from the periphery

Or, “how different are we, actually?” (hint: scroll to the end for concrete examples)

Picture an old-fashioned wagon wheel, resting flat in the grass or propped up on its side in a field.

up on the rim - 640

photo: tuchodi

Now hunker down closer and perch your eyeballs just above the outer rim, scanning across to the other side of the wheel from various vantage points along its outer perimeter.

As we progress around the ring, Continue reading

the challenge of ‘soft’

Six months into this eighteen month Deans’ Seminar process, I’ve had the opportunity to engage in a wide range of activities: workshops led by external experts, grassroots student-focused ‘happenings’, and facilitated discussions amongst faculty from across the Institute, to name just a few.

graphic: poster for event

poster by mjennings

While each of these events has had its own unique character, one consistent theme that has emerged for me across them all is the role of the ‘soft’. Those elusive ‘you know it when you see it’ characteristics, sometimes perceived to be extra, ephemeral, ‘not our job’, even ‘weak’ attributes that — over and over — various groups have articulated to be at the core of something very, very important.

Continue reading

power as energy

by Bonnie Benham, with Andrea Olsen and Sarah Springer

In the final hour of our workshop with Mary Brydon-Miller that explored systems of power and privilege our group formed around the concept of power as energy.

swirls by Anders LjungbergQuestion: How can we see power as energy moving through a system rather than a force that dominates a system?

We discussed the benefits to an organization when power might be seen Continue reading

pedagogy is personal

photo of Midd President Laurie Patton delivering the Inaugural Symposium Keynote Address at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

President Laurie Patton at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies

In Laurie Patton’s Inaugural Symposium Keynote Address she includes a light nudge, a suggestion, a challenge perhaps, or simply a note sounded as way-finding signpost: pedagogy.

“If curriculum can be part of our creativity, then pedagogy cannot be far behind.”

Like many of her premises and provocations that evening, Continue reading