In this TED talk, Sir Ken Robinson makes an entertaining and profoundly moving case for creating an education system that nurtures (rather than undermines) creativity.
Source: TED talk
Post submitted by: Miqi Cos
subitize \SOO-bi-tahyz\ , verb:
To perceive at a glance the number of items presented.
“The road to hell is paved with good intentions”
Merely intending to do good, without actually doing it, is of no value.
You’ve been waiting for this season since the Fall, terribly missed it during Winter, saw a glimpse of it during Spring, and it’s finally here! Summer always signifies a time of relaxation, catching up on your to-read list, going to the beach, and soaking up the sunshine. For many students, summer is still a time to take classes and get ahead in their studies. What does summer look like to you?
Whether it’s reading a book in the beach or going on a trip abroad, summer is a time to do things that you don’t usually have time to do during the rest of the year. So, what’s summer get-away?
Post submitted by: Miqi Cos
“Life is short; art is long”
Good work takes a long time to accomplish.
chockablock \CHOK-uh-BLOK\, adjective:
1. Extremely full; crowded; jammed.
2. Nautical. Having the blocks drawn close together, as when the tackle is hauled to the utmost.
1. In a crowded manner: books piled chockablock on the narrow shelf.
On June 21, 2012, the Pew Research Center released a comprehensive report on “The Rise of Asian-Americans” which detailed Asians as the fastest-growing and highest-achieving racial group in the country. Although this “model minority” praise highlights the achievements of Asian-American immigrants, it is also viewed by scholars as potentially harmful to the overall portrayal of this group. Researchers and advocates say that it overlooks the significant disparities within the Asian-American community; furthermore, the study does not account for the segment of the Asian population such as Laotian and Cambodian, who often have lower retention rates and low-paying jobs. For more on the study, read here.
Do you think that this study is more damaging than beneficial to the Asian-American community? Moreover, in your opinion, does the myth of the “model minority” obstruct the issues that Asian-Americans still face today?
Post submitted by: Miqi Cos
“Hitch your wagon to a star”
Aim high; hope for great things.
instauration \in-staw-REY-shuhn\ , noun:
1. Renewal; restoration; renovation; repair.
2. Obsolete. An act of instituting something; establishment.
In The Souls of Black Folk, W.E.B. Dubois pinpoints the major issue that America faces during the 20th century: “The problem of the 20th century is the problem of the color-line.” Dubois suggests the idea of race as a social construct, symbolizing it as a “Veil” that obstructs America from accepting her black people.
Dubois’ Souls of Black Folk examines the struggle for black Americans to synthesize their two identities: African and American. While this book speaks to themes of nationalism and racial dynamics, its universality derives from its ability to relate to any individual’s (particularly in our immigrant-based society) struggle to forge an identity and sense of belonging in America.
The Souls of Black Folk is a classic read—in the words of my professor: “Don’t graduate college without reading it!”
Post submitted by: Miqi Cos
A person who causes contention or discord.
“Feed a cold; starve a fever”
Eating will help cure a cold; not eating will help cure a fever
When you first begin writing, you scarcely imagine that you will have too many words on your paper. But alas, minutes before your paper is due, you find yourself well over the word limit. Here are some tips to help you cut down your wordiness:
1. When editing, try to reduce long clauses to shorter phrases:
Wordy: The clown who was in the center ring was riding a tricycle.
Revised: The clown in the center ring was riding a tricycle.
2. Try to reduce phrases into single words:
Wordy: The clown at the end of the line tried to sweep up the spotlight.
Revised: The last clown tried to sweep up the spotlight.
3. Avoid There is, There are, and There were as sentence openers when There adds nothing to the meaning of a sentence:
Wordy: There is a prize in every box of Quacko cereal.
Revised: A prize is in every box of Quacko cereal.
Wordy: There are two security guards at the gate.
Revised: Two security guards stand at the gate.
4. Don’t overwork very, really, totally, and other modifiers that add little or nothing to the meaning of a sentence:
Wordy: By the time she got home, Merdine was very tired.
Revised: By the time she got home, Merdine was exhausted.
Wordy: She was also really hungry.
Revised: She was also hungry.
5. Wherever possible, replace redundant expressions:
|at this point in time||now|
|by means of||by|
|green in color||green|
|in the event that||if|
Post submitted by: Miqi Cos
\ gluhch \
1. to swallow.
