[Milton-L] (no subject)

robertsimms at mchsi.com robertsimms at mchsi.com
Tue Apr 17 19:36:20 EDT 2007


Dear List-members,

My ability to get news about Va is a little impaired by my lack of cable (and lack of constitution to stay 
up late for Fox news) here at Otago so if I am off or behind excuse me.   I read this morning that the 
suspect was identified as an English major who wrote a few “disturbing” plays.  I read also that these 
plays were so graphic that they were handed over to administrators. I’m wondering what sort of policy 
this represents and what long term implications this event might have for such policies. On the one 
hand, it seems horribly absurd to profile the writings of students no matter how graphic or disturbed, 
but on the other hand, in light of this…is it?  As a grad student I’m not all that familiar with the inner-
workings of departments -- too busy dissertating and pre-professionalising. My only experience with 
this has been students who raised or suggested suicide when I was a GTA in the US. One of my 
students, sadly, was successful in his attempt but had indicated nothing in his writing that semester. 
Given proximity to students, some of whom have urgent psychological issues, I find it quite a pickle 
that we are not usually the best persons qualified to be on that front line – and yet there we are. 

perge modo,

Robert


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