Is Gratitude Selfish?

As parents tasked with civilizing three very young children, my wife and I make a daily effort to instill in them an abiding sense of gratitude. We consider it a virtue critical to fashioning their character, particularly as 21st century middle-class Americans, who are materially more blessed than probably 99% of all humans who have … Continued


‘Cheers’ Actor: Bring Back Shop Class to Teach Self-Reliance

There was a time, before college became accessible to all and the computer revolution transformed our economy, when all American schoolboys were required to take shop class (the girls took home ec.). But today, “shop class is dead,” declares Forbes, “and so are the potential tradespeople that would be born out of that early exposure … Continued


Your Defining Decade: A 20s Back-to-School Primer

It’s been a rough summer for the everyone-gets-a-trophy generation. English teacher David McCullough, Jr. told the graduating class at Wellsley High School that they weren’t special or exceptional, and so many people resonated with his tough-love approach that the speech went viral, garnering nearly two million views on YouTube and landing him a book deal … Continued

Books, Culture

Was Helen Gurley Brown really a Cosmo Girl?

In 1953 Hugh Hefner’s Playboy offered single men a glamorous life of escape and fantasy. Fast cars, beautiful women, and the newest styles were all the college man needed to be a status symbol on campus. Twelve years later, Helen Gurley Brown offered women similar freedoms—sex outside marriage, racy clothes, and “girl power”—when she took … Continued