Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Haley Reading Group: reflections


[The Best American Science and Nature Writing (2015)]

Over the last few months, we read and commented on:
• Sheri Fink’s “Life, death, and grim routine fill the day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic
• Eli Kintisch's “Into the Maelstrom
• Sam Kean’s “Phineas Gage, Neuroscience’s Most Famous Patient
• Jourdan Imani Keith’s “At Risk" & “Desegregating Wilderness
• Dennis Overbye’s “A Pioneer as Elusive as His Particle
• Michael Specter’s “Partial Recall
What article most challenged your thinking? That is, which article, among those we read, prompted you to most re-think preconceived ideas or stretch your mind in new ways? How so?

43 comments:

Kiana S said...

I would say that the article that most challenged my thinking was "At Risk". It was a powerful article that was eye-opening to me as a reader. Society is aware of the stigma associated with at-risk youth and is also aware of the impact the word endangered is to a species. People typically don't associate the two together to see the true similarities of the at-risk youth and endangered species, but Keith did. Keith showed that the importance of taking care and nurturing endangered species is the same approach we should take for at-risk youth as a society as a whole.

Mackenzie Cohoon said...

Michael Specter's "Partial Recall" challenged my thinking the most because I have always relied on my memory without question. The article made me realize that our memory isn't exactly one hundred percent accurate all of the time, so we shouldn't exactly dwell on the past as we do. Instead we can shape our memories to reflect who we are now rather than letting the past define us.

Alishiana Ivy said...

Out of all the article that I read this semester, the one that challenged my thinking the most was “into the maelstrom” by Eli Kintischs. This article challenged my thinking the most because it was talking about things that I have never heard about in my science classes. One thing that she stated was that nature caused or is causing global warming. This was a different perspective because most people were taught that humans were to blame for Global Warming and other negative changes in our world.

Kalonji Rumph said...

The article that I found most challenging was Dennis Overbye’s, “A Pioneer as Elusive as His Particle”. The article used a lot of scientific jargon and talked concepts and theories that even leading physicist don't comprehend in their entirety. I myself am not anywhere close to being an expert on quantum physics, so my biggest challenge was trying to get at least a basic understanding as to what was being talked about before I can write a valid/substantial post.

Christine Sheriff said...

This semester the piece that challenged my thinking most was Sheri Fink’s, “Life, death, and grim routine fill the day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic." This article showcased how desperate times really do call for desperate measures. A really sad, eye opening moment was when Fink spoke of a man in the final stages of his illness that curled up against a 50-year-old woman who had died. He was nearing death and all he truly wanted was comfort, not even concerned about the fact that he was being comforted by a corpse. This stuck with me.

Ivyanne B said...

I think that the article that made me think a little more was the article "Life, Death, and grim routine fill the day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic". This article really made me think about how privileged we are in America and how we take things for granted. After reading about people losing there lives and dealing with a disease so harsh like Ebola it showed me that there are terrible things happening and that everybody should come together and help everyone out. It showed that America has things to help prevent disease and that we can afford doctors and standard medicine when others can't.
-Ivyanne B.

Joke Adanri said...

I think that "Life, Death, and Grim Routine Fill the Day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic" challenged my thinking the most because its message was something that I understood clearly. It is hard to think about how difficult it is to get medical treatment in other parts of the world and how little the western world is doing to help. I don't think I've ever thought about how difficult it must be for doctors in western Africa because they are so susceptible to this disease but still do everything they can to help, I found that really inspiring.

Alliyah M. said...

The article that challenged my thinking was Jourdan Imani Keith’s "At risk". This article really showed me how flawed society's priorities and attitudes are towards those who struggle in life. In the article, Keith clearly described how society treats endangered species with care and offer protection when they're at-risk, but when it comes to the at-risk youth in the US, we typically avoid them or don't make many attempts to help them. I think Keith's description of this problem helped me realize that we need to help those who have had many struggles in life as much as we help endangered species, because we could also change their lives and help them achieve success.

Raillane Kamdem said...

Michael Specters “Partial Recall” challenged my thinking the most because before I wouldn’t have thought of memory altercation as a good thing whatsoever. When the article came about with the concept that only the fear factor part of the memories would change, it altered my view as to what I deemed acceptable or not when it comes to altering something so delicate. I for now see no qualms with it, which is something I could not say before.

Desmond Crumer said...

"Partial Recall" by Micheal Specter's was one of the few articles I have read this semester that made me think even after I had written my response to the prompt, and I am still thinking about it now. Memories are what brings the human component to our otherwise insignificant existence. They make us who we are, and they are made of both positive and negative influences. It is humbling to think of how different we could be from our current state of consciousness if one memory was suddenly gone.

