Blaise Pascal, PenseĆ© 347: “Man is but a reed, the most feeble thing in nature; but he is a thinking reed. The entire universe need not arm itself to crush him. A vapor, a drop of water suffices to kill him. But, if the universe were to crush him, man would still be more noble than that which killed him, because he knows that he dies and the advantage which the universe has over him; the universe knows nothing of this. All our dignity consists, then, in thought. By it we must elevate ourselves, and not by space and time which we cannot fill. Let us endeavor, then, to think well; this is the principle of morality.”

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Huron County Extract Takes a DIP

Craig Bernthal

Beginning immediately after finals, I'm going on a DIP--a difference in pay leave, for the entire academic year of 2012 to 2013. That's a 15 month bonanza--very heaven.

My main plan is write a book on J. R. R. Tolkien's sacramental vision in The Lord of the Rings. For part of the time I will be at the Hoover Institution with a fellowship, working on literature and ethics. Summer plans include a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela across northern Spain and into Galicia, Luis Costa's homeland.

 I expect that, even as important as this year was at Fresno State, next year will be more so. Many of us, at the beginning this semester, were pessimistic, and even depressed, about the situation of Fresno State and what the faculty could accomplish. I have been amazed at how much we did fend off, how much we did accomplish. Thanks to all of you who have been reading these blog entries and sending me emails in support (which provided the extra motivation to do Senate transcripts). I'm optimistic about the faculty's ability and commitment to defend Fresno State's educational mission no matter what happens next year.

The Huron County Extract will change, becoming more of what I originally intended it to be, a place where I could sound off without editorial restraint about cultural issues from a Roman Catholic and somewhat conservative political perspective. But I'm not signing off on Fresno State issues, though I will be less involved. I expect that, even as important as this year was, next year will be more so.

1 comment:

  1. That sounds like a book that I can't wait to read. Please, I implore you, keep me posted on its progress.