have your values been effected by portrayals of good and bad behavior which you’ve experienced via TV

dramas, movies, and theater?

At this Conversation we’ll view a stunning array of one-minute real-life incidents designed to inspire us to

practice major virtues like Honesty, Grit, Civility, and Commitment.

Do you feel that your ideals are strengthened when you see such enactments in the media?

Please come to share your experiences with the ways in which inspiring stories, images, and words have

shaped your character.

Conversations New York Meeting – 5:30 – 7:00

We will celebrate the success of our CONVERSATION DAY on 8/30 in Bryant Park, welcome your ideas and suggestions, and organize for our next initiative, below.

CONVERSATION VS. DEATH

October, 2014

Would It Kill You to Spend an Hour Talking About Death? is the rallying cry for a city-wide series of

conversations to occur this October, during the period leading up to Halloween, promoted by Conversations

New York (www.conversationsnewyork.com).

These free, open-to-all Conversations will be held in public spaces and places throughout the five boroughs,

including parks, churches, campuses, business building ground-floor atriums such as CityCorp at 53rd

and Lexington Avenue, and upstairs eating rooms of fast food restaurants such as those opposite Penn Station

on 6th Avenue and 33rd Street.  How-To at the website.  Anyone can self-organize their own conversation on this topic by using the easy

Organizations and institutions which are hosting conversations on the subject of Death during that period

include the New York Society for Ethical Culture, The Open Center, Trinity Church, and the Death Café of NY

which has been featured on the front page of The New York Times.

A culminating conversation will be held at Columbia University on the day before the holiday, Thursday, Oct. 30th, at 4:00 pm, hosted by Ronald Gross, founder/director of CNY.

“These conversations are celebrations of life,” says Gross, author of Socrates’ Way and other books. “They are

inspired by Bertolt Brecht’s dictum: ‘Do not fear death so much, but rather the inadequate life.’”

The sponsor of Conversation vs. Death is Conversations New York (www.conversationsnewyork.com), a non-

profit which earlier this year held a symposium on The Power of Conversation at Columbia University, and

organized a Conversation Day celebration in Bryant Park on August 30th

CONTACT:

Ronald Gross, grossassoc@aol.com; http://www.conversationsnewyork.com.

“Double-Header”! Conversation + CNY Meeting – Sep 18

“Double-Header”! Conversation + CNY Meeting, 9/18, 4:00 – 7:00, Columbia University

Conversation on Your Values, with Ron Gross,

using video dramatizations, 4:00 – 5:15,

plus

CNY Meeting to plan pre-Halloween city-wide conversations on

“Would It Kill You to Spend An Hour Talking About Death?”

5:15-7:00.

Thurs., September 18th

Teachers College, Columbia University

Gottesman Libraries

525 W. 120th, Room 104b

COME FOR EITHER OR BOTH.

RSVP to grossassoc@aol.com

and Meetup: http://www.meetup.com/Conversations-New-York/events/204369892/

 

The Conversation – 4:00 – 5:15

Lights! Camera!! Values!!?:

How Is Your Character Shaped by the TV, Movies, and Other Media You See?

Socratic Conversation with Ron Gross

Have your values been effected by portrayals of good and bad behavior which you’ve experienced via TV

dramas, movies, and theater?

At this Conversation we’ll view a stunning array of one-minute real-life incidents designed to inspire us to

practice major virtues like Honesty, Grit, Civility, and Commitment.

Do you feel that your ideals are strengthened when you see such enactments in the media?

Please come to share your experiences with the ways in which inspiring stories, images, and words have

shaped your character.

 

Conversations New York Meeting – 5:30 – 7:00

We will celebrate the success of our CONVERSATION DAY on 8/30 in Bryant Park, welcome your ideas and suggestions, and organize for our next initiative, below.

CONVERSATION VS. DEATH

October, 2014

Would It Kill You to Spend an Hour Talking About Death? is the rallying cry for a city-wide series of

conversations to occur this October, during the period leading up to Halloween, promoted by Conversations

New York (www.conversationsnewyork.com).

