Should you choose your roommate?

It is so seldom that I agree with NYTimes columnist and noted anti-Catholic yet Catholic (Catholite) Maureen Dowd that I thought it worth posting an article of hers I read this morning that was spot on.
Dowd discusses new college roommate online matching programs. Like Dowd, when I went to college you simply got paired with someone. No one had a choice in the matter. The net effect was that you were exposed to a range of people, a range of groups and interests on campus, and to a random selection of personality and opinion. Learning to live with someone not of your choosing, indeed learning to flourish in that setting, was just part of the drill.
What is the downside of choosing? Dowd nails it:
“Choosing roommates who are mirror images may fit with our narcissistic and microtargeted society, but it retards creativity and social growth. This reluctance to mix it up also has been reflected in the lack of full-throated political and cultural debates on campuses (as opposed to ersatz debates on cable TV), replaced by a quiet P.C. acceptance of differing views or an obnoxious stereotyping of anyone different.”

About Kleiner

Associate Vice Provost and Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Utah State University. I teach across the curriculum, but am most interested in continental philosophy, ancient and medieval philosophy as well as Catholic thought, all of which might be summed up as an interest in the ressourcement tradition (returning in order to make progress). I also enjoy spending time thinking about liberal education and its ends.
This entry was posted in Education, Polis (politics, culture). Bookmark the permalink.

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