Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Hell of A Field Trip

CNN reports that a group of liberal arts students from Randolph College in Lynchburg, Virginia took a field trip to a brothel outside of Las Vegas, capping a course on American consumption and "the ideas that consume us." Hmmm.

Some interesting pieces from the story:

--The brothel tour was a natural fit for a class that tells students "don't just study America -- live it."

Yeah baby.

--This year's focus on Nevada started with a professor's interest in water rights and conservation. It grew to include discussions of the wedding and entertainment industries and, inevitably, prostitution.

Of course it did. With plenty of 'Web-based research.'

--As part of their research, students were assigned "The Beauty Myth," by feminist author Naomi Wolf, "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas," by Hunter S. Thompson, and a "20/20" episode on prostitution with Diane Sawyer, among other research.

Yes, and PLENTY more 'Web-based research.'

--After a tour and time to mingle, the students packed up gift bags containing a menu of services, a Chicken Ranch key chain and a brochure.

...and a group discount.

Where was this innovative thinking around field trips at MY college?


VoxMoose said...

Hmmm... interesting. Keep in mind that Randolph is a women's college so it isn't like you have some kind of General Education all-Fraternity basket weaving course going out to the Vegas Chicken Ranch...

Still, definitely a unique university experience. No doubt public schools and private religious schools might have a harder time justifying such a cultural adventure to their respective funding sources...

Barbara(aka Layla) said...

Oh, didn't know that was a woman's college as I read the article - outs a whole new spin on it.

I know boys just wanna have fun...but glamorizing prostitution has a lot of negative affects on our society, which is really messed up as it is.

With that said, I have worked with prostitutes that have been raped on the job (sounds like an oxy moron) and its pretty sad. I work with other rape victims too but my heart goes out to those girls the most. Sorry...I better get off my soapbox this is your blog not mine!

VoxMoose said...

barbara, you raise a very good point and I agree. I actually do think that an experience as described in the article, if approached responsibly, could be quite valuable as part of a strong liberal arts education.

Also, I stand corrected: Randolph admitted its first male students into the freshman class just last year (there are only 60 men out of 715 total students at the university, but those 60 were about 1/3 of the incoming class).