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Christine Kraemer
Works at Bay State Learning Center
Attended Boston University
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Christine Kraemer

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Sort of a counter-argument to the previous essay I posted. I also agree a lot with this one (basic premise: it's not the student-instructor relationship that's the problem, it's the institution-instructor relationship that has made instructors feel so vulnerable -- because so many are working unstable jobs without benefits at a poverty level). It's definitely the case that university culture has been vastly altered in the past 40 years by the idea that universities should be run like businesses. I agree that the screwed-up relationship between instructors and universities warps the relationship between instructors and students in turn. But I don't think this writer gives any attention to the fact that today's students think of themselves as customers to be served, and that attitude impedes the quality of their education. When I was teaching college even ten years ago, a significant percentage of my class expected As and treated any failure to get As as my not doing my job. If students are given the ability to opt out of any class material at any time due to its being offensive or potentially triggering (and of course, how can they then be tested on that material?), that's just another way that education is being tailored to what students think is good as opposed to what people who have spent their lives thinking and writing about the subjects think is good. I know the idea of education as a process of personal and social formation of a citizen is out of style, but every new attack on it disturbs me. 
The real issue behind the explosive debate over political correctness on campus.
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Christine Kraemer

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Coddling is a good word for this trend. What disturbs me is how the focus on micro aggressions and trigger warnings actually takes attention and energy from learning about and working to change life and death social problems.

College students are increasingly demanding protection from words and ideas they don’t like. Here’s why that’s disastrous for education.
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What I think is weird is characterizing a "trigger warning" as "protection from words and ideas they don't like." IME that's not what it's supposed to be. A trigger warning should be a warning, basically to prepare one's self for this content, so it will not be a surprise, as encountering it unexpectedly is usually more upsetting than being prepared.

If people are using "trigger warnings" as a way to avoid encountering ideas they do not like, then there should be a conversation about trigger warnings, what they are, and why they are. I disagree that PTSD should be something disclosed to the disability office in order to get a trigger warning as "accommodation." That idea really, really creeps me out. I don't want to tell the disability office about my PTSD or the particulars of how I got it. I've already found that professors like to pry into my personal life and history and it makes me very unhappy.
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Christine Kraemer

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[BOSTON] Bay State Learning Center is hosting a panel discussion on educational alternatives for teens, focusing on resources in the Boston area. The panel includes a college admissions officer and Peter Grey, author of FREE TO LEARN, as well as representatives of Massachusetts alternative learning centers. Join us Thursday, August 20 at 7:00pm! 
Have a child? Love a child? Then explore whether the local one-size-fits-few institutional school is the best place for your unique child to spend his formative years. You may possibly save a child from years of misery by finding an education alternative that better aligns with her nature and her personality. A panel of experts, with a breadth of expertise of alternative education options, will overview the most recent research on how children re...
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Christine Kraemer

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Good progress on this issue. Not as strong as a court finding, but still very good news. 
After a nationally debated case, Child Protective Services will get involved only if children are harmed.
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Hooray!
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Christine Kraemer

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Good short piece for that relative or friend who doesn't understand privilege, but who hasn't yet been browbeaten so much about it that s/he's stopped listening. Comics are much, much better than call outs.
A short story about privilege. By Toby Morris.
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Christine Kraemer

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PAGAN COMMUNITY STATEMENT ON THE ENVIRONMENT: SIGN BY JUNE 21 FOR MAXIMUM IMPACT

In this time of accelerating environmental change, many Pagans feel a sense of urgency to help transform humanity’s relationship with the Earth. This sense of urgency is what drew together a large and diverse group of diverse Pagans, including Pagan writers, artists, and academics, to draft “A Pagan Community Statement on the Environment.” The drafting process took 6 months, at the end of which the statement was posted for a period public comment, followed by another round of revisions. On Earth Day 2015, the final version of the statement published at ecopagan.com and made available for signatures. Over the past three weeks, almost 4,000 signatures have been collected, from all over the world, from Pagans of every kind.

The drafters of the statement hope to collect 10,000 signatures by summer solstice (June 21).  This will coincide with the anticipated publication of Pope Francis’ environmental encyclical.  The Pope’s statement is expected to be historical, and it is already drawing a lot of media attention. A previous environmental encyclical by Pope Benedict explicitly contrasted Catholic earth stewardship with “neo-paganism”. Another, more recent, statement by Pope Francis suggests he may have a similar perspective on Paganism.  Regardless of whether Pope Francis explicitly mentions Paganism this summer, the Catholic statement will likely generate talk in the press about Paganism, and this is an ideal opportunity for us to share a Pagan vision of ecological sustainability with the world.

Please visit ecopagan.com to read the statement and consider signing the statement and adding your voice to those already raised in defense of all life on Earth.

