STILLPOINT Archive: last updated 05/30/2012

A Place for Invention

For most of us, the word “invention” triggers thoughts of clever devices—lightbulbs, for example. (And isn’t it interesting that a lightbulb above the head is visual shorthand for a flash of inspiration?) Yet there’s a deeper meaning embedded in the word’s history: the Latin inventio actually means “to find” or to come upon,” suggesting that discovery can happen slowly and methodically as well as warp-speed fast.

This issue’s cover story celebrates not just creativity, but Gordon College as a specific place where creativity and innovation thrive. Provost Mark Sargent writes, in the keynote essay, of Gordon’s distinctives as “themes we can trace in the living ground of the College—and in our memories.” Citing examples of Gordon-grown inventiveness as varied as the Center for Balance, Mobility and Wellness; the Jerusalem and Athens Forum; and the annual student-run Symposium, Sargent notes that “sustaining freedom to create and explore during the college years can bring childhood and adult life together, not simply for diversion and fun, but for moral agency and just relations.”

In companion essays, Academic Dean Dan Russ wrestles with the risks and blessings of academic freedom at Gordon, and David Hicks ’13 —triple majoring in philosophy, English and history—tells a tale of how studying at Gordon led to a re-invention of his youthful ideals.


The Last of the Rowanberrys—or, The "Living Ground" of Gordon College
Mark Sargent

Fear Not: Security, Risk and Academic Freedom
Dan Russ

What Happened to Changing the World?
David Hicks '13

Does this issue spark your own Gordon memories? We would love to . “We are,” as Sargent writes, “the sum total of our dreams, quarrels, false starts, persistent journeys, and the experiences and memories that still shape the way we think about teaching, learning and faith.”

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