Pepinsky in ASCII

[from Gary Cziko 930811.2030 UTC]

Whoops! Looks like I made a big boo-boo in attaching Pepinsky's file as a
Microsoft Word BinHex file instead of as an ASCII file.

So please bear with me as I try again.--Gary


                              Hal Pepinsky
                             August 11, 1993


As I wrote "What is Crime, What is Peace?" for the Journal of Criminal
Justice Education, this class kept nagging at me, as indeed it had all
summer. The syllabus below is in one sense an attempt to practice what I
preach in that essay. Bill Breeden has spent the two years as an
associate instructor we allow our master's students. The big class I
teach had come to reflect his influence and thinking fully as much as
mine. In mourning the loss of his team teaching, I felt forced to
reconsider what has become important to me about introducing "alternative
social control systems" to criminal justice majors especially. I also
felt moved to consider what I was learning from the successes and failures
especially of my own role in the various serious disputes I got embroiled
in last spring--those of Little Rock Reed, Shane Johns, Debbie Williams
and others. I have felt called upon again, too, to review my grading
practices to try to reconcile them with my conscience--to make something
positive out of the experience, to do so on my own honest terms.

After a lot of agonizing, and consultation with friends, colleagues and
incoming associate instructors, I offer this. As I have reached each
stage of this syllabus I have found myself changing my mind repeatedly or
drawing from an array of options that I had considered. Eventually, the
syllabus took me to its own ending. It is one of the longer syllabi
(though not the longest) I have written, and yet as you can see I still
leave the class largely undescribed. So much of it is new to me, I have
very little idea of how it will work out. I can't wait to see...

                          CJUS P202, sec. 1951
                                Fall 1993

Lectures: MW, 8-8:50 am, BH 013, Hal Pepinsky (off. hrs. M 11-12 and W
10-11 or by arrangement in Sycamore 319, 855-1450; 855-9325 mess.).

Discussions: Fridays, one of secs. 1952-1966 (see class schedule), taught
by Scott Ballock, Jim Downey, Amy Fisher, Pauline Schloesser or Bonnie
Vesely, section assignments and office hrs. to be announced. Please make
sure the associate instructor in the discussion section you are attending
knows you are there by the second week of class at the latest. S/he will
grade you.


This class is the only required criminal justice course in the world of
its kind. Check the bulletin description, and you'll see that the premise
of this course is that to understand policing and punishing crime, it pays
to understand how social control works in other areas of life, such as
education, the family, in media portrayals of life, and in religious
matters. I (Hal Pepinsky, your returning lecturer) have felt comfortable
teaching this course the past seventeen years because I myself presume
that social control works and fails the same way in all these areas, from
the prison cell to the place where a parent grounds a child, from war to
crime to punishment, from justice to peace. I presume justice is what
makes us feel more socially secure, and whatever works or fails in prisons
has similar consequences in various places--the schoolroom, the barroom
and the board room--and on different scales--from disciplining one's child
to disciplining the people of Iraq, to disciplining criminals. You are of
course welcome to find otherwise, but know that the material I am
presenting is organized around this premise of mine: There is one global
alternative to punishing criminals or doing nothing about crime, and that
is to make peace among the antagonists as one makes peace anywhere,
anytime. This course is for learning to distinguish how people make peace
or make violence regardless of the setting in which they are found. As
far as I am concerned the ultimate test of how much you have learned is
your own capacity to make peace in place of violence in any social
relations in which you invest yourself--whether as a police officer, a
parent, a teacher, a co-worker, a voter or a friend. Ultimately, the test
of whether we know how to achieve social control is our capacity to become
socially secure with anyone we depend on.

From this vantage point, the same principles that work to make us feel

safer about the offenders we want in prison apply to making me feel more
secure that you students have learned something worthwhile from this
class--ultimately that you have gotten high grades because you have
deserved them. For me to sign off on a bunch of low grades is like a
police chief issuing a report that crime has risen: If true it signifies
I have failed to educate, or that the police chief has failed to keep the
peace. If false, I fail to know what education is; s/he fails to know
what peace to keep. Knowing that students blow off lectures and get A's
without caring about the course material is like having a crimes reported
to me as a police chief and not acting against it; it amounts in the
law'n'order view to letting ignorance go uneducated (which indeed was a
major ground for kicking me out of my first couple of teaching jobs).
Indeed I have discovered that police are trapped in the same bind as I am
in teaching: People simply don't believe their reports indicating the
problem of crime or ineducability is under control. I have a lot greater
capacity to control a classroom than a police chief has to control a
community. If I know anything about social control, I ought to be able to
design a system in which students demonstrate to the satisfaction of all
concerned that they really have been educated and learned something
worthwhile about the subject matter described in the course bulletin.

