Sunday, August 28, 2011


Well, I survived my first hurricane. Check out the video.

YouTube Video

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Quote of the Day

From Stanley Hauerwas:
on the importance of story over moral principles
"Contrary to the assumption of many philosophers, moral principles do not serve as the 'essence' of stories, as if they might be abstracted from the story and still convey the same meaning. Rather, our principles are but shorthand reminders necessary for moral education and explanation; their moral significance is contained in stories. Though principles (or policy statements) such as 'I have decided to live an agapeistic life' appear to be story-neutral, they are nothing of the sort.  For our principles 'are intelligible at all only if their implicit 'stories' are explicated.  The need for stories then lies precisely in the fact that policy statements are about intentions to act in certain ways, and action is inconceivable apart from stories.'"
Stanley Hauerwas, The Hauerwas Reader, John Berkman and Michael Cartwright, eds, Durham: Duke University Press, 2001, 166. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Full Time Baby!

Today is my first day teaching as a full time professor.  I have been teaching at the college level now for four years, first as a Graduate student, then as an adjunct.  But today, I begin as Assistant Professor of Religion and Philosophy at Chowan University. 

I cannot express how excited this makes me.  This Summer has been brutal.  Since the job offer came in late April, my life has been like a tornado.  Fixing up a house, selling a house, buying a house, moving cross country, enduring the Texas Summer heat, getting settled in a new town, all of this while not doing what I love: teaching. 

Well, the day is finally here.  Hurrah!

Buried in Books

This picture is of my dining room and the piles of books that Brooke and I were unpacking. 

Keep in mind, this is only a small portion of our collected books. My academic books, more than half of our collection, were already moved up to my office (in which I have several similar stacks of unshelved books as I write this). These stacks also do not include the nine boxes of books that we have decided to put away for the time being, not being worthy of any sort of display or availability.

So, how many books are too many?  A question Brooke and I kept asking ourselves as we were unpacking, stacking, sorting, and shelving our large collection. I used to think, with regard to books, the more the merrier.  But things have changed.  First of all, moving these books across country (from Texas to North Carolina) will make anyone think twice.  First you have to pack the books, then you have to load the heavy boxes, then unload the heavy boxes.  Finally, you have to unpack, sort, and find room to shelve the books.  As Brooke and I sorted the books on Sunday, we cringed several times.  We love most of our books, but then there are those that we look at and say, "What was I thinking when I bought that book?"  Or, "Who gave us that?"

The second thing that has changed is the advent of the Kindle (or similar device) and a good selection of eBooks.  Brooke and I have almost completely switched to eBooks for our everyday reading.  From now on, if the book is available as an eBook, we will buy it as such.  We both love to read the eBooks on our iPads.  The convenience is great, the format is great, being able to carry entire libraries in one device is great.  I have a feeling our physical book library will not get any larger, in fact, I hope it will shrink.  Here's to the digital library.