Author: David

The Year Reheated

Time, I think, for my end-of-year retrospective. Twelve months of competitive wokeness and assorted mental contortions:

In March, Dr Charlotte Riley, currently employed by the University of Southampton, unveiled her latest feminist innovation, which she titled Patriarchy Chicken, and which entails deliberately and repeatedly colliding with random male commuters. For the Sisterhood, you see. Mr Claude Boudeau thrilled us with his seemingly limitless artistic talents, namely a performance piece titled Cascade. We also witnessed the phenomenon of Brookylnite lefties in search of love via a socialist-only dating platform, with the fiercely egalitarian declaring their revolutionary ambitions to each other, along with their preferred pronouns and various mental health issues. Alas, said platform has not proved an enormous success, resulting instead in disgruntlement, mutual loathing, and demands for romantic quotas.

There’s more, lots of it.

I Bring You Art

The organisers of the event, titled Performance Is Alive, tell us that in order to avoid being “vapid,” they curate only “the best projects based on the merits of the work.” They are, we learn, presenting “art that’s critical and progressive and transgressive.” Gathered talents will “investigate a wide range of social and political topics” while engaging in “durational performance actions” that “allow artists… to employ repetition and endurance.”

Because if there’s one thing art should be, it’s a test of one’s endurance.

You Can’t Afford My Radical Life

I had a revealing conversation recently with a student at an elite university. He said that when he sets his Tinder radius to five miles, about half of the women, mostly other students, said they were “polyamorous” in their bios. Then, when he extended the radius to 15 miles to include the rest of the city and its outskirts, about half of the women were single mothers. The costs created by the luxury beliefs of the former are borne by the latter.

Rob Henderson on wokeness and other luxury beliefs.

Deviant Detected

The rumours were spread – not just rumours, emails, including from the student government – that I was a white supremacist coming to campus with my white nationalist followers to target minorities… They organised safe spaces for my visit. They organised safety teams to guide people to safe spaces with glow sticks if they couldn’t find the safe spaces. In the library, which was the main safe space, they had colouring books for students—college students. It was the craziest thing.

William Jacobson recounts a lively visit to Vassar College.

Those Poor Little Darlings

The Atlantic invites us to feel sorry for thieves caught in the act for the umpteenth time:

Ms Fairley – who invokes racism as a cause of her local notoriety, and whose extensive cache of stolen belongings included other people’s credit cards – is described to us at length and in the softest possible light. We learn of her dysfunctional upbringing, her struggles with a mouldy apartment, and her various drug habits, including “trekking daily to a methadone clinic,” a heroic feat, apparently. Ms Fairley’s inability to attend numerous court dates – for petty theft, mail theft, receiving stolen property, possession of heroin, and child endangerment – is, we learn, due to her having “a lot going on” in her life. In at least one instance, it turns out that what was going on was stealing from a resident she’d previously targeted, and who, while being robbed, again, was waiting to see Ms Fairley appear in court.

 

The fact that Ms Fairley is gay is mentioned too, as if that were somehow relevant or an explanation for credit card fraud and chronic thieving. We’re also told, touchingly, that she has “family members’ names tattooed on her neck.”

Oh, there’s more.

17 Divided By 6 Equals ‘Ow, My Feelings’

It should be apparent that implementing [‘Social-Emotional Learning Theory’] necessarily presupposes some dilution of the traditional nuts-and-bolts curriculum — the diversion of finite class time to topics and methodologies that have nothing to do with mastering, say, long division. The gurus of SEL make no apologies for this. Rather, as [New York mayor, Bill] de Blasio insists in his Fortune piece, “These are hard skills… just like reading and math, that must be taught, practised, and strengthened over time.” SEL’s unflinching emphasis on the so-called “non-cognitive factors” in cognition is bad news for all supporters of no-nonsense education — that is, the kind that doesn’t encourage students to devote class time to communicating their current emotional status to their peers via emojis, as has happened in some SEL implementations.

Steve Salerno on woke education. One of these.

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