July 2007 Archives

Colorblind or colorbind?

At first glance, the work of these CLA researchers may seem to dovetail with the spirit of Proposition 54 and its assumption that classification can never serve good purposes.

A homogenous mosaic

Dysfunction's Function

Hazardous to your health

Last April, the New York Times reported a sharp up-tick in infant mortality rates in the South, a rise that was especially pronounced within the state's disproportionately poor African American population.

David Wilkins

American Indian Studies

David Wilkins will never forget Lois Louis and Vine Deloria, two professors who made an enormous difference in his life.

David Noble

American Studies

David Noble depends on classroom learning to teach his students that they're studying real people with real problems.

Jason McGrath

“If you need to engage in analysis and interpretation, in-class learning provides something that online learning can't, because in the give-and-take process of hearing and contemplating others' ideas and testing your own against them, you will actually come to a much deeper understanding."

Participating in class discussions, says McGrath, enables students “to approach cultural texts on a more sophisticated and complex level, and to get a richer experience of culture."

Professors Ponder... The Importance of Classroom Learning

In this age of experiential learning and cyberlearning, the art of human interaction in the classroom continues to thrive. Even large lecture classes have taken on new life. Why do classrooms still matter? What can students get from the classroom that they might not be able to find online or in the field? Here's what some CLA faculty members are saying:

Biking to Discover

From July through December 2007, Louis Mendoza, chair of the University of Minnesota's Department of Chicano Studies, will bicycle around the perimeter of the United States.

Teaching Reconciliation

Catherine Guisan and her students discuss the meaning of the term political reconciliation

Difference 101: A Short Syllabus


A year ago, Alaska Senator Tad Stevens became the dunce of the day when he referred to the Internet as a "series of tubes" on the floor of the U.S. Senate. Stevens's wording might have been crude, but it raised an honest question. What, exactly, is the Internet?

Deep Impact

Professor Dan KerstenNeuroscientist Dan Kersten works to understand how the space in front of us is processed visually by the brain, allowing us to negotiate on a second-to-second basis--driving a car through traffic, maneuvering a pen over paper, dribbling a basketball toward a net. Learn more.

Class Matters

What's happening in CLA's undergrad classrooms? We checked in with one of the smallest—and one of the largest. (Just so you know … 42 percent of CLA classes have fewer than 20 students.)
By Laine Bergeson

On the Spot: Growth

What role does the CLA experience play in shaping students' identities? At the end of last semester, we asked CLA juniors and seniors to reflect on how they've changed since they first entered college.
Interviews by Andrew Hogan

CLA faculty make their marks on CLA, Minnesota, and the world.

Checking Our Blind Spots

World-reowned psychologist Fanny Cheung has worked to eliminate cultural and scientific blind spots at home and abroad.
By Danny LaChance

Just to Know

CLA graduate Ted Meinhover writes a letter home about his experiences in Indonesia.

Little Boxes

What are you thinking when you check those race and ethnicity boxes on forms and applications? Four CLA scholars have been studying the role those boxes play in maintaining and eradicating social inequality.

In the Zone

CLA graduate Jeff Ochs started Breakthrough, an organization which helps underserved students get ready for college.
By Karen Olson

New Release

How do you make a documentary about prisoners without showing barbed wire, leg shackles, or prison bars? Ph.D. Candidate Rachel Raimist has a poetic answer.
By Danny LaChance

Trading Spaces

Kale Fajardo finds that despite the idea that we live in a small world, the connections that space and technology facilitate can also reinforce cultural identification.

Haunted Places

Space may be a language, but in some cases, place is what we turn to when language fails, when we can't adequately express the contradictory, inchoate feelings we have about the past. To illustrate that point, associate professor of geography Karen Till recounts a story told by Hanno Loewy, director of the Frankfurt Center for Holocaust Studies.

Scenes from the Mall

On a recent stroll down the Mall in Washington, D.C., Elaine Tyler May flashed on a conversation she'd had almost two decades ago inside the Smithsonian's Air and Space Museum. Her son Daniel, ten at the time, had been gazing, mouth agape, at the planes suspended from the ceiling.

Space Crafts

We may take for granted the spaces we inhabit, but CLA scholars who study space and place don't. From the cul-de-sacs of suburbs to the berths of trans-Pacific cargo ships, we shape and inhabit space--and are shaped by it--in ways that have profound implications in our lives.

By Danny LaChance

Up and Coming

CLA's new K-12 outreach office is closing the gap between the University's learning spaces and Minnesota's underserved communities.
By Emily Sohn

Head of the Class

In an age of on-line and experiential learning, why do the four walls of the classroom still matter?
By Danny LaChance

- Laine Bergeson contributed to this story


Christine Baeumler illustrates science's most pressing concerns—literally.
By Linda Shapiro

Life-Shaping Art

Local high school students blur art and life on the University's stage.
By Linda Shapiro

Connecting the Silos

Barbara Frey explores the link between human rights and small firearms.
By Mary Shafer

Travels through space and time

Steven Rosenstone writes about the transforming University of Minnesota.



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