A response to Stephanie Harper’s, “College Is a Torture Chamber”
I'm gathering evidence that students think lectures are torture.
I'm going to ask them directly if they feel that way.
I'm going to tell them the role narrative plays in my own life.
I'm going to ask them about Stephanie's poem.
I'm going to ask hard questions.
I'm going to talk about boredom.
I'm going to ask them how they feel about college, about "having" to take courses I teach.
About what "fluff" is.
About what "bullshit" is.
About what "authority" is.
About why they feel pressure and anxiety.
About what damages their mental health.
What IS mental health?
What is "butchering passion"?
What is "passion"?
What is it to be seen as "less valuable"?
How does a student determine that an answer "only requires one paragraph," and why do instructors require more?
What is the "real world," and does college prepare you for it, or does it not?
Is the social world a part of the "real world," or is the social world somehow "fake"?
What do you want to do with your life, really?
How is it that college is "unrelated" to that?
If you desire to write, what exactly is it that you desire to write, and what inhibits you from doing that now?
Do your teachers encourage you to keep your mouth shut?
Do you know in advance everything that you will not give a fuck about, before you learn that those things exist?
When and how did you acquire this ability?
How did you decide what is important?
When did you make those decisions?
How did you make them?
What is your situation?
Where do you stand?
What about it makes college torture?
At what rate are you dying?