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Felicidades, Spring Semester News y Mas----

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First-- Felicidades to our Ethnic Studies Graduate T.A., Leslie Martinez.  She received a Graduate Studies Honorable Mention this past week for the excellent work in Ethnic Studies she does. Leslie has been working with us and we've been so pleased to have her contributions to the Ethnic Studies curriculum and especially to the students who benefit for her expertise.  Gracias Leslie!

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Leslie Martinez y Amelia M.L. Montes at Graduate Studies Award Reception

Second:  I am teaching a fabulous group of graduate and undergraduate students in my American Novels class.  We are already deep into discussions of Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury, Dreiser's An American Tragedy, and Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God.  In teaching, two theorists of critical pedagogy I follow are educators bell hooks and Paulo Freire who write:

"Engaged pedagogy does not seek simply to empower students.  Any classroom that employs a holistic model of learning will also be a place where teachers grow, and are empowered by the process."  --bell hooks

"Education either functions as an instrument which is used to facilitate integration of the younger generation into the logic of the present system and bring about conformity or it becomes the practice of freedom, the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world." 
--Paulo Freire

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Book list for American Novels class

I look forward to a full and rich semester of discussion!  And in addition to these novels (picture above) students will also be presenting on over 20 other American novels.  Much to consider for this semester!

Third:  A temperate Nebraska January gave way to a February that presented us with the first significant snowstorm of the season--gifting us with a foot of snow.  I took the picture below early as the snow was falling an inch an hour (about 6:30a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 4).

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And then later in the day-- the job of digging out:

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And now today (Sunday, Feb. 5) --we have brilliant sun and the sound of melting snow . . .

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I am wishing all of you an excellent second week in February---
More soon . . . 

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