Our responsibilities in the world

by Kate Monteiro

Two of the most popular bromides about history: “History is written by the victors” and “Those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it” came crashing together for me this morning when I read the Texas Tribune’s article “Hijacking History” about the Texas State Board of Education’s “hammering out” the version of American history that will be taught to high school students across the country for the next 10 or 20 years.

For those of you who don’t know much about the textbook markets, the centralized curriculum decisions of the Texas State Board of Education – a market of 4.7 million textbooks – is in essence the tail that wags the dog. Your textbook has to fit the Texas curriculum or it doesn’t get published for use anywhere else. Texas determines what gets put in your child’s textbook.

So why’s that a problem? Whatever your political bent, and I’m not delusional enough to think that my Dartmouth classmates have changed all that much in the last 25 years, as an educated American you should be very worried about this process. Among the details of the process? Appointees to the committees writing curriculum (not just in History, but in 16 other areas as well) need not have any expertise in either the subject area or education. All recommendations of the committees are reviewed by panels of six “expert reviewers”. In the case of the history panel, 2 of the 6 were evangelists with no training in history or education.

Why post something here? Because it’s our responsibility. Our Dartmouth education comes with strings you know. We can not abandon the education of our children and the future of our republic to the misinformation, the intentional denigration of knowledge and learning and the imposition of particular sectarian religious viewpoints.

Just because you don’t live in Texas, doesn’t mean you can ignore what happens there.

Shades of Green

dart85_logoOK, who knows the background on why our Class Newsletter was called Shades of Green? I seem to recall a soap opera or something that some of our classmates wrote while we were at Dartmouth. Jim Caras, Alison Frankel, you know more, don’t you? Dish…

Matt Dickerson’s New Book

51DjKnMBryL._SS500_My latest book – my 7th published since graduation – has just hit the market.  (It has an official copyright date of January, 2009, and an official release date of December 1, 2008, but it has already shipped and is now available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, etc.  Go ahead and make sense of that, if you can. And, of course, go ahead and order some copies for your holiday gifts.)

The title is <a href=”http://www.amazon.com/Narnia-Fields-Arbol-Environmental-Culture/dp/0813125227″>Narnia and the Fields of Arbol: the Environmental Vision of C.S. Lewis</a> (Amazon link). (The subtitle probably says most clearly what the book is about.) (Click Read More for well, more….)

It is from the University Press of Kentucky, in their Culture of the Land series (on New Agrarianism). Though it’s only been out a couple days, it has already been reviewed in the Library Journal, which is available online at http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6607290.html.
The book was co-authored with David O’Hara. It’ll probably be weeks to months before a lot more reviews start coming out.

I’ve already been doing some traveling and speaking on the subject, with recent trips to Marquette University in Milwaukee and the University of Wisconsin at Madison.

Where am I now?  I am a (full) professor in the Program of Environmental Studies and the department of Computer Science  at Middlebury College (where I’ve been since 1989 when I finished my PhD at Cornell where I studied both Comptuer Science and Old English Language and Literature), and I also teach in the Writing Program at Middlebury and am the Director of the New England Young Writers Conference at Breadloaf.  I am in regular contact with several 86s and 87s in this neck of Vermont (including my previous editor at my newspaper, my current editor, and a colleague in my department), but I don’t see many 85s.

Matthew Dickerson

Laura Tyson Li Book Tour

IMG_0533_1_1will be speaking about “Madame Chiang Kai-shek: China’s Eternal First Lady,” recently published by Atlantic Monthly Press, in Los Angeles and San Francisco April 28-30 and I hope to see you there.

Thank you, Laura Tyson Li

Saturday April 28, 2007 — 2 PM talk/booksigning, Chinese Historical Society of Southern California, Los Angeles. www.chssc.org Contact: George Yin 323-333-5534

Sunday April 29, 2007 — 10:30 am Sunday April 29, panel discussion on biography. Los Angeles Times Festival of Books www.latimes.com/extras/festivalofbooks/

Monday April 30, 2007 — 6 PM talk and book signing, World Affairs Council, San Francisco www.itsyourworld.org

 

Todd Cranford Joins Patton Boggs

Todd CranfordFormer House Financial Services Committee Senior Counsel Todd L. Cranford
Joins Patton Boggs LLP

Washington, D.C., April 23—Patton Boggs LLP is pleased to announce that Todd L. Cranford has joined the firm as Of Counsel in the Washington, D.C. office. Mr. Cranford’s practice will focus on assisting clients with Public Policy, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement, capital markets, and corporate governance-related matters.

