March 2, 2000
Vol. 19 No. 11

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    In the News

    One of the University’s admissions application essay options for potential students in the Class of 2004 generated some unique submissions. Two essays, written by Julia Reischel and Gregory Beam, were published in the Friday, Feb. 18 issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education. The essay option asked applicants to help the University create a television pilot proposal in the tradition of the school’s improvisational offshoot, the Second City comedy troupe. The pilot had to include a genre, a character and a prominent prop from proposed selections in each of those categories. For example, the proposed characters from which applicants had to choose were Godot, Enrico Fermi’s personal trainer, a starving investment banker or an evil clown.

    Amy Kass, Senior Lecturer in the Humanities, and Leon Kass, the Addie Clark Harding Professor on the Committee on Social Thought, continue to receive press coverage of the class on courtship and marriage they developed and are teaching this quarter. The course is based on their newly edited anthology, Wing to Wing, Oar to Oar: Readings on Courting and Marrying. The Kasses discussed courtship when they appeared on National Public Radio’s program Talk of the Nation Monday, Feb. 14. In its Sunday, Feb. 20 issue, the Los Angeles Times published an op-ed written by the Kasses on the topic of reviving courtship.

    Jerry Coyne, Professor in Ecology & Evolution, was quoted in a Los Angeles Times story that appeared in the Sunday, Feb. 20 issue. The story reported on a book written by two researchers in New Mexico and Colorado who argue that rape has evolutionary origins. An evolutionary scientist, Coyne disagrees with their conclusions. “It’s a dreadful book. The whole enterprise is not dispassionate and objective science but a heavy-handed and tendentious attempt to push their thesis and to make fun of sociology,” he said.

    The Christian Science Monitor quoted Gary Becker, Professor in Economics and Sociology, in a story about a congressional bill that would eliminate Social Security penalties that discourage people over 65 from working. “It’s a waste of skill and human capital [to penalize] people at 65 through 69 who are productive and want to work,” said Becker.

    The wealthiest television game show contestant in history is David Legler, an M.B.A. student in the University’s Graduate School of Business. Stories about Legler’s winnings on the NBC game show Twenty-One appeared in the Chicago Sun-Times Thursday, Feb. 17, and in the Chicago Tribune Wednesday, Feb. 16.

    Charles Lipson, Associate Professor in Political Science, appeared as a guest on the WTTW-Chicago program Chicago Tonight Monday, Feb. 21. Lipson discussed the presidential primary elections in Michigan and Arizona.

    A study conducted by Dr. Nicholas Christakis, Associate Professor in Medicine and Sociology, and Dr. Elizabeth Lamont, Research Fellow in the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program, was featured in a Friday, Feb. 18 story published by the Chicago Sun-Times. The study, which examined prognoses by physicians who referred patients to Chicago hospices, found that doctors predicted patients would live 5.3 times longer than they actually did.

    Don Lamb Jr., Professor in Astronomy & Astro-physics, was interviewed Tuesday, Feb. 8, about gamma-ray bursts on National Public Radio’s Soundprint, a weekly radio documentary that airs on public stations across the country.

    In an opinion piece written about the recent Fox TV broadcast of Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire? published Friday, Feb. 18, The Wall Street Journal cited a recent study on the negative effects of cohabitation by Linda Waite, Professor in Sociology.