Humility and Perspective-Taking: A Review of Alan Jacobs’s How to Think

In Alan Jacobs’s important new book How to Think: A Survival Guide for a World at Odds, he locates thought within our social context and all of the complexities that situation involves: our desire to fit into our current group or an aspirational in-group, our repulsion from other groups, our use of a communal (but … Continue reading Humility and Perspective-Taking: A Review of Alan Jacobs’s How to Think

A Conversation with Data: Prospecting Victorian Words and Ideas

[An open access, pre-print version of a paper by Fred Gibbs and myself for the Autumn 2011 volume of Victorian Studies. For the final version, please see Victorian Studies at Project MUSE.]   Introduction “Literature is an artificial universe,” author Kathryn Schulz recently declared in the New York Times Book Review, “and the written word, … Continue reading A Conversation with Data: Prospecting Victorian Words and Ideas

Some Thoughts on the Hacking the Academy Process and Model

I'm delighted that the edited version of Hacking the Academy is now available on the University of Michigan's DigitalCultureBooks site. Here are some of my quick thoughts on the process of putting the book together. (For more, please read the preface Tom Scheinfeldt and I wrote.) 1) Be careful what you wish for. Although we … Continue reading Some Thoughts on the Hacking the Academy Process and Model

Using WordPress as a Book-Writing Platform

I've had a few people ask about the writing environment I'm using for The Ivory Tower and the Open Web (introduction posted a couple of days ago). I'm writing the book entirely in WordPress, which really has matured into a terrific authoring platform. Some notes: 1) The addition of the TinyMCE WYSIWYG text-editing tools made … Continue reading Using WordPress as a Book-Writing Platform