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Posts by: Christopher Parr

Shocks, Awe, and Friendship Cherie Harder Friday, October 11, 2013   Recently, a friend asked me to accompany her as she received electric shocks while participating in a study to better understand friendship and attachment. (For real.) We drove to the University of Virginia, where electrodes were strapped to her ankles and she was pushed
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A Hole in the ``Heart of the Matter`` Cherie Harder Tuesday, July 16, 2013   Last week, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS) released a compelling report affirming the necessity and centrality of the humanities and liberal arts in developing citizens and perpetuating democratic self-government. Entitled "The Heart of the Matter," the report
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Revolutionary Readers Cherie Harder Monday, June 17, 2013   “You don’t have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them.” -- Ray Bradbury It has long been an assumption that the act of reading is not only foundational but formational: that what and how we read helps determine how
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In Memoriam: Dallas Willard Cherie Harder Thursday, May 16, 2013   Last week, Trinity Forum Senior Fellow Dallas Willard died, just a couple of days after publicly confirming a stage 4 cancer diagnosis. He was 77, and leaves behind his wife of many years, Jane, two children, a grandchild, and legions of friends, students, colleagues,
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Disrespect and Distortion Cherie Harder Monday, March 18, 2013   Nastiness, new research shows, corrodes not only relationships, but also reading comprehension. A recent study published in the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication and reported in the New York Times sought to study what was termed “the nasty effect” – the impact of insulting comments about an article on readers’
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Lent, Attention, and Invisible Gorillas Cherie Harder Wednesday, February 13, 2013 Ash Wednesday   New evidence confirms that it is really quite common to entirely miss the elephant (or gorilla) in the room. In attempting to better understand the nature of focus and attention, a group of researchers showed test subjects a video of a
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Christmas and Connecticut Cherie Harder December 2012   If the Christmas season typically consists of a frantic race to buy presents, hit sales, and max out one’s credit card, the events of last week have exposed, if only for a time, not only the relative folly of materialism in practice, but also the bankruptcy of
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Beware of Wolves and Termites Cherie Harder September 2012   Earlier this week marked the 11th anniversary of 9-11. Most of us who lived through the 9-11 attacks in New York or Washington can vividly remember not only the horror, but the confusion and bewilderment, of the morning hours of that day. The idea of
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Why Read Stories? Cherie Harder Friday, June 22, 2012 “I don’t waste time reading make-believe.”So said a friend, in response to being asked to name his favorite novel. It’s a widespread attitude – that literature is somehow fundamentally un-serious, that reading non-fiction is more practical, commendable, and responsible; that stories themselves are somehow the realm
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Why Read Stories? Cherie Harder Friday, May 11, 2012   This Sunday is the last that I and thousands of other parishioners will worship at the Sanctuary of The Falls Church in Virginia. Earlier this year, a judge ruled that despite the fact that The Falls Church is older than the Episcopal diocese, and that
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