Before joining Patton Boggs, Mr. Cranford was Senior Counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services, advising Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA) and other members on a breadth of substantive policy and legal issues coming before the committee. Specifically, he dealt with mutual fund reform, implementation of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) of 2002, hedge funds, oversight of national securities exchanges, and credit rating agencies, while also focusing on market structure issues and securities arbitration.

He held a judicial clerkship with Hon. Anna Diggs Taylor, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, from 1988 to 1990. Mr. Cranford attended Columbia University School of Law, earning a J.D. in 1988 and graduated with an A.B. from Dartmouth College in 1985.

Laura Tyson Li Book Launch Party

tysonLaura Tyson Li ’85 invites all her classmates to her book launch party. See above for details. In MADAME CHIANG KAI-SHEK: China’s Eternal First Lady Laura, a former correspondent for the Financial Times, tells the story of an extraordinary woman who symbolizes America’s long, vexed love affair with China, as well as China’s own struggle to define itself as a world power. Brilliant, charismatic, and glamorous, she was both celebrated as “the world’s greatest living woman” and condemned as a scheming and manipulative “Dragon Lady.”

Check out Laura’s website at www.lauratysonli.com for some reviews and more, but I think “…a stunning achievement. Readers will be mesmerized…” gives you a pretty good idea how the press likes Laura’s work. Visit the site and buy the book!

Anne Johnson

Pete and I are both very busy.  Pete and Jim Leightheiser are in business together.  Jim keeps us apprised of several folks in the Boston and Hanover area.  I work for a non-profit focused on sustainable material systems and am the director of an industry working group.  I am having a great time as it is essentially directing a business that is focused on issues that I am really interested in.  I had been working part time while my girls were small, but the job has grown and so have my hours.  Our girls are 8 and 4 and our life pretty much revolves around, among, and between them.  We are having a great time watching their small lives grow big.  One of the best questions of the weekend was from Eva, my four year old – Mom, if the earth is spinning why don’t I get dizzy?  Thus followed the acceleration/deceleration preschool lecture.   It gets more interesting everyday.

Margot Buckels Miyashiro

Margot Buckels Miyashiro checked in with some news and some classmate sightings:

It’s been a lonnnnnnng time since we graduated.  I’m currently hoping to bring my family back for reunion [this] summer.

I’ve been in Sacramento, California for the past 16 years, where I met my husband, Robert.  We have two daughters who are 9 & 11.   I went to graduate school in Seattle and got a masters in public policy.  I originally moved to California to work for the state legislature, and then state government.  After my oldest daughter was born, I decided to go the full-time mom route.  It’s been great!  These days I’m busy volunteering at their school, leading a Girl Scout Troop, and yes, being a “soccer mom.”   For my own fun, I learned to row crew about 7 years ago.  It has totally hooked me and I’m still rowing with one of the local teams.  One day I even found a discarded “Dartmouth Crew” t-shirt in the boathouse.  It now hangs in my closet.  Pretty cool!  I’m hoping I might be able to snag a spot in the alumni row session at reunion.

Once, about 5 years ago, Cheryl Chow came through Sacramento.  She was cool as ever.  I met her for dinner, downtown.  When I got to the restaurant, she was sitting at the bar, holding an unlit cigar and a guy was hitting on her.  Doesn’t that sound like Cheryl?

Daniel Heyman

Hello to the Dartmouth class of ’85,

jordan_sana_abbasI just returned from spending a week in Amman, Jordan, with a group of lawyers from Philadelphia, Detroit, and London, as well as a journalist and a photographer from the states interviewing victims of torture from Iraq. Each day, I listened to interviews with the victims as I made dry point portraits of the victims.  Many of these portraits have text that I write down as I hear it from the translators.  When I return to Philadelphia late this spring, I will print these portraits, along with the texts into either a portfolio or an artist’s book.  I am put daily reports on my website, under the “news” section, which describe the interviews as well as my thoughts.  I thought I would let you know about the project, as it is truly fascinating, and I am very privileged to have been invited.  This project is partially funded with a grant from the Independence Foundation, and the 5 County Arts Fund.  www.danielheyman.com