Archives for October 2012

Barry Mills: An Experiment


There will be more activity on campus this January, as the College hosts a new program aimed at giving students a leg up in an increasingly competitive job market.

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Finding the Small, Very Small, Slice of Good in Psychopathy (The Chronicle of Higher Education)

Perhaps it’s timely to point out on Halloween that, scarily, a number of signs seem to indicate that our society is becoming more psychopathic, according to The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Reading books, which can fine-tune our alertness to the inner lives of others, has become less popular; college students self-report as 40% less empathic than they did 20 to 30 years ago; and corporate crime is up. “But if society really is becoming more psychopathic, it’s not all doom and gloom. In the right context, certain psychopathic characteristics can actually be very constructive,” the Chronicle writer finds. Mental toughness, fearlessness and heightened awareness all can be helpful — that is, in the right context and doses.

Slideshow: Bowdoin Sails at Erwin Schell Trophy Regatta

Bowdoin’s sailing team finished 10th out of 18 at the Erwin Schell Trophy, the fall conference co-ed championship regatta, hosted last weekend by Brown University at the Edgewood Yacht Club. All photos © 2012 Rob Migliaccio.


Monopoly May Have Been Invented as Paean to Socialism (Harper’s)

The Atlantic City properties made famous by Monopoly and their current prices in an infographic compiled by Movoto Real Estate.Although Hasbro’s official history of Monopoly has it that the board game was invented by an unemployed steam-radiator repairman and part-time dog walker in Philadelphia named Charles Darrow, the real history is quite different.

Three decades before Darrow’s patent, an actress in Maryland named Lizzie Magie create a “proto-Monopoly” game as a tool for teaching the philosophy of Henry George, a 19th-century writer who argues in his book, Progress and Poverty (1879), that no single person could “own” land.

“[Magie’s game’s] chief entertainment was the same as in Monopoly: competitors were to be saddled with debt and ultimately reduced to financial ruin, and only one person, the supermonopolist, would stand tall in the end. The players could, however, vote to do something not officially allowed in Monopoly: cooperate. Under this alternative rule set, they would pay land rent not to a property’s title holder but into a common pot—the rent effectively socialized so that, as Magie later wrote, ‘Prosperity is achieved,'” according to Harper’s.