You'll see in the student evaluations from last semester I've included at
the front of the first of the P202 reading packets Copy Corner has for you
to buy for this class, that I was repeatedly criticized for tearing down
criminal justice and not talking enough about alternatives.

I have taken this criticism to heart.

I have also taken to heart the claim that it is my responsibility to get
more students out of bed and into lecture at eight in the morning, and
make lectures worth their while.

I'm making two basic changes. First, I'm incorporating a lot more
material on the practice and theory of alternatives to punishing
offenders. Second, I'm making our capacity to emerge from the course
secure that you have learned something worthwhile about alternative social
control systems a central problem for us to talk about and you to write
about for a grade. I'm going to give you new reasons to come to lecture
sessions to earn a grade, and challenge you to show that you have learned
something worthwhile for the grade you have earned. I'm going to ask you
to relate how social control works in prisons and other settings to how it
works as between and among us in a criminal justice class.


Reading packets at Copy Corner and three books at bookstores: Howard
Zinn's Declarations of Independence, Criminology as Peacemaking edited by
Richard Quinney and me, and We Who Would Take No Prisoners, Selections
from the Fifth International Conference on Penal Abolition edited by Brian
MacLean and me (which should be on bookshelves by late September).


I'll stick with a couple of established procedures. The AI is bound by
this syllabus to grade you ultimately on four essays each of you turns in
at the middle and end of the semester, on questions or issues I pose right
here in the syllabus. I give the AIs discretion to operationalize my
grading criteria with you as they see fit. I require only that they make
their reasons for grading explicit to you and help show you how to improve
your grade if you wish to take the initiative. I am not willing to
second-guess the fairness of a grade until the student has tried to work
the problem out directly with the AI.

The exam questions reflect those I find myself most immediately
confronting in my own research on how to make peace in place of crime and
punishment; they are the things I'm most curious to learn about how others
feel, and to try out answers of my own to see whether others think I'm
onto something useful--useful across settings in everyday life.

This semester I want to get down to basics. I have restricted myself to
asking you to answer only the four questions below throughout the
semester. You will receive one set of grades for whatever of the four
typed double-spaced two-page answers you have turned in in discussion or
into your AI's mailbox in Sycamore 301 by Friday, October 15 at 3 pm. You
should get the exam back from your AI in discussion section or lecture
within about a week, and have a week to rewrite your answers thereafter
for a mid-term grade.

Turn in your graded first exam with your second to your AI's mailbox in
Sycamore 302 by Friday, December 10, 3 pm. In your second exam, simply
write a reasoned account of how your answers to the four questions have
changed since the mid-term based upon, among other things, lecture and
reading material. That is, essentially, show the AI you have learned
something you didn't already know about the questions as of the mid-term.
The questions are big enough to keep thinking about. For the second exam
it is up to you to ask your AI informally to review drafts of your answers
before they become due. The grades on each of your eight answers will be
averaged for your final grade, except that your AI may give weight to
improvement in the second exam or give extra credit as you two arrange.
Put in a stamped, self-addressed postcard if you want the AI to mail you
your second exam and course grades. Grading will be done, recorded and
posted Monday, December 20. Exams will be available for pick-up in your
AI's box in Sycamore 303.

I know this about grading; I'm like a police chief who wants honest
reassurance that the community is safer. I want your answers about your
own involvement in social control above all to be honest. If they are
honest, I cannot foresee that you will agree with me on what you ought to
know at any time, because I know that honest people never entirely agree
on anything, and because I believe that only disagreement with what I
already thought I knew teaches me anything new. Telling me what I already
know when you don't feel it or care about it is like failure to report to
police when you're hurt or threatened or when you don't give a damn: it is
a lie, and I do not believe that real learning or real anything can rest
on lies.

I rely on the AIs who meet with you in small groups to use their own
grading discretion. I ask only that they make how to make the grade clear
to each of you, especially when you ask them for clarification. I leave
it to your initiative whether to do what the AI asks for the grade. AIs
in this class initiated a practice of giving you supplementary syllabi of
their own. They are welcome to pin down their grading standards with you
as they please. In principle, all standards set down are subject to
negotiation. For my own part should I face on rare occasions reviewing a
grade set by an AI, I will look for honest initiative by the student to
find something personally important to write answers about, and
extensiveness of the range of parallels drawn from across settings,
including those offered in readings and lectures. I accept honest
confusion as an inevitable part of honest learning. I look for honest
attempts to make sense of the confusion. In sum, I look for signs of
honest effort to learn something from the class.

