Are Glennon Doyle Melton and Elizabeth Gilbert Hurting the Memoir Genre?

About a year ago, a friend of mine that I deeply trust recommended I read Glennon Doyle Melton’s memoir, Carry On, Warrior. As I read, it became clear that Melton has a good voice on the page, a refreshing sense of humor, and a tender eye for story. I was especially drawn to the passage that seemingly led to the book’s title. These are my words, not hers, but Melton seemed to be suggesting that in this life we are compelled to live as warriors while at the same time needing to let go of our various forms of artificial armor. I think Melton’s right: life is fuller at that paradox. It was no surprise to me that her work had caught on with a significant audience.

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Four Tips for Teaching Undergraduates

Let’s face it: professors compete with the likes of Greek life, parties, college football, and intramural sports for their students’ attention. Many students are going to chose other options over studying more often than not. So how can teachers maximize the time they have with students and maybe even convince students that additional time outside the classroom is worth the effort? In my teaching, I’ve made plenty of mistakes, but here are a few ways I’ve had some success engaging students:

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The Self-Esteem Generation

A few years ago, I taught a couple sections of a college composition course and was surprised to see that included on my list of texts was Jean Twenge’s book, Generation Me: Why Today’s Young Americans are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled–and More Miserable than Ever Before by Jean Twenge. We used it to engage in critical reading and also as a text to which we could apply various rhetorical concepts. Read More