This is the second post of a two-part essay on Fahrenheit 451 and its application to colleges and community today.
Reading Fahrenheit 451 sixty years after it was written affords some surprising affirmations of Bradbury’s futuristic vision. Televisions nearly engulf living rooms with 3-D vision and surround sound. Sports occupy center attention. Books are abridged in SparkNotes and WikiNotes. The talking heads of cable news channels prattle incessantly. Video games bombard viewers with a cacophony of colors, characters, and actions. People have earbuds stuffed in flooding them with sound and chatter.
Of all the prescient points of Bradbury’s book, one that stands out most today is the “comfortable people,” the depressed, suicidal people who shun and burn books that make them face excellence, ideas that contradict their positions, and complicated issues. Continue reading The Comfortable People
This is the final post of a three-part essay on the vocation of a student.
What we have examined so far is that college students are first and foremost called to study; this is directly implied in the title “student.” Yet, college students arrive on the doorstep of the university already having grabbed hold of multiple vocations. They have families with whom they are very involved. They have jobs that provide them the ability to pay for some of their daily needs. They have friends that mean more to them than many in older generations can imagine. Many of these students participate in sports and athletic endeavors, and are highly loyal to those social organizations. In other words, even as students arrive at college, they are loaded down with multiple responsibilities that will, inevitably, influence their academic pursuits.
Often times, these pursuits will come into conflict. Continue reading Avoiding Lopsided Vocationalism