These free, open-to-all Conversations will be held in public spaces and places throughout the five boroughs,

including parks, churches, campuses, business building ground-floor atriums such as CityCorp at 53rd

and Lexington Avenue, and upstairs eating rooms of fast food restaurants such as those opposite Penn Station

on 6th Avenue and 33rd Street.  How-To at the website.  Anyone can self-organize their own conversation on this topic by using the easy

Organizations and institutions which are hosting conversations on the subject of Death during that period

include the New York Society for Ethical Culture, The Open Center, Trinity Church, and the Death Café of NY

which has been featured on the front page of The New York Times.

A culminating conversation will be held at Columbia University on the day before the holiday, Thursday, Oct. 30th, at 4:00 pm, hosted by Ronald Gross, founder/director of CNY.

“These conversations are celebrations of life,” says Gross, author of Socrates’ Way and other books. “They are

inspired by Bertolt Brecht’s dictum: ‘Do not fear death so much, but rather the inadequate life.’”

The sponsor of Conversation vs. Death is Conversations New York (www.conversationsnewyork.com), a non-

profit which earlier this year held a symposium on The Power of Conversation at Columbia University, and

organized a Conversation Day celebration in Bryant Park on August 30th

CONTACT:

Ronald Gross, grossassoc@aol.com; http://www.conversationsnewyork.com.

Conversations Day – Aug 30

Let’s Talk, New York!

(OK, we know this rhymes only in New York!)

 

 

Saturday, August 30th is

CONVERSATION DAY

In Bryant Park (Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street) and throughout the City

   RSVP (required to reserve a place) to grossassoc@aol.com and RSVP to http://www.meetup.com/Conversations-New-York/events/176390172/

Website: www.conversationsnewyork.com

 

Conversation Day is a celebration of the joys and benefits of Good Talk.   Help us join with our  friends in Boston, Las Vegas, San Francisco,  London,  and as far afield as Kuala Lampur — by talking the talk here in the Big Apple!

 

Join us at 3 pm in Bryant Park, located between 40th and 42nd streets between 5th Avenue and the Avenue of the Americas (6th Ave.).  Look for us wearing colored hats (red/yellow/blue/green).  Exact location and details  will be provided when you RSVP to grossassoc@aol.com..

 

OR

 

Do-it-yourself!   You can hold your own  conversation anytime during that day or evening, anywhere in NYC, indoors or outdoors, with old friends or new ones.  

 

* The simplest thing you can do to show your support of the day is to simply have a conversation with someone you don’t know! 

* To go one step further,  just bring together a few people  (4-6 is ideal), and choose an enjoyable and meaningful  topic or two to talk about (suggestions below or on reverse of flyer).  

* If you like, partner with a friend to be co-convenors.  If you want to enlarge your circle even further,  consider using   MeetUp (www.meetup.com) to announce your event.

 

For more information, or to let us know what you did, and how it went, please contact us at grossassoc@aol.com; our website is www.conversationsnewyork.com

 

Conversation Day in NYC is inspired by Global Talk-to-Me Day, a project of

Talk to Me London (http://www.talktomelondon.org/home).

 

 

 

 

A FEW POSSIBLE TOPICS FOR YOUR CONVERSATION

(or create some of your own!)

 

Here are a few topics for consideration – or ask for suggestions from your participants, then vote, and talk about the top two or three choices.

 

* What is happiness and how can we make ourselves happier?

* What makes New York City great (for you) – and how might we make it greater (for all of us)?

* What is health and how can we achieve it?

* Who in history or nowadays do you most admire as a human being, and why?

* What’s on your bucket list: the things you’d most like to do in the rest of your life?

* What lessons does history teach us?

* What concerns do you have about privacy today, in areas ranging  from your health, your employment, your on-line life, your politics, your relationships, or….? 

 

 

SUGGESTED GROUND-RULES

FOR HAVING A GREAT CONVERSATION

(or create some of your own!)

 

Here are some “agreements” developed by Conversation Café (www.conversationcafe.org) which you may want to consider for your conversation:

 

Open-mindedness: Listen to and everyone.   Seek to appreciate  many diverse points of view.

Acceptance: Suspend judgment as best you can.

Curiosity: Seek to understand rather than persuade.

Discovery: Question assumptions, look for new insights.

Sincerity: Speak from your heart and personal experience.

Brevity: Go for honesty and depth but don’t go on and on.