I used to pin down my grading criteria further. This semester I'm going
to give up the pretense of knowing any more precisely what I'm looking for
in an A answer, and make the problem a central part of the exams


      1. What makes you believe that your social security or anyone else's
is enhanced by anyone's violation of the Golden Rule?

      Rationale: For years I have been trying to find ways to express how
we believe we would feel safe when we struggle against crime and
injustice. This semester I'd like to experiment with one way of
expressing a principle by which we humans commonly believe safe, socially
secure people would live: Do/do not unto others as you would/would not
have them do unto you. I'm asking whether it is practical to follow the
Golden Rule, whether you and others feel more secure and at peace by
following the rule or taking exception to it, favoring a violent response
to violence. Basically, I'm supposing, the violence we fear when we speak
against crime, corruption, injustice or tyranny is the threat that others
will do unto us as they would not tolerate our doing unto them, also known
as hypocrisy, the double standard and injustice. We will hear and read
victims of war, rape and prisoners telling us that the terror caused by
having done unto oneself as one cannot do back may far exceed the physical
evidence of injury. We conclude that some people don't deserve to be
treated as they are required to treat those who treat them.

It is quite common for us to suppose that some people--the enemy,
criminals, women we meet in bars--deserve some other people--our soldiers,
our police and prison keepers, men who buy drinks for women in bars--to do
unto them as they would not tolerate having done to them in return.
Variously, we believe it does good things for the violated, for the
violator and for us who watch and cheer on the sidelines.

Early in the semester will introduce readings in which people who deal
with prisoners in particular find that social security permits no
exceptions to the Golden Rule. I believe that myself, and I have believed
it long enough that I don't expect y'all to snap me out of it during this
class. I know I am in a small minority in this or most any group that
isn't self-consciously pacifist. By that I don't mean I live more
virtuously or nonviolently than anyone else; I mean I have trouble
believing I am more socially secure because of my own violations of the
Golden Rule or anyone else's, that is all. Most of us believe that for
some class(es) of people, violence works; it makes us safer. Particularly
because I want your education to be honest, I have no call to expect any
of you who believe in exceptions to the Golden Rule to give up your
beliefs either. Rather, the challenge is for you to describe and account
for your own position, and to explain what fears or hopes lead you to
choose to depart from others' positions including mine. I'm asking the
AIs to abide by this understanding. I'm also asking you to draw on the
array of cases we consider in lecture to illustrate your position and the
problems you find accepting contrasting positions on whether to follow the
Golden Rule. The exercise is primarily one of getting in touch with why
you fear to live and let live by the Golden Rule and with what makes you
really feel more socially secure.

      2. What assurances do you require to become secure in the knowledge
that your answer to question 1 shows you have learned a lot about
something you ought to know in this criminal justice course, what
obstacles have you confronted in lecture or readings to gaining this
security, and to what extent does it require violations of the Golden Rule
in the way I teach this course to overcome those obstacles?

      Rationale: In this class in lecture I will be searching with you
across social settings--from battlefields to bedrooms--for clues as to
what frustrates reaching a state of mutual social security in any setting.
Here your security and mine rests on your feeling confident that you have
gotten the grade you want and that that grade is meaningful for yourself
as you would hope it would be to others. In questions 2-4 I am responding
as directly as I can to the demand in last spring's student evaluations
that I devote more attention to alternatives. Nowhere is the problem of
alternatives more immediate to us as a group than in how I teach and how
you learn in this class of ours.

Graded education puts us in a bind: My signing off on so many A's in P202
each semester is taken as prima facie evidence that students who have
gotten A's may well have learned little. Student course evaluations
indicate that many who have taken the class believe this. I am open to
alternatives--to ways you can join a crowd doing well in this class and
feeling you deserve recognition for it. The question remains for you to
consider whether I am fooling myself or anyone else by presuming the
Golden Rule ought to have so much to do with your getting a good criminal
justice education.

