Crucial Minutia
it's the little things...

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Cristina Pippa
All the World: Spread the Word
2 Comments | posted April 19th, 2007 at 09:40 am by Cristina Pippa

Court's book

“She really inspired me. I still call her Professor.”

So many of us thought of women and girls we know, and maybe ourselves, who too easily identify with Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters: The Frightening New Normalcy of Hating Your Body. If only we could have fit hundreds more of them and the men who love them into the narrow Lower East Side bar where one of our favorite Crucial Minutists read passages from her newly released book.

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Joie Jager-Hyman
Kidz Today: Your “H” Questions Answered
5 Comments | posted April 05th, 2007 at 01:02 pm by Joie Jager-Hyman

A few weeks ago, I wrote about my interactions with “H”, a former Harvard Hopeful who revealed a major lie and was subsequently cast out of Fat Envelope Frenzy fame (see my first post for the whole story). Since then, I’ve received numerous emails and telephone calls with similar themes. In general, people start by offering their sympathy (with the exception of my good friend Ben Wakelin, who scolded me on the blogosphere by–correctly–pointing out that I had a hand in getting myself into this situation). Then, they usually move on to the following comments:

What was “H” thinking? How did he plan to get away with this?


You should totally use this material in your book. It shows the lengths that kids will go to in this achievement-at-all-costs culture.

People seem to understand my response to the first comment more than my reaction to the second.

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Kimberlee Auerbach
Therapy Thursdays: Cliff Notes
4 Comments | posted March 29th, 2007 at 05:35 pm by Kimberlee Auerbach

Ever wonder about the difference between cognitive therapy and psychoanalysis? Neuropsychology and Psychiatry? Or is it a toss up between life coach and philosophical counselor for you?

I was talking to Theo about therapy on our way back to the city from writers group the other night. I was saying how hard it is to find the right therapist when you’re depressed, how your power of assessment is lower when you’re vulnerable, how it’s close to impossible to know if someone is a quack when you’re desperate.

My father used to say that only 1% of any professional is competent and that there is no real way to determine the competency of therapists. Sure, reputations develop. Trustworthy people give referrals. You can look up criminal records. But how do you really know if you are seeing someone good? Or should I say, good for you?

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Joie Jager-Hyman
Kidz Today: Our Failing Colleges
2 Comments | posted March 28th, 2007 at 11:30 am by Joie Jager-Hyman

Recently, there has been much discussion on the need to increase educational attainment to insure American preeminence in a competitive global marketplace. However, little attention has been paid to whether or not students who enter college actually graduate with the skills they need to be competitive in the workplace.

The National Assessment of Adult Literacy indicates that between 1993 and 2003, average prose literacy (the ability of students to read basic texts, such as newspapers and magazines) has declined for all students, including those with at least some college education or a bachelors degree. Only 66 percent of full-time four-year college students graduate within six years, which is approximately the same amount of time it now takes the average student to complete a bachelor’s degree. These statistics are unacceptable. Without oversight or accountability, the continued ability of American postsecondary institutions to produce a competent 21st century workforce will remain in question.

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Kate Torgovnick
You Can’t Make This Stuff Up: Law Students Get Jiggy Wit It.
2 Comments | posted March 28th, 2007 at 07:02 am by Kate Torgovnick

Law students aren’t exactly known for being, well, fun. But tonight through Friday, the kids at NYU Law School are throwing their annual Law Revue, which is a hybrid of sketchy comedy and musical numbers put on by law students who love theater. A sample bit: “Bill It,” a send up of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” video where a gang of partners dance-off with a gang of associates. Expect lots of lawyerly jokes about things you don’t exactly get and professors you’ve never had. The students think of it as a last hurrah before exams.

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