David L. Hildebrand, Ph.D., Philosophy

The Crucible: Because Great Ideas Come to Life with Heat

The Crucible: Because Great Ideas Come to Life With Heat








What This Is:

The Crucible is a Weekly Intellectual Salon for University of Colorado Denver Faculty who want to discuss ideas, share research, and explore new territory, especially in the Humanities. Meetings could adopt a theme consonant with a particular interdisciplinary group (e.g. WGST, Social Justice), or could simply be an opportunity for an individual to raise an issue for extended discussion.

While the setting and mood will be informal, there will be an agenda (e.g. a reading or presentation) for each gathering and an expectation of reasonably focused conversation.

Amenities: a coffee/tea service will be provided

wisdom juice pastries 

Meeting Frequency: Weekly

Number of participants: 10-14 (target)

Location: Faculty Club, 9th St. Park


Possible Activities:

Short paper presentations—or perhaps, working through focused handouts.

Powerpoint presentations

Choosing a book or article to review together

Guest speakers


Possible (sample) topics for Discussion:

  • The Idea Which has [You] Fired Up Right Now is [short talk on your present passion]

  • How should the liberal arts be defended?

  • Theory and/or Practice: The tension between thinking and doing in Academic Disciplines. 

  • How Should Faculty Teach Issues of Social Justice?

  • Is there such a thing as a “woman’s voice” in writing?

  • Is “Online Education” an oxymoron? Will the BOT replace the PhD?

  • What is “Scientific Literacy” and Who Should Teach it?

  • Are Universities Democratic? Shared Governance in Ideology and in Practice.

  • Should Professors in the Humanities Encourage Undergraduates to Go to Graduate School?

  • How Should One Define “Diversity, ” Today?

  • How Should Universities Deal with the Poorly Validated but Richly Financed “Research” of Think Tanks?

  • To What Degree Should Universities Challenge Conventional Wisdom? 

Possible Outcomes:

Video clips; podcasts of more formal presentations

Position papers


Blog posts


This is currently a proposal in process. Ideas most welcome. -- David



Last updated Jul 16, 2011 05:20:PM