“I Was a Child Abuser!”: How Media Mis-representations Promote Misguided and Ineffective Approaches to Child Protection – May 5

The University Seminars on
Ethics, Moral Education, and Society
&
Innovation in Education
present 

“I Was a Child Abuser!”: How Media Mis-representations Promote Misguided and Ineffective Approaches
to Child Protection

EMILY HOROWITZ, Ph.D.
 
Date: MAY 5 at 7 PM
 
PLEASE NOTE LOCATION – NOT FACULTY HOUSE:
at Gottesman Library, Teachers College, 525 West 120th Street,
Seminar Room 305, Russell Hall
PLEASE RSVP TO grossassoc@aol.com AND BRING PHOTO ID TO ENTER THE BUILDING
 

Bio: Emily Horowitz is associate professor in the Sociology Department at St. Francis College in Brooklyn.  She is completing a book about myths and realities of crimes against children (under contract, Rowman & Littlefield), and has a forthcoming article in Psychology of Popular Media Culture on child abuse stories in American high-circulation magazines. She also works as an advocate for those falsely accused and/or wrongfully convicted of sexually and/or physically harming children. She received her Ph.D. from Yale University in Sociology in 2002.

Links: Huffington Post article by Emily Horowitz on Halloween Laws for Sex Offenders (October 2014): http://www.huffingtonpost.com/emilyhorowitz/manufacturing-fear-hallow_b_4135793.html

 

Presentation: This talk will address the past few decades of mass media coverage of crimes against children and the new laws, including the explosion of sex offender laws, aimed at protecting them.  I shall connect the rampant media coverage and extensive new legislation to a broader historical and social context, in an effort to understand the causes and consequences of the historic and persistent hysteria and irrationality about this issue. I argue that child protection efforts emerge from the telling of sensational stories about abused children and abusive adults, transmitted in ways that support American cultural beliefs concerning individual responsibility for personal behavior and economic circumstances. Additionally, I will study examples of how this narrative persists in mass media, by examining the content and frequency of stories about child abuse. While data and research consistently show that crimes against children are inexorably linked to poverty and economic distress, the mass media story about child abuse focuses on the most egregious and statistically rarest cases (e.g., child kidnapping by strangers). Consequently, or correspondingly, laws emerge that sanction these exceedingly unusual events (e.g. child sexual abuse by strangers). I will consider how such a narrative regarding the behaviors of evil and immoral people creates and maintains a misguided and ineffective approach to child protection, in the structural realms of American social welfare, criminal and legislative policies. Finally, I shall also suggest how this discourse influences adult and child interaction at the individual level.

 

Dinner: To augment the fellowship among members, you are warmly invited to join other members for dinner at Faculty House at 5:30 PM.  (After dinner we will walk to Teachers College, 10 minutes away).  Dinner at Faculty House, a varied and ample buffet (including wine), is $25, which must be paid for by check at the beginning of the meal.  If you intend to join us for dinner you must let us know via email a week in advance (by Monday, April 28).  RSVP to either Ron Gross (grossassoc@aolcom) or Michael Schulman (mdschlmn41@yahoo.com).

 

Directions to Faculty House:  Faculty House is located on Columbia University’s East Campus on Morningside Drive and 117th Street.  Enter Wien Courtyard through the gates on the north side of 116 Street,between Amsterdam Avenue and Morningside Drive. Walk toward the north end of the courtyard, then turn right toward Morningside Drive.  Faculty House will be the last building on the right.

 

The Seminars: This seminar is jointly sponsored by the Columbia University Seminars on Innovation in Education and Ethics, Moral Education, and Society.

The Seminar on Innovation in Education is co-chaired by Ronald Gross, who also conducts the Socratic Conversations at the Gottesman Libraries, and Robert McClintock who is John L. and Sue Ann Weinberg Professor Emeritus in the Historical and Philosophical Foundations of Education at Teachers College. Founded in 1970, the Seminar explores the process of learning in individuals, organizations, and society throughout the lifespan and via major institutions.

The Seminar on Ethics, Moral Education and Society, chaired by Michael Schulman,  brings together scholars from psychology, philosophy, sociology, political theory, education, religion and other disciplines to explore issues in ethics, moral education, moral development, moral motivation, moral decision making and related topics.

