Current Reading

This blog is primarily for me to blog my responses to books that I'm reading. Sometimes I blog about other stuff too, though.

I'm currently reading Notes on the Death of Culture: Essays on Spectacle and Society by Mario Vargas Llosa.

Word cloud

Word cloud

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Vanity of vanities, all is vanity

I'm in a dark mood from grading.  If I have to constantly correct errors of subject-verb agreement in papers written by native English speakers from the majority ethnic/racial group, then higher education is pretty much doomed.  I'm emphasizing their ethnic majority status because we can't blame this on some sort of disadvantage.  We can't tell ourselves that "Once we fix [whatever] this will all be better."  We can't tell ourselves that this is just a consequence of disadvantage and we need to be more understanding.  Nope, these kids are from the dominant group.  That means that they ARE the standard.

The dominant group is OK with treating the non-dominant groups as pathological, and compensating for that pathology by giving them the occasional benevolence via "special programs."  The dominant group will periodically allow some sort of largess by which "those people" get their "special program" and if they still don't succeed then the dominant group can write them off with a clear conscience. And if they do succeed, the dominant group can put an asterisk on their success, because they obviously only got there thanks to the "special program" (an asterisk that will make some seethe with resentment while others pat themselves on the back). However, the dominant group will never tolerate their own kids being treated with benevolent condescension.  Good middle-class kids from the dominant group can't possibly be failing, because their kids are (by definition) the measure of success for the mainstream.  Their kids will get degrees.  Period.

We is doomed because schools k-12 failing to teach them writing proper.

Actually, I don't know to what extent I can fault the k-12 system.  What would happen to the suburban high school teacher who failed 80% of the white kids in the class?  What would the next PTA meeting be like if that teacher gave F's to Derek and Ashlee because they didn't learn subject-verb agreement in middle school?  There isn't a teachers' union in the country that could save that foolish teacher.

If you don't make your kids read lots of books, and if you don't demand that they work for high grades (instead of demanding that the teacher give them high grades) then you are directly responsible for my headaches.  Either make your kids study or accept that the public university system will have high health insurance premiums to cover my headache specialist and my inevitable heart surgery.

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