Author Archives: Peter Levine

the character of poets and of people generally

In Coming of Age as a Poet (Harvard, 2003), Helen Vendler interprets the earliest mature verse of four major poets: Milton, Keats, Eliot, and Plath. She argues that great poets reach maturity when they develop consistent diction and formal styles; … Continue reading

Posted in philosophy | Leave a comment

Not Quite Adults

Richard Settersten and Barbara E. Ray have published Not Quite Adults: Why 20-Somethings Are Choosing a Slower Path to Adulthood and Why It’s Good for Everyone (Bantam 2010). Their book is a product of the MacArthur Research Network on Transitions … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

college students expect service, study abroad, and extracurricular clubs but report stress and low emotional health

Using data from the College Freshman Survey of the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI), John H. Pryor reports that incoming college freshmen are increasingly likely to expect that they will participate directly in extracurricular activities, community service, and foreign study–all … Continue reading

Posted in academia | Leave a comment

the Campaign for Stronger Democracy

The Campaign for Stronger Democracy pulls together activists for campaign and election reform, deliberative democracy, transparency, collaborative governance, civic education, national and community service, and community organizing. It is an unprecedented coalition, the need for which I tried to demonstrate … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

the Eight Americas

Christopher Murray and six colleagues have published an article entitled “Eight Americas: Investigating Mortality Disparities across Races, Counties, and Race-Counties in the United States.” They divide the entire US population into the following categories: 1. Asian: Asians living in counties … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

what would Jane Addams say?

This is the tiny rocking chair in which Jane Addams learned to read as a little girl, encouraged by her father, John (“double-D”) Addams, who served in the Illinois State Legislature with Abraham Lincoln. Zoom out to Jane Addams’ bedroom, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

building web communities for policy discussion

(Chicago, IL) I am here to visit the impressive Institute for Policy and Civic Engagement at the University of Illinois at Chicago. (It is located right near my favorite shrine to American democracy, Jane Addams’ own Hull House.) Among its … Continue reading

Posted in Internet and public issues | Leave a comment

what is the role of public education in youth civic engagement?

(Posted at Logan en route to Chicago) Here I am addressing the question of whether parents or schools have the right to influence kids politically–a classic issue in political theory. I suggest that empirical research is relevant as well: Bookmark … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

a constitutional amendment for campaign finance reform

After the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v Federal Election Commission, which gave corporations unlimited rights to spend money to influence elections, I am leaning in favor of a constitutional amendment to permit the regulation of campaign finances. The … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Elizabeth Bishop, At the Fishhouses

The Poetry Foundation provides the text of Bishop’s masterpiece “At the Fishhouses” (1948) along with a recording of the author reading it (not necessarily as well as it could be read). She introduces the color silver early and returns to … Continue reading

Posted in fine arts, notes on poems | Leave a comment