I am willing to spend as much time as you ask in lecture explaining why I
ask these questions, and how I would answer them from course material. I
want you to assume responsibility for telling me what makes no sense about
this class or the exams, and for telling me what you think ought to be
happening in class instead. One derivative of the Golden Rule is an
abiding faith that conflict and antagonism can be overcome when it gets
openly discussed. Most directly, your feelings in this class are about
this class. Fundamentally, all formal education including this class is
an exercise in social control. What works in getting you the education
you seek in this class is our most direct test of what kind of social
control gains us social security.

You all have at your disposal vast experience of education by teachers who
grade you for knowing what they tell you to know, who presume that you
have nothing of comparable value to teach them. Feel free to draw on that
experience to evaluate the structure of this class.

      3. How has your AI contributed to and threatened your security that
your exam shows you are learning something important about criminal
justice, and for your AI to contribute to your education and grade you
fairly, do you think any violations of the Golden Rule are required of the
AI or a third party, and why?

      Rationale: Like a prison sentence imposed by a presumedly law-
abiding judge, a low grade implies the grader is entitled to pass judgment
on someone incompetent to pass judgment back (as by asking, "Why have you
failed to educate me?"). High grades are suspect for being corrupt, as a
judge's dismissal of charges against a friend would be. A fundamental
problem for you as a student in this or any course is how to get the grade
you want and feel secure about it when you get it. I'm giving you and
your AI wide latitude to work that issue out as between grader and graded.
You will negotiate terms of your grading in your own way, and in this
answer, have a chance to evaluate what works, both for the grader and for

      4. In the group of two or three you have joined in your discussion,
what have you learned of importance about your answer to question 1, and
to what extent do you think violations of the Golden Rule are required to
make your companion(s) in the group take greater advantage of educational
opportunities in this class and contribute more to your capacity to answer
question 1 well and meaningfully?

      Rationale: One major obstacle I find to educating by the Golden
Rule is the common presumption among students that I or the AI knows what
is important, and that the course is only worth the importance and
validity of what we say. My knowledge becomes more unto others as others'
knowledge becomes unto mine the more students consider my perspective and
the AIs as two among many that can be evaluated side-by-side, just as I do
when I evaluate how people fear violence and attain security across the
range of writers and speakers in the course material I introduce in
lectures. The Golden Rule in education would imply that my fellow
students have as much education to offer you as I do. It is incumbent
upon me to recognize that education.

Accordingly, I am asking your AI to set you up in groups of two or three
in each discussion section, for you to help each other figure out how to
write these exams. Try your ideas out with each other. Listen for what
your companions see in the material that you, I and your AI do not.
Should you encounter frustrations in trying to work with your companions,
consider what it would take for you to trust that your companions were
teaching you something worthwhile, or taking you seriously. Experiment.
Here as in questions 2 and 3, try some social control initiatives of your
own and evaluate whether they gain you the control you seek. And when you
do learn something you value from a companion, give the companion credit
for the insight and consider whether that contribution came from following
the Golden Rule or from violating it.


The reading materials are of two kinds: statements of what peace or
violence require of us--of what social assurances we need that we are safe
with others; and case studies of violence and peacemaking, which we will
discuss in lecture and in discussion sections side-by-side. I will focus
on the exam questions in lecture. I will introduce readings a lecture
ahead, and each Wednesday in lecture will put the coming week's readings
on the blackboard. You will get the most exam preparation out of the
lectures if you go through the reading ahead of time looking for exam
material. I and the AI's also expect you somehow to read or watch the
news enough to be familiar with some version of current world, national
and local events. We may find ourselves discussing what is happening in
the former Yugoslavia, in Somalia, in a particular execution or in local
policing for example. We should be able to have this common ground for
checking our ideas on how social control works. Lecture and discussion is
essentially for helping you figure out your exam answers, and for offering
additional case material as in videos.

We'll begin in lecture with a case study of violence close to home--sexual
violence, particularly among young people socializing. WEDNESDAY,
SEPTEMBER 1, I'll show the video "Someone You Know"--interviews of victims
including a victim of fraternity gang rape on a college campus and with
rapists--available for borrowing from the Office of Women's Affairs. The
video will be up for discussion MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, along with the
accounts of sexual assailants on and off campus and of their victims in
the Copy Corner Reader, and the chapters by Fay Honey Knopp (also in We
Who Would Take No Prisoners), by Susan Caringella-MacDonald and Drew
Humphries, and by Larry Tifft and Lyn. Markham in Criminology as
Peacemaking--all on what men need to learn about battering and raping

Let's get right into the exam topic in lecture September 6. Rapists and
sexual assailants including doers of incest keep telling us that as far as
they could see at the time, the women they hurt wanted it, asked for it or
deserved it. They may scarcely know the women, but they see womanly signs
of desire or need for the assaults. What are these differences between
what the men think they want or have to have, and what they presume the
women want or deserve? Where do the differences come from? Where do
these men get evidence to support their views? What makes the evidence
credible to them?

