We asked our faculty and authors to share with us some of their favorite books and movies. Their responses are posted in “Faculty Favorites: Books and Movies.”
The World is Flat— My favorite book (recently) was Tom Friedman’s “The World is Flat.” I was interested in it for a couple of reasons. I read many of Friedman’s columns in the New York Times about the changing nature of the world economy, as well as science, technology and education. He quite often cited our National Science Foundation statistical studies and analyses in building his individual columns. The book dramatically yet eloquently stated a view he championed for years that the rest of the world is slowly catching up to the United States in innovation, wealth generation and in some ways, passing the U.S. in educational achievement. The reality of this “flatness” is in this growing global economy and interaction, and the challenges we have in maintaining world leadership in areas the U.S. often has taken for granted until the dawn of the new century we are now in.
Schindlers List— My favorite movie is no longer new. But it left my wife and me speechless as we left the theater. Schindler’s List left an emotional impression on me about the realities of the Holocaust, and as I recall the evening we first saw it, not only did it leave us speechless, but as we looked around, we saw an entire theater empty with almost no sound, as though we were caught in a stuper that rendered us totally overcome by the horrors of the time, seeing it in ways we had never seen or known about previously. The end of the movie, where former Holocaust survivors get together, and stories were shared, drove home the emotional experience to a level that seems indescribable, even now.
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