Faculty Development Presents Reading Group on Issues for Faculty of Color, and Fabulous Friday: The Ethics of Reality TV on Dec. 2.

Faculty Development will host two events on Friday, Dec. 2: Reading Group on Issues for Faculty of Color, and Fabulous Friday: The Ethics of Reality TV.

Reading Group on Issues for Faculty of Color

The Faculty Development Center and the Office of Institutional Diversity are co-sponsoring a reading-and-discussion group on the St. Paul campus. The first meeting, which will be held from noon to 1 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, will examine issues of relevance for faculty of color.

The first reading will be a chapter by Anthony D. Ross, “Learning to Play the Game,” from the edited volume Faculty of Color: Teaching in Predominantly White Colleges and Universities.

The sponsors encourage all interested faculty members to attend. The group will meet in the Faculty Development Center, Room 403, O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library Center. Lunch will be served.

Register here for the Dec. 2 session. Participants will receive an electronic copy of the reading.

The reading group also will meet:

  • Noon Friday, Jan. 20. This session will focus on student evaluations with a reading to be announced.
  • Noon Friday, Feb. 17. The third reading is from the book The Black Academic’s Guide to Winning Tenure – Without Losing Your Soul.

Faculty who work primarily on the Minneapolis campus and would like to participate in a similar reading-and-discussion group that would meet there, email Dr. Ann Johnson, director of faculty development.

Fabulous Friday, reality TV and ethics? Really? Yes.

In their forthcoming book, The Ethics of Reality TV, Dr. Wendy Wyatt and Dr. Kris Bunton argue that reality television programs matter in ways that influence our ethical lives. Reality TV – like all communication – helps shape the way individuals view and interact with the world, helps make the world meaningful and even helps construct that world. The book, therefore, takes reality TV seriously and explores the ethical questions it raises.

Dr. Kris Bunton

Dr. Kris Bunton

Dr. Wendy Wyatt

Dr. Wendy Wyatt

What do Bunton and Wyatt, with the help of nine other contributors, discover in their exploration? The genre is complicated and sometimes surprising. Whether viewers recognize as reality TV contest shows such as “Project Runway,” “The Amazing Race” and “American Idol,” or family-oriented narratives such as “Jon and Kate Plus 8,” “19 Kids and Counting” and “Little People, Big World,” or the shows about offbeat occupations such as “Pawn Stars,” “Ice Road Truckers” and “Cake Boss,” reality TV offers a way to examine ethical issues that range from exploitation, invasion of privacy, excessive commercialization and stereotyping, to issues such as flourishing, democratization and community building.

This Fabulous Friday event will be held from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, in Room 102, O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library Center, and simulcast to Room 419, Opus Hall, in Minneapolis. Wine and refreshments, including nonalcoholic beverages, will be served. Registration is requested; register here.