Please also considering sharing this message with the link to www.ecopagan.com with at least 5 Pagan friends.
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Christine Kraemer

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[BOS] If you, like my family, get your health insurance through the MA Health Connector, you may want to know that if they (for example) cash your check, fail to credit your account, cancel your insurance, and fail to reactivate it even after you've sent proof of payment and spent hours on the phone, CALL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE. This is the second time Rep. Capuano's office has interceded with MassHealth / the Health Connector on behalf of my family. Very very happy to have a rep who is so responsive to constituents.
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I'm sorry this happened and glad that you got help in sorting it out!
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Christine Kraemer

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CFP for awesome "Greening of Religion" conference this April in South Carolina! *****

Laurie Zoloth, bioethicist and president of the American Academy of Religion, has called climate change the greatest moral issue of our time.  Increasingly, voices from a variety of religious and spiritual traditions are bringing the link between religion and climate change to national and international notice, from the Green Seminary Movement, to the recent Papal encyclical, to conferences ranging from the purely academic to those like the World Parliament of Religions, and to the growing emphasis on environmental justice.
 
Our April 1-3 conference welcomes proposals that go beyond acknowledging climate change as a moral challenge to explore if and how religious and spiritual traditions and their practitioners engage with this challenge, its effect on their behavior and thinking, and if theological reflections have been modified in any way to adjust to the climate changes that confront us.
 
We are looking for proposals from a broad understanding of religion, including the Abrahamic, the Dharmic, the contemporary Pagan and the Earth-based, as well as from diverse methodologies: theoretical and practical, qualitative and quantitative, normative and descriptive. Abstracts should be limited to 600 words and are due by September 30, 2015.
 
Don't miss this opportunity to present at conference with renowned scholar Bron Taylor, author of Dark Green Religion: Nature Spirituality and the Planetary Future, and Avatar and Nature Spirituality, as well as numerous publications documenting his ethnographic work with Earth First! and the Earth Liberation Front.
 
Bron Taylor, Ph.D., keynote speaker for The Greening of Religions: Hope In the Eye of the Storm, is Professor of Religion and Nature at the University of Florida, and has been an Affiliated Scholar with the Center for Environment and Development at the University of Oslo. Working primarily in the areas of religion and ecology, environmental ethics and environmental philosophy Taylor is also a prominent historian and ethnographer of environmentalism, including radical environmentalist movements, surfing culture and nature-based spiritualities.

Taylor is Editor-in-Chief of the Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature. He founded the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, serving as its President from 2006-2009, and founded the Society's Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, serving as editor since 2007. From Taylor's web site:
 
"Explore the emotional and spiritual connections people have (and do not have) with nature. Consider the ethical and political dimensions of grassroots environmental movements, including Earth First! and the Earth Liberation Front. Discover what surfing (oceanic not internet) might have to do with spirituality and environmentalism. Analyze how environments shape human perceptions and how human perceptions shape environmental and social systems. Consider whether a new post-Darwinian nature spirituality is emerging that will decisively shape the future of religion and the earth."
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I am teaching a 4-week, online class on Pagan Consent Culture at Cherry Hill Seminary this September. Consent culture begins with the idea of sovereignty, with recognizing our right to control our bodies and selves in all areas of life. This class will define consent culture in a Pagan context, examine Pagan theological resources for building consent culture, explore strategies for normalizing seeking consent to touch, give recommendations for safeguarding policies at events, and more.
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Christine Kraemer

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New book: everything you know about the Kitty Genovese murder is probably wrong. As it turns out, Genovese was gay, as was one of the only two eyewitnesses to her death. How might this fact have affected witnesses' willingness to call the police and police responsiveness?
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Found while looking for videos for Urp's music education. Totally amazing. 
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Neat, thanks.
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One of my pieces is part of a Patheos series on rites of passage this month! And I'm in good company -- +Heather Greene has one too. 
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Thanks, Sierra! And thanks for your writing on these issues -- I'm pretty sure I first heard about Free Range Kids from you, years ago.
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Have her in circles
797 people
Rasa Liberus's profile photo
Abderrahman Enguagcha's profile photo
Hicham Amir's profile photo
Heather Freeman's profile photo
Henry Buchy's profile photo
Abdul Ahad's profile photo
Áine Órga's profile photo
Asher J. Klassen's profile photo
Allen Marshall's profile photo
Work
Occupation
Religious Studies Scholar (specialties: Pagan Studies, body theology, religion and comics)
Employment
  • Bay State Learning Center
    President, Board of Trustees, 2014 - present
  • Cherry Hill Seminary
    Instructor, Theology and Religious History, 2009 - present
  • Patheos.com
    Managing Editor, Pagan Channel, 2012 - 2015
  • Cherry Hill Seminary
    Department Chair, Theology and Religious History, 2010 - 2012
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Female
Other names
Christine Hoff Kraemer
Story
Tagline
Writer, Editor, Religious Studies Scholar
Education
  • Boston University
    Religious and Theological Studies, 2002 - 2007
  • University of Texas at Austin
    Plan II / English, 1996 - 2000
  • Lauterstein-Conway School of Massage
    Integrative Massage, 2007 - 2008
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