[Publisher's Note: Howard Stein, Boles Blogs author and inspiration, died at age of 90 on October 14, 2012 in Stamford, Connecticut. This article now appears in print as an equalizing effort to preserve Dr. Stein's teaching and thinking as David Boles shares this, and other works, from his private Prairie Voice archive. Howard wrote this article in the Spring of 1984 and, 30 years later, the lessons are still ripe and rich and damning.]
For those suffering the wounds of life, the university has become a hospital. For the woman in her middle forties whose husband has left her for “a young thing” after twenty-four years of marriage and four children, the university is the first thought where she may go for help.
[Publisher's Note: Boles Blogs author Howard Stein died on October 14, 2012 at 90 years of age. In an ongoing effort to preserve his legacy and memory, David Boles is sharing articles and preserving other works from his private Prairie Voice archive. The following article was likely written by Dr. Stein in the early 1980's -- and his point still rings true, and still bites us with a bitter hardness of the flat truth -- three decades later.]
Public education in the minds of the parents, schoolboards, teachers, and local politicians seems to have as its purpose either the preparing of the young for higher education (preferably private education), or the preparing of the young for a variety of jobs and trades.
[Author's Note: This is a portion of a speech I gave to the Southeast Theatre Conference in 2000.]
In Robert Aulett’s play, Alberta Radiance, Alberta speaks the opening like, “I have this human life to live, and I don’t know what to do with it.” The operative word is human, as in “the human condition,” “the human predicament” or “the human comedy.” When we utter such expressions, we assume the listener knows what we mean, but in my 78 years of living, I have never heard anyone explain what that “human” condition, predicament, comedy or life is.