 

This is our last meeting of the 2013-14 academic year.

Columbia University encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities.  University Seminar participants with disabilities who anticipate needing accommodations or who have questions about physical access may contact the Office of Disability Services at 212-854-2388 or disability@columbia.edu.  Disability accommodations, including sign-language interpreters, are available on request.  Requests for accommodations must be made two weeks in advance.  On campus, seminar participants with disabilities should alert a Public Safety Officer that they need assistance accessing campus.

___________________________________________

Michael Schulman, chair, Ethics, Moral Education, and Society, mdschlmn41@yahoo.com

Ron Gross, co-chair, Innovation in Education, grossassoc@aol.com

 

Friendship – Apr 17

Friendship

Socratic Conversation with Ron Gross

Thursday, April 17, 4-5:15pm

Please arrive by 3:45.pm

 

Gottesman Library, Teachers College
525 West 120th St.  – between Broadway & Amsterdam Avenues, north side of street 
#1 train to 116th St.
RSVP to grossassoc@aol.com and http://www.meetup.com/Conversations-New-York/events/176548712/

 

A photo ID is required for admission to building.
PLEASE ARRIVE BY 3:45.
There will be a display of relevant books.
Coffee and refreshments can be purchased as you enter the Library.


Please come to share our experiences, understanding, and questions, including:

(1)What kind of friend do you try to be?

(2)What do you seek from your friends?

(3)Does friendship “just happen” and “grow naturally” –

or are there skills and techniques that can be helpful?

What’s one you’ve learned?

(4)Is friendship different at different stages of life?

(5)Do women’s and men’s friendships differ? How?

(6)How do you feel about re-connecting with old friends  with whom you have lost touch,  via Internet searching or other means?

(7) Are your friendships affected by digital technologies?

(Those Facebook “Friends”…)

(8) What is one of your favorite portrays of friendship in literature, movies, TV, or other genres?  (Like Friends,  Seinfeld, or….?)

(9)What happens when friendships change, falter, or fail?

 

Optional Reading:
Available free on-line:
Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics: Book VIII
Michael de Montaigne, On Friendship

Other:
Jacques Derrida, The Politics of Friendship
Steve Duck, Friends,For Life: The Psychology  of Personal Relationships
Joseph Epstein, Friendship: An Expose

Next Socratic Conversation: Thursday, 5/29.

Talk-About: Ralph Nader at Barnes at Noble – Apr 22

Talk-About: Ralph Nader on his new book, “Unstoppable”

Barnes and Noble Booksellers, Union Square

33 E 17th, NYC

Tuesday, 22 April  6:30 pm

RSVP at http://www.meetup.com/Conversations-New-York/events/171441732/

 
Nader_jacket
 

“Unstoppable: The Emerging Left-Right Alliance to Dismantle the Corporate State”

As the media nearly overflows with stories about congressional stalemates and voter polarization, veteran activist and author Ralph Nader grows more convinced that self-described conservatives, progressives, and libertarians have much more in common than many of them still believe. In fact, he insists in this timely book, an alliance between the right and the left is emerging that holds the potential to reverse the insidious growth of the corporate state, with its dominant lobbying-power, its evisceration of civil liberties, and perpetuation of overseas conflicts. With the resilient optimism that his supporters have come to expect, his Unstoppable paints a hopeful picture of an emerging coalition.

This is a free lecture. We will meet at Barnes and Noble, and afterwards re-convene at a local café for a conversation to share our thoughts about Nader’s point of view.

About the Moderator:  Laurence Mailaender works in the technology industry, doing research aimed at improving wireless systems. He has a PhD in Electrical Engineering, and spent 12 years as a researcher in Bell Labs. Currently he develops advanced communication and GPS-geolocation systems for customers in various agencies of the U.S. Government.

Valuing Contingency: Educating Towards A Sense of Possibility – Mar 3

The University Seminar on Innovation in Education 

and
The University Seminar on Ethics, Moral Education, and Society
Present
 
​​

Valuing Contingency:

Educating Towards A Sense of Possibility 
Speaker: Maxine McClintock, Ph.D.
Independent Scholar
Kindly RSVP to reserve a placegrossassoc@aol.com​  and http://www.meetup.com/Conversations-New-York/events/165487202/
Please bring this invitation and a photo ID for admission to the building.
 
