Monday, January 19, 2015
Here again just to update you all on the existence of a newish blog, on my main website mike-duffy.com: a little blog called "Writing about writing," where I'm posting something about once a week on writing and criticism and whatever I'm critiquing at the moment. Next up from me expect a couple reviews on some Latin American literature, particularly Horacio Castellanos Moya and Alan Pauls. Also coming soon: I'm tentatively starting work on a little lit magazine here in Portland, I'll open it up to Kickstarter once I have a couple issues going.
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
We complained a lot in grad school about what William Deresiewicz apparently takes aim at here in his new book: namely that the kids we teach are horribly conformist. But I'm wondering if we just refused to respect these kids' peculiar kind of resourcefulness. As a critique of the system and how it encourages conformity, Deresiewicz's sense that they aren't weird enough seems apt. But in thinking about alternatives, what could have been and could be, maybe we have in mind a standard of weirdness these kids just find horribly uninteresting. Perhaps it's us who are too focused on being weird, and not on getting stuff done. Deresiewicz seems to think that being better questioners, better rebels and truth-seekers will solve problems, but what if that's exactly wrong? What if we're holding these kids to an unfair standard? Efficiency is these kids' best quality--maybe they're on to something about actually shutting up for once and producing things. Maybe they are makers, not thinkers. Wondering if that could be a good thing.