“Brevity is the soul of wit”
Intelligent speech and writing should aim at using few words.
Brené Brown, a researcher, social worker, and “story-teller” at the University of Houston, has researched how disconnection and shame are underpinned by disadvantageous responses to the natural feeling of vulnerability. Essentially, she argues that those able to connect deeply with others are those able to overcome shame derived from “excruciating vulnerability.” They feel worthy of connection. They achieve this by recognizing that “what makes you vulnerable makes you beautiful” — that it’s necessary and fundamental. Embracing vulnerability, such individuals are able to let themselves “be seen. Deeply seen. Seen with vulnerability.”
Although I have minor academic quibbles with some of Brené’s generalizations about society, I definitely connect to her research and what she says about it. In part, this is due to that fact that I significantly empathize with her. In the video, she describes having a breakdown as the result of her research, questioning the validity of the path she’d taken in life, and fought “a street fight” against accepting and embracing vulnerability for a year.
I constantly second-guess my decisions (and decisions I haven’t yet made but expect to make in the future). As an English and Psychology double major deciding between a Ph.D. in English and a Ph.D. in Psychology, I get nervous: if I pursue English, will my work be completely irrelevant & unread — will I be able to contribute Important Ideas even just to academia?; if I pursue Psychology, will I be impinging through quantification on the subjective human experience?
Oddly (or perhaps fittingly, as I put so much stock in the writing process), I am most vulnerable in my writing (for a documented account of my writing process, see The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock). For me, writing is an act of representation. It is a form of self-visibility (forgive me, poststructuralists). It requires being seen and scrutinized. Although I still harshly criticize/doubt my writing and the ideas contained therein, I have come to accept that flaws will exist in my work, that these flaws are amplified in my eyes, and that my expectations are often destructively lofty. I try to simultaneously acknowledge the importance of what I’m saying while not taking my work too seriously — a liberating mindset that generally allows me to do more better in my writing.
Do you agree with Brown’s centralization of vulnerability to our ability to connect, our self-valuation, our sense of shame? Have you ever felt vulnerable? How do you deal?
As for myself, I endorse Brown’s advice:
“Let ourselves be seen. Deeply seen. Seen with vulnerability.”
Post by Lee.
Click HERE to view the video of Brene Brown giving her TED talk
Brene Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work, who has devoted the past decade studying vulnerability, courage, shame, and authenticity in a group of people she has described as “wholehearted.” She described these people as those “who have strength of love and belonging because they believe they are worth it.” She argues that vulnerability wasn’t a sign of weakness, but an indicator that you were alive, and once we embrace it, “we have to allow ourselves to be seen.” But society has developed to be afraid of vulnerability and thus has turned to numbing the weaknesses we see within ourselves in order to seem strong. But she argues that if we numb vulnerability we also “numb joy, gratitude, happiness, and then we are miserable and we try to find purpose and meaning and become vulnerable” again. In the end, she says that we must let ourselves “be seen, deeply seen, vulnerably seen” in order to have the ability to love with our whole hearts.
As I was watching Brown talk, I felt as if I have finally found something to describe what I have experienced for the last couple of years. As devoted readers have probably read before, my experience during my first two years of college was a time that I exponentially numbed my emotions. I thought that I was so clever by turning to the technique of becoming apathetic to my struggles and internal strife of wanting to become a better student but feeling like I was failing to do so. One point during Brown’s talk deeply struck me; the fact that we cannot “numb selectively.” I was so caught up with numbing the negativity and sadness I felt, that I didn’t realize how truly miserable I was. I finally realized that I wasn’t truly feeling joy or happiness if I was so caught up in becoming apathetic to my problems. I finally found the strength to face the dark aspects of myself I had previously draped with numbness, and now have discovered a sense of worthiness that Brown so emphasized in her talk. I truly do feel so much happier and grateful for the life I live and the amazing people in my life.
I feel that my experience is not uncommon, and that there are so many people in the world that have turned to numbness in order to avoid feeling vulnerable. A previous reflection I wrote about taking risks is similar to Brown’s message that we need to be vulnerably seen in order to fully embrace happiness. So I leave this piece of advice for all of our readers: when faced with a situation where the outcome is unknown, take the risk even if you are deathly afraid of rejection or becoming vulnerable. Experiencing these feelings are a sign of strength, not weakness, and the good you can receive by opening yourself to being vulnerable can be more than you can ever imagine.
