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What We're Reading | 11.25.12

Each week, members of the WFPL news team will spotlight interesting stories we've read over the past week for your weekend reading pleasure:

Gabe Bullard:This week, I found that Joseph Lapin in Salon is discussing the issue everyone danced around but avoided at Thanksgiving dinner -- was Jack Kerouac really a hack? The opinions vary, and I've lived my life in cycles of loving and being indifferent about his work. (I doubt anyone at Thanksgiving was thinking about Kerouac.) Read "Was Jack Kerouac Really a Hack?"Laura Ellis: Let me just say, I loved the Lincoln movie. I thought it was so cool that I'm actually planning to see it again while it's still on the big screen -- and I almost never see movies in the theater, 'cause I hate to be quiet for that long. And yet, Kate Masur is right: Abolition wasn't a gift bestowed on black Americans by benevolent white folks. African-American activists played a large part in the struggle for their own liberation, and it would have been awesome to see that part of the story on screen. Read "In Spielberg's Lincoln, Passive Black Characters."Devin Katayama:This week I read "College of Future Could Be Come One, Come All," in the New York Times. The article responds to a small, but growing trend of offering higher education courses online, for free. (Kahn Academy is doing a similar thing.) There are some problems with moving online, the article suggests, such as the ability of less financially stable colleges keeping pace and the quality of programs moving to the web. The article explains how educators are still feeling their way through the transition online, and it shows we’ll likely experience another few years of growing pains with applying our technology to education systems. Read "College of Future Could Be Come One, Come All."Joseph Lord: In this Opinionator piece for The New York Times, an English teacher argues that narrative nonfiction should get more emphasis in schools. Read "What Should Children Read?"Phillip M. Bailey:Read "MSNBC Battles 'Pro-Obama' Label Heading into President's Second Term."

Joseph Lord is the online managing editor for WFPL.