I love the New York Times.

I guess that makes me one of what used to be known as the “Eastern liberal establishment,” or simply an elitist snob. I do love reading well-crafted prose whose ideas flow along, sometimes with thought- or smile-provoking metaphors. Two items in today’s digest are especially pleasing, a review by Maureen Dowd (of a documentary about the Dark Lord we most love to hate), and a piece about the absence of reading. Just because the essay is set in Mexico doesn’t mean it isn’t true here.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/06/opinion/the-country-that-stopped-reading.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20130306

So I forwarded the link to everyone at LSUE, as a seed to grow some changes in research assignments.

Yet the problem is deeper than a couple of programs, isn’t it? The anti-intellectual strain in American history threatens to widen into a flood, drowning the slow pleasurable read in cultural and economic desires:  Instant gratification, popular entertainment, overspecialization, the assembly line, the profit motive and the almighty dollar, impatience and speed: it seems as though our entire society is determined to be in “the stupid party” without realizing it.

So I’m driving to Baton Rouge this afternoon to attend the Louisiana Library Association conference, hoping to meet new colleagues statewide, to see former professors, and to get some good ideas.  On top of my good shoes, I packed three books.

Have a good weekend.

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