Kirby Farrell on understanding the Boston bombing
See Kirby Farrell's new entry in the Denial File regarding the Boston Marathon tragedy. Hover your pointer over EBF Online in the navigation bar above. When the menu drops down, click on The Denial File.
With Dan Liechty and Sheldon Solomon
Corey Anton, Professor of Communication Studies at Grand Valley State U, MI, is a Becker fan, and has been called an “intellectual everyman.” Check him out on YouTube, and you’ll see why. Over three days he will give us 2 lectures and a roundtable, all stimulated by two all-star EBF discussants, Dan Liechty of Illinois State and Sheldon Solomon of Skidmore College NY.
We are lucky that all three will be with us all three days and Sheldon even stays to speak at a Seattle church Sunday, May 12.
We are also fortunate to have sponsors at both campuses, Prof Steen Halling doing the honors at Seattle U and Prof David Domke at the University of Washington. Read More...
By Daniel Sullivan
Julia V. Douthwaite’s The Frankenstein of 1790 and Other Lost Chapters from Revolutionary France is an intriguing contribution to historical and literary scholarship on the era of the French Revolution. The book is fairly wide-ranging, exploring in its four major chapters various aspects of the history of the Revolution and how they were portrayed in the literature of the time as well as more recent works. It is an enticing combination of detailed historical research and healthy theoretical ambition, which should make it engaging at worst and unusually useful at best for a wide range of scholars in the humanities and social sciences.
As an example of the book’s attention to detail, its title is drawn from the recognition by Douthwaite of the significance of an obscure 1790 novel, Le Miroir des événemens actuels (The looking glass of actuality) by François-Félix Nogaret. Despite the fact that this book features a fictional inventor and automaton-builder with a name that is a slight elaboration on Frankenstein, apparently no previous scholar has noted its potential importance for studies of Mary Shelley’s classic. As an example of Douthwaite’s attempts to connect her research to broader theoretical issues and matters of contemporary import, she notes (p. 19) that later literary interpretations of the Women’s March on Versailles cast the Revolution in terms analogous to Becker’s causa sui project, which Becker identified as characteristic of the modern world and about which he became increasingly critical.
By Dan Liechty
Of Recent Interest… is the new collection of essays Facing Cancer and the Fear of Death: A Psychoanalytic Perspective On Treatment, edited by Norman Straker (Jason Aronson Publishers, 2013). This book emerges out of concerns psychiatrist Norman Straker has noticed in current medical education, treatment and policy. In medical education, students are pushed in a direction that most rewards those who are able to set feelings aside, suppress a sense of vulnerability and helplessness, and make treatment decisions in an impersonal manner. This continues in medical education despite the fact that the AMA has explicitly advised that students should be selected giving more weight to interpersonal skills and signals of empathy. Why is it so difficult for medical education to shift in that direction?