Candi Cann: Hello BIC Alums! This August marked my five-year anniversary here at Baylor, and Baylor’s campus keeps growing more beautiful every year. Maia is now in fourth grade, an avid reader of anime, and learning to play the cello. This past year I published several articles on death and dying, and my next book Dying to Eat (UKY Press) is in the final stages of production. In June, I participated in an NEH Seminar at UVA, in Charlottesville, Virginia, where Maia and I stayed for a month, while I began research on the first and oldest African-American funeral home in Virginia. Later I traveled to Brazil and gave the opening keynote at the VII International Conference Imagens da Morte in Sao Paolo, Brazil, and this fall over fall break, I am giving two invited university lectures—at FSU, and the University of Florida. Maia and I are hoping to sneak in a trip to Harry Potter World in between the lectures. As Dumbledore said, “Let us step out into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure.” May your own adventures be worthy ones full of excitement and knowledge.
Paul Carron: I just finished my second year on tenure track in the BIC, but my seventh year teaching Social World I, which I once again coordinated. I taught a revamped Biblical Heritage with Dr. Novakovic that spent a lot more time on ethical issues and the students really seemed to enjoy that focus. I also taught Social World II and had the opportunity to teach my first upper division elective in the philosophy department on contemporary issues in ethics. The course focused on the intersection of social psychology and virtue ethics. I am looking forward to teaching the course again this spring. My paper “Monkeys, Men, and Moral Responsibility” was accepted for publication, and I wrote two articles on Kierkegaard’s psychology that are currently under review. My children just keep growing! Ellie had her first piano recital this summer (pictured left) and just began the third grade. The twins have one more year before kindergarten, and Nora is talking our ears off!
Sharon Conry: This is my 15th year to teach in the BIC, and it has been wonderful! Each new semester brings a great new group of students who teach ME, more than I think I teach them. I have also had the opportunity to develop, write, and try out new labs in Natural World. Some have worked out fabulously, others not so much! Luckily, BIC students are great about adjusting to new things, and it has worked out well for us. After much thought, prayer and saving, we built a small home in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Georgia. What a wonderful respite from the summer heat in Texas! We also had the opportunity to take care of two of our three grandchildren for several weeks while their mother, father, and our oldest grandson went on a mission trip to Ecuador. The time together was a great time to bond and create long-term memories with our grandchildren. During our months in Georgia, we also had plenty of time to do our favorite things: hiking and eating! However, coming back to Texas and its 104 degree heat was a shock! I can’t wait for fall to get here!
Stacey Hibbs: Dr. Hibbs continues to teach in both BIC and Great Texts. This semester she is teaching World Cultures I and Social World I, and in the spring she taught a BIC Capstone, “Friendship: Happiness, Virtue, and Love,” with her husband, Dean Thomas Hibbs.
Mark Long: This year, my wife and I traveled back to the Air Force Academy, where I taught previously, and we took our 11 year old granddaughter to San Francisco and Monterey, California. Of note, several BIC students aided in my quest to grow a blue beard. My joint work continues with Sam Perry on the rhetorical strategies of Daesh. My focus now is on the rise of Daesh-sponsored, extra-territorial violence as its self-proclaimed caliphate crumbles. In particular, I am interested in the neologism that Daesh uses to describe and promote suicide operations, inghimas.
Charles McDaniel: My wife and I escaped the Texas heat long enough to breathe in some mountain air in New Mexico and Colorado (pictured left). We stayed in a 7000-square-foot Sears kit house in Canyon, Texas, that was built in 1906 and was the boarding house where Georgia O’Keefe took most of her meals when she was teaching at West Texas Normal College (now West Texas A&M). We also stayed with a nice lady in Ridgway, Colorado, who was the personal assistant to actor Dennis Weaver of “Gunsmoke” and “McCloud” TV fame and had some interesting stories about the Hollywood life and why Weaver came to be a committed ecologist.
As for research/publications, I’m working on a paper titled “Religion, Social Justice, and the New Eugenics: Transcending the Market for Human Enhancement” that will be presented at the annual conference of the Society for Ethics Across the Curriculum in October. I’m also developing a grant proposal for submission to the National Endowment for the Humanities that could help bolster the academic connection between the Honors College and Hankamer School of Business. A couple of BICers are lending support to this effort.
Sam Perry: I continue to research representations of violence in protest movements, and I am currently looking at the analogous rhetorical structures present in the anti-lynching movement, the Civil Rights movement, and current protests of racial violence. I am also coauthoring work with Dr. Long on Daesh recruitment videos and speeches. We are looking at the ways representations of violence are used to radicalize and recruit people to extremist causes. Additionally, Dr. Walden and I have completed one new rhetoric textbook and will be completing a second textbook in the spring. I will teach both rhetoric classes, Social World I, and World Cultures IV this year. When I take a break from all things BIC and research, my wife Mary and I love to travel, and this summer we took a road trip through the Southeast with stops in Atlanta, Tampa, and New Orleans. When in Waco, we enjoy time with family, friends, and our dogs (Seamus and Remy).