Students Interview Author Ellen Ruppel Shell
Meredith students in this fall’s Global Capitalism and Ethical Values course ended their semester with a unique opportunity to talk to the author of the book studied in the class.
Required reading for this honors colloquium was Ellen Ruppel Shell’s “Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture.” On November 24, class members interviewed the author about her book using Skype, which allows video conferencing via the internet.
Class member Krishna Chagarlamudi enjoyed the opportunity.
“This was a unique experience because students rarely get to communicate with the authors of books they read,” Chagarlamudi said. “It was a really good experience to have a chance to talk to her and hear what she had to say about the book as well as the answers she provided to the questions that some of the students asked her.”
Student Kaylan Fisher said members of the class had different questions concerning specific topics covered in the book and it allowed [the students] to work together to learn from each other and construct questions to learn from her.
Fisher asked Ruppel Shell how her own lifestyle had changed since she began the research for the book and since the book has been published.
“She told us that her lifestyle had been drastically changed from the way she shopped to the value she placed on material goods,” Fisher said. “In her book she talks about outlet stores and just how much of a sale stores really offer. Speaking to her two days before Thanksgiving, she told us to "Sleep in late on Black Friday. Go do something with your family like see a movie or go to a football game!" I thought this clearly showed her opinion of sales and outlet shopping.”
The interview with Ruppel Shell was part of the course’s investigation of globalization as an economic, political and cultural phenomenon. The course was taught by Assistant Professor of Religion and Philosophy Steven Benko.
Date Submitted: 2009-12-17