GRAVER: Great man or good man?

October 8, 2012 • 13
“He’s not inspiring.” This is the conventional wisdom surrounding Gov. Mitt Romney. Even after last Wednesday, this remains, by wide regard, Romney’s fatal flaw. He will never give that great, transformative speech. He will never be that generational candidate. Despite all efforts, he will just be Mitt — and that will be far from enough. »

GRAVER: Tailgate Village’s dark side

September 24, 2012 • 7
I wonder what would happen if someone unfamiliar with American football were asked to speculate on what a “Student Tailgate Village” might be. Perhaps it’s one of those weird team-building corporate retreats for new employees. Or a fun, hip place where people can study outside, like an academic Disneyland. Or even that weird Swedish toy »

GRAVER: Baseball and bluebooking

September 10, 2012 • 5
Over the summer, while watching baseball one night, I began to think it would be kind of great if professors were more like baseball players. Now, this wasn’t some secret wish that my Latin professor would grow eight inches and develop an infatuation with human growth hormone. There was just something intriguing about the way »

GRAVER: April at Yale

April 19, 2012 • 6
For those who did not catch it, Tupac returned this weekend at Coachella. Brought back to the stage via the work of James Cameron’s company Digital Domain, the deceased rapper performed a live, hologram-enabled set with Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg. And while Cameron was resurrecting Tupac, I received a chain email from Newt Gingrich’s »

GRAVER: Service, not politics

April 6, 2012 • 7
Last week, Yale announced that the class of 2016 had an acceptance rate of only 6.8 percent. In such an astonishingly competitive year, I can only imagine the great minds and talents coming into this school. However, I would hazard to guess — with a relative degree of confidence — that these students are not »

GRAVER: Batman, hero from the one percent

March 22, 2012 • 16
Along with a good number of American males, ages 18-34, I went to see “Project X” over spring break. Although it was an experience I will forever regret, I did get to see the trailer for the next Batman movie. A certain scene caught my attention. About halfway through the trailer, Bruce Wayne (Batman) is »

GRAVER: Church and state in conflict

February 23, 2012 • 150
Imagine yourself as an Orthodox Jewish owner of a local kosher delicatessen. Things are going well until, one day, for whatever reason, the government passes a law requiring that all food outlets serve pork. What are you to do? Bishop William Lori presented this hypothetical to Congress last week in the wake of Health and »

GRAVER: Happy birthday, President Reagan

February 9, 2012 • 32
The last week has seen its share of particularly biting partisanship among undergraduates. Some of the most prominent have been the protests at the Harvey Mansfield Master’s Tea and True Love Week’s “The Person as a Gift” lecture. In addition, the alleged sign-taking at Occupy New Haven has sparked controversy across campus. You almost wish »

GRAVER: Learning to lead

January 26, 2012 • 11
On Tuesday, President Barack Obama and the administration of Student Leadership Training shared a very special thing: a flat audience. The president quipped about “spilled milk” (and a lowly speechwriter returned forever to the mailroom) to a groaning Congress. The facilitators of the SLT lecture stumbled through the night with a combination of sporadic seriousness »

GRAVER: Lucretius at Yale

January 12, 2012 • 7
On its website, the Yale Admissions Department promises “education and enlightenment” along with a commitment “to the idea of a liberal arts education.” When a Yale student can receive a degree with a humanities experience consisting only of “Vikings” and “The Beatles, Dylan and the 60s,” what Yale claims to offer is actually a choice »

GRAVER: Don’t Ban the Box

October 24, 2011 • 30
The juxtaposition of Yale and New Haven poses troubling contrasts. Often just a few blocks separate immense wealth from destitute poverty, boundless opportunity from institutionalized plight, the American dream from the dark shadows that still plague our nation. Yalies ought to be sincerely moved by this, and almost all of us are. Nevertheless, un-tempered and »

GRAVER: Rooting the humanities in right

October 18, 2011 • 9
In “Finding the right meaning,” (Oct. 13), Peter Gayed embodies a dangerous intellectual tradition that regrettably has grown to define American higher education. Gayed puts forth that we resist “the temptation to privilege … interpretive methods over others,” in order to produce a more “considerate” mind. Gayed rejects professor Howard Bloch’s assertion that “the right »