Brianna Pickens said...

While Sheri Fink’s “Life, Death and Grim routine Fill the Day at Liberian Ebola Clinic” stood out to me a lot due to the gruesome images she discusses from the herrendous disease. The story of the man hugging a dead corpse for comfort will always remain in my mind. But, my favorite article was our most recent one, “Partial Recall” by Micheal Specter. I think the human brain is so interesting. I love psychology and the effect of different diseases on the process of the brain, so I found the idea of using a pill to treat memory loss very fascinating. I also enjoyed reading a lot of the comments. It’s interestimg to see what people perceive as ethical, I believe that at the end of the day it is up to the patient. If they know the limits of the drug and all of the possible side effects then it is up to them to decide. Whether their friends and family think the drug is ethical or not.

Tyla Lucas said...

Sam Kean’s “Phineas Gage, Neuroscience’s Most Famous Patient” challenged my way of thinking the most. I learned about Gage in class and took everything as fact, never taking the time to guess how much we actually knew about Gage. It made me reevaluate how much we really know to be fact about history. Yes there was a man that survived having a four foot metal rod go through his head, but other than that what do we know? Everything is based off other people’s recollections of him and those may not be accurate. This article made me realize to take everything I learn with a grain of salt.

Lena Searcy said...

Partial Recall was the most thought provoking article to me. This article had the most moral ambiguity and made me think about how our emotions and memories make us human and shape who we are, but also about how difficult it can be to cope with traumatic memories.

Daeja Daniels said...

Daeja Daniels

Of all the articles read this semester the one that stuck with me the most was Partial Recall. The idea of messing with another persons memory is intriguing but also scary. Being someone who is very interested in science and technology if something like this were to be created I would want to see all the components of it. Also, just the idea of messing with someone's memory isn't something that I had ever thought of in general.

Diana Lienemann said...

I believe Keith's article "At Risk" made me think the most. It put into perspective just how different everyone is. Time and time again it is said that everyone has their own issues, they're just different issues. This article emphasized that every child is at risk, they just have different risks. I believe that follows into adulthood, too. The article states that "at-risk" is a completely different term for people than it is for animals. For animals it is a protector, for children it is a judgement. This article pointed out how flawed society is, they judge people by where they come from and what color their skin is. Society doesn't care about a child from the ghetto when they're in college or working their way up, they only care once the adult is successful and gets out of the ghetto, then they like to look at where they came from and be proud they got out of there. It isn't right. Every child has potential, all they need is an opportunity.

Chidera Onyeizeh said...

Sheri Fink’s, “Life, death, and grim routine fill the day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic." Was the most challenging reading that made me think about things that really didn’t cross my mind. For example it lead me to realize that the most important thing people seek in life is comfort, love. Being near death will show that humans inherently need comfort, no matter how much people want to be left alone.

Chidera Onyeizeh

Kamela Cross said...

The most challenging articles for me were "At Risk" and "Desegregating Wilderness". They made me reevaluate how much we as humans connect with the nature around us. Before reading the articles I hadn't thought much on how affected nature can seem. I had thought that the social and economical problems we face couldn't relate to those in the wild. I was shocked and intrigued to learn we were so similar. It also allowed me to look at our society and see how underdeveloped we still are as a species. We allow for our judgments to hold more meaning than a person's life does. After reading these articles I began to look more into our society and will continue to hope for change as well as fight for it.

Rodney Clark said...

During this semester we read many articles. I feel that the article that impacted me the most and stuck with me is "At risk", written by Jourdan Keith, because it is all about perception. People all think of different things when they hear of certain scenarios. One may think a certain group of kids is at risk and someone else may think another is, but in different ways. That article is all about how people see each other and that's something everyone can see.

-Rodney Clark

Breonna Roberts said...

Partial Recall made me think the most. I love thing about how memories and emotions make up our identity and this reading made me think about it on a deep level. I also can’t believe something could be created to influence someones mood or thoughts. Thats kind of scary to me. This reading made me think about how sometimes during meditation some peoplenhave problems because they feel like theyre losing their memories, therefore losing themselves too.

Kelsey McNeil said...

The reading the challenged me the most was “Partial Recall”. It challenged me so much because the thought of changing someone’s memory was something very challenging that I’ve never thought about it. It caused me to think about the future and how this could be used for people who have had terrible experiences in the past. Even though it challenged me a lot it also was one of my favorite readings.

