01:090:111 The theme of Fall 2014 Colloquium will focus on the idea of "starting over."
Launching from James Howard Kunstler's World Made by Hand, the fall 2014 Honors Colloquium draws upon issues and questions confronting the characters in the novel's post-apocalyptic scenario: what does it mean for individuals--and an entire society--to be suddenly "starting over." The Colloquium will explore questions of how priorities are set and choices made in a drastically new world. The idea of "starting over" suggests the challenges that come with change, dealing with loss and new possibilities, and the ways that values, expectations, and plans are shaped and re-shaped. Kunstler's story raises many critical questions: what is a community, and when does one belong? Who is included or excluded? What is gained or lost by encounters with a new world? What skills and knowledge are valuable, and which seem to lose their use and purpose? Beyond this, one can also reflect not only on changed circumstances but on the larger question of what would be an ideal communit? Who should be in charge? Do ends justify means in pursuing plans for the future? Students should think about how their own journeys through life--even coming to the university--require reflection, change, and "starting over."