Several of these blog entries are reflections of various aspects of the holocaust-studies tour. These essays are designed to provide the reader with specific information about various memorials and locations as well as a personal reflection of meaning associated with a location or feature of a memorial. Some blog entries will not be animated by the holocaust-studies tour.

Additionally, I recently completed a writing project overhauling a behavior and social sciences statistics textbook. Some selected sidebar essays that may be of interest to a more general audience have been extracted and placed in this section of the website.

Germany/Poland ’23, Day 4

Wittenberg, the Reformation, and a bit of Rail Confusion Day 4 was a break from the Holocaust and National Socialism, although there were contextual connections that were made – namely, a brief look at a pre-enlightenment, pre-biological expression of antisemitism. Challenges on the rails on the way home did not damper what was a wonderful day spent in the city of reformation. The Asisi Panorama, City Church, and Castle Church were the most significant locations visited. Below are a few pics. Tomorrow we venture just north of the city to the concentration camp most proximal to Berlin – Sachsenhausen.

Read More »

Germany/Poland ’23, Day 3

Of Beginnings and Endings Today was our hardest day thus far. Not as many steps taken nor as many locations visited, but the content was tremendously heavy. Before places like Auschwitz were even imagined, Brandenburg was. It was the location where what had previously only been imagined was first put into practice – the medicalized and state-sanctioned killing of other people. The critical first step taken at this facility and the practical, methodological, and contextual lessons that were learned by the perpetrators here in Brandenburg would form the procedural foundation for the millions of deaths that would follow. Our day

Read More »

Germany/Poland ’23, Day 2

Whole Lotta Walkin’ and Talkin’ Goin’ On Our first full day as a team in Berlin brought with it renewed strength, renewed hope for the return of some lost luggage, and over 20,000 steps of exploration. Among the places visited include Checkpoint Charlie, The Topography of Terror Museum, Potsdamer Platz, the Aktion T-4 Memorial, Hitler’s Bunker, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the Soviet War Memorial, and the Reichstag. In addition to taking in these sights, wonderful discussions are being had about the nature of memorials, the absorbing power of a desired narrative, the concept of self-deception, the

Read More »

Germany/Poland ’23, Day 1

Arrivals and First Things It took most of the day, but we got everyone here safe and sound (minus one piece of luggage, sadly). Despite jet-lag, dispersed landing times, and rail construction complicating our movements, we were able to find about 4 hours in the evening to do some exploring downtown. Among other sites, we checked out Alexanderplatz, Rosenstrasse Protest Memorial, Hackescher Markt, Museum Island, Humboldt University, Bebelplatz, and the Brandenburg Gate. Below are some pics. Everyone is exhausted and needing rest. Tomorrow we will further explore by local rail and foot the sites of Berlin.

Read More »

Germany/Poland ’23, Day minus 1

(The students arrive tomorrow.) Day minus 1 allowed me to gain virtually all of the rail tickets we need (took nearly 2 hours, whew!), find our hotel for this year (conveniently located near Alexanderplatz), and do a little exploring on my own. What I set out to find was the Berlin Wall Park and Memorial which is located in the north-central part of the city. This particular venue features several memorials, large stretches of the outer wall peppered across the park’s western edge (a bit of the inner wall is there as well), and many markings on the ground where

Read More »

Book Review: Of Popes and Unicorns

By David Hutchings & James Ungureanu; Oxford University Press, 2022 (263 pages) Accessibility rating 4 (out of 5) Recommendation rating 5 (out of 5) Of Popes and Unicorns, a 2022 offering written by science educator David Hutchings and Humanities Professor James Ungureanu, takes the reader on a brief yet impressively comprehensive tour of the history of the so-called “conflict thesis,” the widely accepted claim that there exists a long-standing and fundamental antagonism between religious thought, notably Christian thought, and the goals and efforts of modern science. In the book, the authors tackle two issues. The first is a careful exploration

Read More »