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, we turn to considering the victims. Isn't it fair
to presume that sexual assault teaches women who receive it, see it and
hear of it that men as a group cannot be trusted to cherish intimacy as
the victims do? At its extreme, this distrust that men can be treated as
one would treat them is summed up by a victim of date rape in "Someone You
Know": "I want to get married, but I'm afraid to go out on a date. How
can you get married when you can't date?"

Survey results indicate that a high percentage of women experience the
terror, degradation and aggravation of serious sexual assault on campuses
across the country. I presume women in class have a lot to tell us men
about how we are different from them and cannot or will not respond to the
kind of intimacy they can share with women--to offer us evidence that men
are a distinctly untrustworthy lot. Does women's distrust burden innocent
men? Is the evidence that women need to treat men as a class apart any
firmer than the evidence that men need to treat women as a class apart
(e.g., a rapist's rationalization that "women just want you to buy things
for them")? Are women any less trapped by their ignorance of what this or
that man wants than men are trapped by their ignorance of what this or
that woman wants? Ultimately, in matters as intimate as sexuality, can we
presume that men or women meet the qualifications of the Golden Rule--that
we of one gender can and should treat those of the other gender as we
ourselves want to be treated?

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, I want to consider Peter Cordella's description of
how Mennonite/Anabaptists view the problem posed by violence including
sexual assault--they are breaches of trust that we can love our neighbors
like ourselves, and "restorative justice" requires the rebuilding of trust
as between and around accuser and accused. Dave Gustafson is a Mennonite
minister and therapist who tries to put mutualism into practice in matters
of serious sexual violence. Notice in his articles in the Copy Corner
Reader packet on sexual assault how a sexual assailant in prison and an
incest survivor describe the effect of meeting the other party face-to-
face. To what extent do only victims have what assailants need to know
and hear in order for the assailants to become trustworthy, and do only
assailants have what victims need to learn to trust living freely among
men? Can the healing of the victim be separated from the healing of the
victim? How can the woman who wants to marry and have children learn to
trust dating men? In terms of the exam, doesn't successful treatment of
rapists and other offenders and healing of victims rest ultimately on
giving each other a Golden Rule's chance to explain to one another how
they feel about the violence? Are we justified in resting our faith that
women feel safe instead on finding all women's male attackers and putting
them behind bars? Whom else but a victim do we trust ever to decide that
a sex assailant has become safe to release back among us?

As a lead-in to our September 13 discussion, I'll play an 18-minute video
on this past summer's Journey of Hope against the death penalty, where
Murder Victims' Families for Reconciliation members describe how they
attain forgiveness of the murderers of their loved ones and what
forgiveness does for them. They tell us forgiveness enables them to
remember their lost loved ones as they lived instead of being preoccupied
with how they died. They have also learned not to fear the murderers.
Isn't forgiveness, in Cordella's terms, necessary to making victims and
offenders back into trusted and trusting community members? Isn't
personal interaction between victim and offender a focal element of that
process? Mahatma Gandhi made it a matter of personal principle never to
call a protest before he had taken his complaint to the source of his
problem. We know face-to-face confrontation between accuser and accused
as a matter of "fundamental fairness," of basic "due process." Don't we
all want an open-ended chance to listen to our accusers tell us to our
face what's wrong and redeem ourselves in their eyes if possible? What
deviation from or restriction of the Golden Rule in this matter promotes
or protects the social security of victims?

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, I'll lay a second case study of violence beside
the first--the Gulf War the United States Government and UN allies waged
against Iraqis in 1991 and its aftermath, showing a video of a Bill Moyers
program, "After the War" (available at Media Reserves in the library).
You'll find articles on why the US Govt. fought the war and on the
aftermath in Kuwait in a Copy Corner Reader packet. For the following
week's discussion, I'd also like you to read the first five chapter's of
Howard Zinn's Declarations of Independence, from his introduction and
depiction of "Machiavellian realism" to his essay on "Just and Unjust

In the video we see crowds cheering the troops and the generals. We also
see and hear victims of the war--people maimed, killed, terrorized, made
homeless and sick. As Zinn indicates, Machiavelli offers a defense of
this victimization. The question arises first for discussion on MONDAY,
SEPTEMBER 20, whether there is more cause to cheer US warriors for scoring
their victories than for fraternity brothers to cheer on a gang rape. Do
the victims of war any more deserve their pain than a rape victim hers?
Is the evidence we have that war victimization is worth cheering over of
a different order from the rapist's evidence that his victim wants or
deserves his attack? And in the aftermath of war do we who have cheered
the war on gain or lose security because of it, and become more or less
likely to attack others again to reassure ourselves of our own masculine
prowess? In sum, are we seeking any different kind of reassurance of
social security and power in war from what a man seeks through rape?