For this development we were asked to watch a video which showcased a researcher named Brene Brown. Brene Brown gives a presentation on what it means to be vulnerable and the societal and individual implications of vulnerability.
Brown highlighted the idea that we as human beings are driven by connection. In other words, we all seek to make connections with other people, whether it is on a personal or professional level. The process of making connections is what gives us purpose in life. So what drives our abilities to make these connections and what unravels them? This is where the idea of vulnerability comes in. From what I gathered from listening to Brown’s words is that we need to have a sense of love and belonging in order to build connections. The only way that this is possible is by allowing ourselves to be vulnerable and more importantly by believing in our own worthiness. People who have a strong sense of love and belonging believe that they are worthy of that belonging and connection. However, people who do not have a strong sense of love and belonging feel unworthy, which in turn leads to a feeling of shame exemplified by their “I’m not ____ enough” mentality.
I feel like I could personally identify with some of the ideas introduced in this video. One line that particularly resonated with me is when Brown said “you can not selectively numb emotion”. It again goes back to the idea of vulnerability. We all numb vulnerability because we want to appear strong and protect ourselves from being hurt. But what we probably do not realize is that when we numb vulnerability we are numbing every other emotion as well; we are slowly blocking our ability to love, be happy, be remorseful, be proud, everything. I know this is something that I have been guilty of for most of my life. When my father passed away, I shut off all feeling. I did not want to let my guard down and be vulnerable because I knew that all my emotions would come rushing out, and I did not know how to handle it. I could not bring myself to be happy because I felt guilty and undeserving of happiness. I slowly began to realize that by shutting down I was disconnecting myself from everyone around me. So I sought solace in loved ones and now, after a long journey of self-discovery, I am finally able to allow myself to be vulnerable. Thus, I can honestly say that I feel more complete and happy now more than ever.
The overall message that I took away from Brown’s presentation that I would like to impart upon you all is that vulnerability is not a sign of weakness, but rather a sign of strength. You do not have to like it but you must recognize that vulnerability is necessary. The sooner that realization is made, the better off you will be.
To here the wisdom of Brene Brown click here
Post Submitted by Jadessa
I really connected with Brene Brown’s “The Power of Vulnerability” because I can personally relate to it. Brown is a researcher in social work who also dedicates time to “story-telling” as she refers to her work as a motivational speaker. In this speech she pinpoints a significant issue that many people struggle with—vulnerability. As a researcher Brown discovered that our feelings of unworthiness and not being good enough stem from our fear of vulnerability. She admits that she herself had to go to therapy after making this quite insightful discovery. With her down-to-earth and comical aura, Brown successfully argues the point that being vulnerable is a good thing and that when we realize this we come to the understanding that we are worthy of being loved and, thus, able to connect to others more deeply.
One quote that really stood out to me was when Brown revealed, “vulnerability is the core of shame and fear and our struggle for worthiness, but it appears that it’s also the birthplace of joy, of creativity, of belonging, of love.” I came to a similar realization starting my freshman year here at UCLA. Although it is uncomfortable to admit at times, I was molested at a very young age. This experience impacted my self-image for many years, and I didn’t know how to deal with it until I began to discuss it with a therapist starting freshman year. Through our conversations I realized that while this was an unfortunate experience, it does not have to define me. I do not have to allow my past memories to haunt me day in and day out. Yes—it made me vulnerable. Yes—it impacted my future interactions with the opposite sex in a negative way. But did it destroy me? No. Have I now come to terms with it and learned to embrace the past as hurtful as it was? Yes. I felt ashamed and even unworthy of love for many years, but Brown’s speech reminded me of something very special.
I remember an older gentleman once telling me when I was young: “Casey, you have a very innocent and kind view of humanity. That makes you very vulnerable to a selfish and evil world like the one we live in. But never let someone tell you that your vulnerability is a weakness. Being vulnerable is beautiful; you just need to learn how to balance your positive outlook on life with street smarts and reality. Don’t lose hope in humanity. Keep on smiling no matter what people do or say to hurt you.” This advice really resonated with me. As I underwent therapy I learned how to find that balance that man told me about so many years ago. Being vulnerable can bring you joy, just like Brown discovered. Remember this: accepting vulnerability is the first step to growing up. Let’s grow up together
Listen to Brown’s speech here
Post submitted by Casey O’Neill