Breonna Roberts said...

Partial Recall was a really good really. It made me think a lot about how memories, emotions and thoughts define us as people. It made me thinking about how in meditation, a lot of times people have problems letting go becauss they feel like theyre losing their sense of self when they feel like theyre losing their memories. Also, if there ever were able to mess around with peoples memories or feelings that would be really scary. The read really made me think about how peoples emotions are all dependamt on their backgrounds too.

Kameryn Sabino said...

The story partial recall stretched my mind the most because of how interested I was in it. the concept of memory is just a really interesting topic in my eyes. I had to go against my first thoughts and I had to really listen to all sides and perspectives. There wasn't a simple answer. I had to put in a lot more thought.

Stella Nguepnang said...

I think the article "At Risk," by Jourdan Imani Kieth challenged my thinking the most out of all the readings in the semester. Our society places such a difference between animals and humans. This article bridged the gap and made me see the connection between the civil rights movement and the movement to help endangered species.

Kendall Clark said...

After reading through these articles, the one that I thought challenged my thinking the most was "Life, death, and grim routine fill the day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic." This article made me realize just how tragic the Ebola epidemic truly was. Hearing the stories of what people were going through is something I will not forget. I remember having to tell my roommates about what I had read after finishing the reading. Hearing personal accounts of the illness was truly eye-opening,

Christen King said...

The most interesting and stretched my mind was "At Risk" by Jourdan Imani Keith. It was a great read & made a great comparison between the term endangered species and at-risk youth. It showed the lack of concern for humans and the very odd way of thinking in America. Keith made it very obvious that we put a lot of effort into protecting our wildlife because we recognize their value, but we're unable to do that with our own, usually minority, people. Overall, it was well-written and gave incredibly insight.

TOMIKA COLLINS said...

The article that was the most thought provoking to me was the Partial Recall reading. It made me think about how our memories are tied to our emotions. Also, it made me consider what type of person would I be if some or all of my memories were removed. Would I be more or less sensitive, emotional, or honest? Is maintaining all of the traumatic memories really worth the pain it is just to remember them? I guess I will never know.

Jayla Pierce said...

"At Risk" challenged my thinking the most. I have never thought minorities to be compared to an endangered species. The more I thought about it the more I realized that she was right. It's an interesting comparison that I wouldn't have thought of. When Jourdan Imani Keith wrote, "Their label protects them," it got me thinking. She made an important difference between endangered species and minorities known very clearly. While being labeled as at-risk for species helps them, being labeled as at-risk for minorities hinders them. Being labeled as a minority gives you a certain background or stereotype that comes with the label. Your looked at differently even though we all have problems or things that we go through. Like Keith said, "All youth are at risk-the risks are just different." just like some species are at risk for different reasons such as being at the bottom of the food chain, being at the top, and even being the most well-known or sought after, these are all different reason for the same issue overall. Some are just more noticeable or more challenging or dangerous than others because off the circumstances. In then end it shouldn't matter about the what race you are or what gender you are. We all struggle, feel pain, laugh, and succeed. It may not be for the same reasons, but in the end all that shouln't matter.

Shaina Falkner said...

The article that challenged my thinking the most was "Partial Recall" by Michael Specter. Trying to decide if the procedure was ethical vs. unethical was difficult, in my opinion. Some people try to forget certain memories because of how painful they can be so this is a reason why it would be unethical. But, it can be seen as a necessary evil, because, as explained in the writing, the procedure heals the emotional wound attached to the memory, which can improve the mental health of many people. This article, also, made me think of some memories that make me upset and how things might be different for me if I were to be put through the procedure.

Kiara Coker said...

The reading that impacted me the most was Sheri Fink’s “Life, death, and Grim Routine Fill the Day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic". Being a pre-med major it showed me the importance of my future job. It's always something new going on in a hospital even though it would be kind of the same routine. It also shows how people deal with sickness and death.

Dejanee Geeters said...

Sheri Fink’s “Life, Death and Grim routine Fill the Day at Liberian Ebola Clinic” stood out to me a lot due to the gruesome images she discusses from the herrendous disease.This article showcased how desperate times really do call for desperate measures. It made me think about things that really didn’t cross my mind. For example it lead me to realize that the most important thing people seek in life is comfort, love. This article really made me think about how privileged we are in America and how we take things for granted. After reading about people losing there lives and dealing with a disease so harsh like Ebola it showed me that there are terrible things happening and that everybody should come together and help everyone out.

Ronnie Akpan said...

