Hey, my alma-mater got a mention today in Gregg Easterbrook’s Tuesday Morning Quarterback column, under his “Obscure College Score” item:
Double Bonus Obscure College Score: Wisconsin-Whitewater 34, Wartburg 17 (Division III playoffs). [Yay Wartburg! -Ed.] Located in Waverly, Iowa, Wartburg offers a course about the TV series “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” The course description reports, “Buffy the Vampire Slayer has become a focus of cultural and feminist studies … showings of the series are a course requirement.” (Go here, then look under the Department of Inquiry Studies for course 101 04.)
I’m not sure if he’s sneering at Wartburg there or not, but lots of colleges offer courses devoted to various teevee programs, and Buffy is generally fairly highly regarded, so I’m not sure what Easterbrook’s point here is. He doesn’t really clarify; he just tosses this out there. Maybe he’s arguing that coursework on Buffy is why Wartburg isn’t the most famous of schools? That seems odd, too…there are thousands of colleges in the United States, how can they all be well-noted?
Easterbrook also cuts out a bit of the course description, where those ellipses are. Here’s what’s missing:
This section will use the series [1997-2003] to discuss issues such as coming of age, education feminism, morality, destiny, Good vs. Evil, sexuality, friendship, leadership, language and other topics. Students are expected to spend some time familiarizing themselves with the series outside of class and practice becoming critical viewers.
Not sure I see anything wrong with this, then. Plus, when you look at the entire offering of the “Department of Inquiry Studies”, a whole slew of courses turns up. There was no such department when I was there (1989-1993), so this is a fairly new thing, I suppose. It looks interdisciplinary in nature, though.
Anyway, go Knights! And boo, the Wisconsin-Whitewater…uh…Whatevers!