Michael Forbes Wilcox

Author's posts

Alford: A Land Acknowledgment

A Land Acknowledgment As Alford’s Town Moderator, I took the occasion of our 2019 Annual Town Meeting on May 14 to introduce a new tradition. The idea did not originate with me; such land acknowledgments are becoming more widely used. I felt it would be an appropriate tribute to the indigenous people who cared for …

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Property One: The Mahican-Mohawk Trail

This post is a conglomeration of lecture notes, slides, and other information. I compiled all of this as part of my preparation for my OLLI course on Berkshire History, in which I talked about six different preserved properties that all have walking/hiking trails on them. An overview of the course can be found here. From …

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OLLI Nomination for Least Qualified Speaker

OLLI Spring 2019 Course TH104: A Walk Through Berkshire History Michael Forbes Wilcox is a Berkshire native, having been born in the House of Mercy in Pittsfield. His parents lived in Stockbridge, where he spent the first 17 years of his life. He currently resides in Alford, where he is the Town Moderator. Wilcox is …

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An OLLI Walk Through Berkshire History: Overview

Overview of the Course First, a little bit about myself, and what I hope to accomplish in this course my introduction, as given in the first class my email: mfw {at} mfw(.)us my blog: http://www.mfw.us/blog/ Then, a tribute to my Grandmother Wilcox, who instilled in me a love of history and its lore Next, a …

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There’s a Word for This

… and when I find it, I’ll put it here. [see the comments] Tom Waters, chairman of the Missouri Levee and Drainage District Association in a Washington Post article on Midwest flooding When a person’s last name lines up with their vocation or avocation.

Word of the Day: Usufruct

Caveat: I’m not an attorney. My interest in this legal term derives from research I’ve been conducting relating to my upcoming (April/May 2019) OLLI course on Berkshire history. Specifically, I’ve been reading a wonderful 1983 book, recommended to me by two different people; Changes in the Land, by William Cronon, who is now at the University …

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A Walk Through Berkshire History

A Walk Through Berkshire History An OLLI Course, Spring 2019 Kimball Farms, Lenox April 18 and 25, May 2, 9, 16, and 23  3:00 to 4:30 PM Here is a preliminary description of a lecture course I will give this Spring in Lenox. You can find registration information on my OLLI page. I’ll also be …

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The Only Thing Difficult to Predict

Jill Lapore does a brilliant take-down of a flurry of recent literature themed “The Robots are Coming!” in her recent (March 4, 2019) New Yorker piece The Robot Caravan. Lapore’s acerbic and erudite wit skewers the doomsayers and technophobes who see the apocalypse coming. Her argument could be summed up in one paragraph from the …

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The Four Kingdoms of Autism

I attended a lecture at Simon’s Rock College at which the presenter mentioned a 2013 post by former NIMH Director Thomas Insel, entitled The Four Kingdoms of Autism. I was not familiar with this description, and it seemed to me to be a useful way to think about how autism is viewed. Dr. Insel offers four different …

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Friendships

This past winter, I taught a course on autism for OLLI, our local (Berkshire) adult education outfit. Along the way, I discussed the theme of friendships. One of the overriding messages I was attempting to convey in the 6-lecture course was that autism is not a deficiency, but a difference. To illustrate this, I shared …

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