Monday, March 3, 2014
7:00-9:00 pm
Faculty House, Columbia University
(see address and location below)

Maxine McClintock will discuss her purposes and key themes from her recently published book, Letters of Recommendation. The book presents a conversation about educational aspirations through a fictional exchange of letters. The title hints at the angst students and their parents feel about getting accepted by college, employer, and the world at large.  But that’s the backdrop.  A girl, Emilia, who appears to be among the best and the brightest of her senior class, asks an admired teacher, Doc, for a letter of recommendation supporting her early admission to a top college.  The book starts as Emilia withdraws her request, beginning to doubt where life is leading her, and why, and what she really wants to do.  Doc senses the importance of her concerns and responds to them.  Letters result, back and forth throughout the school year, with subtle attention to Emilia’s emerging sense of self and Doc’s presence, both humane and professional.
Letters depicts what goes on as good education takes place.  It affirms a student’s self-reliance in the face of felt uncertainties.  It also affirms a teacher’s trust that her presence as a full, human person has value and meaning in carrying on the work of education.  The letters themselves don’t exemplify an instructional method; they are a literary device for concentrating the reader’s attention on the inner life of a student and her teacher.  The letters create a pedagogic dialog.  And situating the dialog in an elite private school isn’t meant to celebrate the rich and the famous.  It’s a way to set aside all the material complications, which intrude in our lives and make it difficult to concentrate on what’s essential–essential, not only for the few, but for all of us.
“In writing Letters of Recommendation, I distill reflections about education gathered over the course of a full career teaching in high school and college for over 35 years.  For the last half of my career I taught history at the Trinity School, one of New York City’s elite private schools. This experience convinces me that the challenges in education are not so much the instrumental questions of how to achieve the external goals people associate with schooling, but ones concerning the personal formation of purposes and life expectations. I look forward to conversing with participants in the seminar about why these dimensions of education are so important, and so difficult.”
You can find a statement of key themes, indication of intended audiences, and some reader reactions at Maxine’s website, http://www.maxinemcclintock.com.

To augment the fellowship among members, you are warmly invited to join other members for dinner at Faculty House at 5:30 PM.  Dinner at Faculty House, a varied and ample buffet (including wine), is $25, which must be paid for by check made    at the beginning of the meal.  If you intend to join us for dinner you must let us know via email a week in advance.
DIRECTIONS:  Faculty House is located on Columbia University’s East Campus on Morningside Drive, north of 116th Street.  Enter Wien Courtyard through the gates on 116 Street between Amsterdam Avenue and Morningside Drive. Walk toward the north end of the courtyard, then turn right toward Morningside Drive.  Faculty House will be the last building on the right.
BACKGROUND: This seminar is jointly sponsored by the Columbia University Seminars on Innovation in Education, and on Ethics, Moral Education, and Society.
The Seminar on Innovation in Education is co-chaired by Ronald Gross, who also conducts the Socratic Conversations at the Gottesman Libraries, and Robert McClintock who is John L. and Sue Ann Weinberg Professor Emeritus in the Historical and Philosophical Foundations of Education at Teachers College. Founded in 1970, the Seminar explores the process of learning in individuals, organizations, and society throughout the lifespan and via major institutions.
The Seminar on Ethics, Moral Education and Society, chaired by Michael Schulman,  brings together scholars from psychology, philosophy, sociology, political theory, education, religion and other disciplines to explore issues in ethics, moral education, moral development, moral motivation, moral decision making and related topics.
Upcoming 2013-14 seminar dates:  no Feb, Mar 3, Apr 7, May 5.
Columbia University encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities.  University Seminar participants with disabilities who anticipate needing accommodations or who have questions about physical access may contact the Office of Disability Services at 212-854-2388 or disability@columbia.edu.  Disability accommodations, including sign-language interpreters, are available on request.  Requests for accommodations must be made two weeks in advance.  On campus, seminar participants with disabilities should alert a Public Safety Officer that they need assistance accessing campus.
   _________________________________________________________________
    Michael Schulman, chair, Ethics, Moral Education, and Society, mdschlmn41@yahoo.com
     Ron Gross, co-chair, Innovation in Education, ​​grossassoc@aol.com