Notre Dame ReSources

Author: Dennis Brown and Cynthia Day

The following Notre Dame faculty are available for additional comment on these people and events in the news:

Valentine’s Day : The dating and mating patterns of would-be valentines have changed over the second half of this century, according to David M. Klein , associate professor of sociology at Notre Dame. “One of the major changes since the baby boom is that young adults now spend more time dating (11 years now, compared with 6-7 years previously) before they get married,” says Klein, who teaches at course titled Dating and Mating. “Because the time most people spend dating their eventual spouse has increased only slightly, if at all, I would infer that the major change we see is that people are dating others either longer ? or more of them ? before starting to date the one they end up marrying. My other tentative conclusion is that one of the most important changes in the last 50 years is that the pathways to marriage have become increasingly diverse. Therefore, the ‘average’ experience is less typical and less meaningful that is used to be. The rise in non-marital cohabitation supports this diversification trend, as does the fact that our divorce rate places more people in the marriage market a second, or even additional, times.” Professor Klein can be reached for further comment at *(219)-631-7616 or at
  • p. Olympics : The bribery scandal rocking the International Olympic Committee is a “blight on the world community,” says Rev. Oliver F. Williams, C.S.C. , associate professor of management and academic director of Notre Dame’s Center for Ethics and Religious Values in Business. “The silver lining is that there is enough concern to do something about it and set a better climate for the future.” *Father Williams can be reached for further comment at (219)-631-5761 or at
  • p. Impeachment : The only person responsible for the strange nature of the impeachment proceedings is President Clinton, says William O’Rourke, professor of English at Notre Dame, in an op-ed for the Chicago Sun-Times. Everyone else is following the “script,” he says, and behaving exactly as one might expect. “The House managers behave like the white, conservative males that they are. The Democrats in opposition have not acted strangely, as they continue to support their popular, second-term president, refusing to supply the two-thirds verdict needed to remove him. Given the players, the one who has not kept to the standard script is Clinton.” What makes his behavior aberrant, O’Rourke asserts, is that he hasn’t resigned as we would expect of a president “so totally exposed and humiliated.” According to O’Rourke, it’s a variant on the ‘60s notion: What if they gave a war and nobody came? It’s as if Clinton has reasoned it this way, says O’Rourke: "What if they make public personal conduct that would embarrass the dead, shame the living, and I don’t resign? What if they impeach me in the House and I don’t resign? What if they try me in the Senate and I don’t resign? It is the president’s own singular behavior that no one counted on. . . " Professor O’Rourke can be reached for further comment at (219) 631-7377. p. Social Security : President Clinton’s proposal in his State of the Union address to transfer general revenues to Social Security is a “great idea, and an idea a long time coming,” says Teresa Ghilarducci, associate professor of economics at Notre Dame. “Transferring the surplus avoids raising payroll taxes or cutting benefits. Unfortunately, the proposal to invest some of the surplus in the stock market, though it’s a side issue, has grabbed too much attention. The government already puts plenty of money in the stock market ? trillions of dollars in state, local and federal government employee pension plans, for example, as well as $20 billion from the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation ? and the rates of return are competitive. We also can get high rates by putting the surplus funds in higher yielding government bonds if the stock market idea bothers people. Overall, though, let’s not lose sight of the main step Clinton has taken. The president is exactly on target; Medicare and Social Security need extra money and we have it. There is no better use of the surplus.” *Professor Ghilarducci can be reached for further comment at (219)-631-7581 or at
  • p. Christians in the academy : Notre Dame historian James Turner writes in Commonweal magazine that Christians in higher education are beginning to solidify and publicize the role religious convictions play in their intellectual lives. While remaining faithful to their scholarly activities, these Christians “have helped to nurture in the academy a heightened sensitivity to Christian faith as a factor important in its own right,” writes Turner, director of Notre Dame’s Erasmus Institute. “They have hardly conquered the high citadels of academe, and they have a long way to go before becoming anything like a major presence in the universities, but they have made their presence felt.” *Professor Turner can be reached for additional comment at (219)-631-9346 or at
  • p. United Nations : Three faculty fellows in Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies contributed to the recently published book, “The Future of the United Nations System: Potential for the Twenty-first Century.” Raimo Vayrynen *Robert Johansen * , acting director of the institute and professor of government and international studies, contributed a paper on “Enhancing United Nations Peacekeeping.” George Lopez *For more information, contact the Kroc Institute at (219) 631-6970. * p. Notre Dame News *Paul Wilkes * has been appointed Visiting W. Harold and Martha Welch Professor of American Studies for the 1999 spring semester … Two professors in the Program of Liberal Studies, F. Clark Power and Stephen Fallon , have developed an innovative course on the Great Books exclusively for guests of the Center for the Homeless in South Bend. The participants receive college credits and attend Notre Dame at no charge … The University will dedicate its new academic center on Trafalgar Square in London Feb. 6 with a daylong series of events featuring a Mass at Westminster Cathedral and a dedication address by George Basil Cardinal Hume … Alexander Blachly , associate professor of music at Notre Dame and founding director of the internationally acclaimed New York ensemble Pomerium, has been nominated for a Grammy award for small ensemble for the groups album, “Creator of the Stars” … The motion picture, “Message in a Bottle,” based on the best-selling novel by 1988 Notre Dame graduate Nicholas Sparks , opens Feb. 12. It stars Kevin Costner, Robin Wright Penn and Paul Newman …

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