Today’s What We’re Reading features a modern history of swearing, a course in online civility, one blogger’s thoughts on eliminating the survey course, summer reading options, and much more.
History in the News
The Modern History of Swearing: Where All the Dirtiest Words Come From
Salon excerpts some of the interesting etymologies of some of our most colorful nouns, verbs, and adjectives.
The GHI has released information on its annual spring lecture series, on the topic of public debt—a timely topic, in light of austerity and debates over US federal government debt.
The Architecture of Seduction
Looking back on Fire Island Pines and its importance to gay culture.
Matthew Frye Jacobson on Why I Became a Historian
Randall Stephens from the Historical Society blog offers another installment of Why I Became a Historian, this time profiling Matthew Frye Jacobson, William Robertson Coe Professor of American Studies and History at Yale University.
Active(ist)? History on Wikipedia
Jonathan McQuarrie at ActiveHistory.ca describes his efforts to edit a Wikipedia page with new scholarship, encouraged by his belief that public engagement for historians can take many forms.
A Course in Online Civility
“From Facebook stalkers to Twitter trolls, from mean-spirited blogs to their mean-spirited reader comments, from false friendships to the cyberbullying that, my students argue, has propelled some of its victims to suicide, social media is toxic.”
Academic Blogging: Pleasure and Credit
“[I]t seems to me there’s a huge danger that blogging would simply be added on to the existing systems for awarding and measuring academic credit.”
The Legitimacy and Usefulness of Academic Blogging Will Shape How Intellectualism Develops
“Academic blogging has become an increasingly popular form, but key questions still remain over whether blog posts should feature more prominently in formal academic discourse.”
Teaching in the Humanities
Doctoring the Doctorate
Reforms include a new fully funded master’s program to train humanities PhDs to be secondary school teachers.
Texas Community College Seeks Dismissal of Tenured Professor
The Chronicle reports on a move to fire a tenured professor who has frequently clashed with administration over labor issues.
Could Flipping the Curriculum Lead to More Jobs and Better Educated Students?
Claire Potter for Tenured Radical asks if eliminating surveys and focusing on applied knowledge-based courses may counteract the negative effects MOOCs potentially pose to higher education teaching jobs.
What Colleges Can Learn from K–12 Education
With better graduation rates than most colleges, high schools may have something to teach higher ed about the benefits of economic and racial diversity.
Summer Reading Options
How to Succeed in Business
Anne Applebaum reviews Lean In and The End of Men and the Rise of Women for the New York Review of Books.
NPR features a book section that lists recent paperback releases, author interviews, and “NPR Bestseller Lists.”
35 Things to Do with All Those Books
Once you have collected a summer stack of books, Buzzfeed has generously offered unique ways of storing them.