To be a Machiavellian realist you need a "prince" to subordinate everyone
else's welfare to. That "prince" for a rapist is one's own status as a
real man. The "prince" for us in the Gulf War was President Bush. As I
shall ask later in the semester for other authority figures like police
and prison authorities, I ask whether there are grounds for considering
anyone one's Prince, and violating the Golden Rule with whomever else
suits His purpose?

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, we turn again to victims. Do they have as much
reason to distrust Americans and arm against them as a rape victim has to
distrust the rapist or men in general? Can we achieve security with
Iraqis, Kurds and people in Kuwait without achieving their forgiveness of
the pain we have caused them? How much different is what we need to do to
achieve security for ourselves in the Persian Gulf region from what a
rapist needs to do to be trusted and forgiven by a victim? For
comparison's sake read about the Machiavellian position of "Left Realists"
on how to treat those who abuse women, and the contrasting radical
feminist position that safety for victims requires "loving attention" to
offenders (chapters by DeKeseredy and Schwartz and by Harris in
Criminology as Peacemaking). The comparison between rape and war leads us
to consider whether violating the Golden Rule in one setting (as between
individual men and women) promotes safety and social security more than in
another (as between armies).

This is all of the lecture schedule I will lay out for now. This should
be enough to show you what I think the course material has to do with the
first exam question especially. As for the last three questions, it is
appropriate for you, me and your AI to raise repeatedly whether you as
with sex and war are a partner or a victim of a one-way power trip, and of
what is required for you to trust that you are learning what you want and
need. Consider whether like dating safety or national security, a sense
that you are learning what you want and need requires that you teach me
and your AI as much as we are teaching you. Does a teacher have special
qualifications for being a classroom Prince than a president for being a
national Prince? Should a classroom have any Prince at all?

As you can see I have tried hard to think through the first four weeks of
class, and yet that schedule may change. I'll announce changes in lecture
and explain them. Thereafter, I feel obliged to cover the material in the
three books I have assigned, and to organize lectures around a set of
cases of social control I have organized into Copy Corner Reader packets,
on: Native American experience, control of speech, purification rituals--
of race and drug wars (and I expect we will also discuss homophobia),
prison experience, and police corruption. I am leaving myself the
flexibility to schedule these a week ahead at a time. I have neither
posed these exam questions on the Golden Rule nor organized readings
around them before. Once I have introduced samples of the material that
led me to think that the Golden Rule might be the unifying principle by
which people gain security from violence, I depend on you to take issue
with my proposition. I depend on you to show me what the problems with
the proposition are. Then I can pull out from among the cases those which
seem to speak most directly to that problems and shed light on them.

Why come to lecture and discussion? One reason is that you'll get lost if
you don't; you cannot count on coming back to lecture after a string of
absences and expect to follow the discussion there. Another is that it is
your chance to raise what you don't understand and try out your ideas to
get your own handle on the exam questions and the reading material. If
lecture alienates, angers or puzzles you, I'd prefer you say or ask what
is eating you right away, in class itself or outside of class as you wish.
This class is designed to be easier and richer the more you put into it.
The exams are designed to be those you can reflect upon repeatedly rather
than those you can cram for. As I see it, ultimately we face a Catch-22:
your presence and input are required to make the class worthwhile for
either of us; you cannot sit back and be fed an education by me or the AI

One of our required classes has to be taught at eight in the morning. I
have let that class be mine. I pledge to be there awake and active. It's
up to you to get there and try to tune in, and to let me know what you are
tuned in to. One final reason for coming to class is because I and your
AI value your presence there, but that doesn't preclude your coming to get
something out of it for yourself. A social control tip: Knowing what you
want out of class is the first step toward getting it, saying it the next.
Please try me, and help me learn what central fears, hopes and faith guide
us all in our various attempts at social control.

                                          Love and peace, Hal Pepinsky