Jennifer Rapp, Seminar Chair
Jennifer Rapp taught in the core humanities program for undergraduates at Stanford University 2006-2009 and then at Deep Springs College 2009-2014, where she was the Robert Aird Chair in the Humanities. She has an MA from the University of Chicago Divinity School and a PhD from Stanford University. She decided to leave Deep Springs in 2014 in order to start her own venture, Self to Soul Education. The first phase of this venture is Jennifer Rapp Sojourns, through which she offers multi-dimensional courses in places set apart from the ordinary. In addition to her own venture in education, Jennifer continues to teach within both mainstream and alternative forums in higher education, most notably The Arete Project (summer 2014-5) and the Telluride Association’s TASP program (summer 2016).
Her commitment to teaching within unorthodox, innovative liberal arts settings is grounded in the ethos expressed by James Baldwin in The Fire Next Time, namely, that barring a door to someone’s social and spiritual ease is “hard and odd as it may sound, the most important thing that one human being can do for another.” For Jennifer, teaching in the liberal arts involves not only creating such disruptions but also developing students’ capacities for living from them.
For a glimpse into her approach to the relationship between reading, writing, and education see her book, Ordinary Oblivion and the Self Unmoored: Reading Plato’s Phaedrus and Writing the Soul (Fordham University Press, 2014). You can also get to know her writing and angle onto the world through her website, www.jennifer-rapp.com, and her free e-letters.
Tal Galton, Labor Coordinator
Tal Galton is an educator, a naturalist, a farmer and a father. Since 1999, his passion for alternative education has been focused on expanding the programs and honing the governance practices of Arthur Morgan School. He has house-parented, worked in the development office, led backpacking trips, taught a little bit of everything, run the farm program, and is now Co-Clerk and livestock manager. He lives in Celo Community in the timber-frame home that he and his wife, Jess, designed and built out of local trees. Tal likes to pick mushrooms, catch snakes, find interesting plants, hike in the Black Mountains, and run the local trails.
Poet and scholar Stefania Heim has degrees from Harvard (AB), Columbia University (MFA), and the CUNY Graduate Center (PhD). She is author of the poetry collection, A Table That Goes On for Miles (Switchback Books 2014) and her poems, essays, and translations have appeared widely, in publications including A Public Space, Aufgabe, Ghost Proposal, The Journal of Narrative Theory, and The Literary Review. Both her academic and creative work share the conviction that poetry — more than a set of constraints and particular set of practices — is a form of knowledge and way of encountering the world. She is a Poetry Editor at Boston Review, a founding editor of CIRCUMFERENCE: Poetry in Translation, and has taught at Columbia University, Deep Springs College, Duke University, Hunter College, and Meredith College.
Heidi Hutner teaches and writes about environmental literature and film, environmental justice, ecofeminism, ecocriticism, and media. Her courses are interdisciplinary and, in addition to traditional academic study, often include hands-on experiential work such as hiking, environmental activism, art, and creative writing. Dr. Hutner’s journey into environmentalism and sustainability began through the study of the links between toxic pollution and disease in the writing of Rachel Carson and Sandra Steingraber. This led to her teaching courses and writing about toxics and cancer in literature and film. More recently, Dr. Hutner’s work expanded to include a larger range of environmental issues as they are represented in literature, film and other media, such as global warming and climate change, radioactive nuclear pollution, food/agricultural and animal rights, and general sustainability/energy issues. Dr. Hutner directs the Sustainability Studies Program and the Environmental Humanities Major at Stony Brook University.