The article that definitely resonated to me the most was "Phineas Gage." The remarkable feature about this novel is that it touches base on the humility shown by the man who helped Gage with his recovery. The man states that he never genuinely helped Gage, but he gave Gage the positive reinforcement to uplift him to do well. This action just shows the kind of humanity that is much needed in our world to allow us to have a greater sense of well-being.

Samontriona P said...

Out of all of the articles we have read and commented on, "Life, Death, and Grim Routine Fill the Day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic," by Sheri Fink is what challenged me to rethink my preconceived ideas. This is because I didn't realize how much of an effect it had on mankind. WHen ebola first came out to the public, a counselor from my school was near the place where the outbreak occurred, but not close enough to get it. She still had to take many tests before coming back to school, and when she arrived back everyone was saying she had Ebola.This caused her to quit her job because instead of students coming to her for counseling, they stayed away from her because of the accusations. This opened my eyes because I didn't think it was that big of a deal until I read this article. The students should have just been happy that she had made it back safe and Ebola free.

Anonymous said...

The article that most challenged my thinking is “Partial Recall”. This is because this made me think of what drugs is acceptable or not. And what criteria we use to determine what drugs are accetable. Weed is considered a drug but is illegal in many states. However, it is the last harmful and dangerous drug compared to all of the lab made drugs that are legal. Painkillers are legal however they cause more problems and addiction that weed does.

Thomas Moses

Youssef Hassan said...

Reading Partial Recall by Michael Specter made me think much more than i did for the other readings because reading about the physiology of the brain is pretty difficult. I am sure that it takes time for most people to understand how the brain works or how each specific neuron functions, or what goes on with neurotransmitters within a synapse.

Jada Baker said...

The reading that challenged my thinking the most was Partial Recall. This reading made me rethink what is ethical and what isnt. Typically I would agree that changing someones memories would be unethical. However since it can be used to help those who suffer with PTSD I would change my opinion to that it is ethical.

-Jada Baker

Dayejah Coates said...

I feel that "At Risk" challenged my thinking the most because she took two things that I would say are completely unrelated and made us look at them through her eyes, pointing out the similarities. I enjoyed this reading for that reason.

Qcadwell said...

Partial recall was the most impactful article to me because I never considered that trauma could cause a person to lose their memory. This article challenged my thinking because I have never pondered the ethics of giving medication to a person to restore their painful memories nor have I ever thought that the world of mental health was as complex as it is.

Devin Ellis-Martin said...

What stuck with me the most was "Life, Death, and grim routine fill the day at a Liberian Ebola Clinic". I think this reading is really important because it illustrates how gruesome some doctors’ take can be and how sometimes even they, can be wrong.

Isaiah Johnson said...

Into the Maelstrom taught me that not only is global warming melting the ice caps, but the ice caps melting is accelerating global warming, which in turn cycles back and forth, speeding up the process. But what really changed my views was how "Partial Recall" changed my mind on the subject from, "I don't truly agree," to "I agree." If they can get that drug right, they could potentially cure trauma for good, which is something I thought I wouldn't be saying so soon, but am glad I am.

Jonathan Sanchez said...

The Article that impacted me the most was the article about the Ebola clinic. When the Ebola epidemic grew into the western world, I was young and thought that it was just a bad disease. I would picture it as something like the chicken pox or a really bad flu. When I read this article, it completely shook my world. To witness what the clinic went through and what patients had to go through first hand was an eye opener. It horrific and made me realize that the Ebola outbreak was way worse than I thought it was. Though we are safer now, I have a newfound fear for the disease we know as Ebola

Anonymous said...

The article that most challenged my thinking was Jourdan Imani Keith's article, At Risk. This is so because it pushed me to look differently at the way that a lot of things are labeled. For example, animals that have a chance at their species going extinct are labeled as "at risk", and that same label goes for teens that live in low income communities with poor education. It also challenged me to think about the way that these labels are handled. If a species is listed as an at-risk species, then the government will not hesitate to provide protection for them; however, if a group of people are listed as at-risk, it may be a while before they receive any aid at all from people outside of their little group.
-Kevin Cox

Precious Middleton said...

The most challenging reading would be "At Risk" because it made me thinking of my sister. It made me see that I would need to try a different approach to making my sister a better person. I was once an 'at risk' teen, and I hated when people labelled me as something when they could have helped me.

Precious Middleton said...

The most challenging reading would be "At Risk" because it made me thinking of my sister. It made me see that I would need to try a different approach to making my sister a better person. I was once an 'at risk' teen, and I hated when people labelled me as something when they could have helped me.