Columbia Tuition Scaring Prospects Away

Tuition for Columbia’s arts degree programs has risen so high, the school is losing prospects to other universities. “Last month, several hundred graduate students in the school’s visual arts, acting, writing and filmmaking programs marched across campus, protesting a decision to raise tuition to $33,052, from $31,240, in the fall. The school plans to continue increasing tuition 5.8 percent annually.”

Doctorow Cheered, Booed For Anti-Bush Commencement Speech

Writer E.L. Doctorow gave a commencement speech at Hofstra University over the weekend, and was extremely critical of George Bush. “Apparently, some folks at the university ceremony liked what Doctorow had to say and cheered. But others said his comments were inappropriately political. The vocal outrage grew so vociferous that at one point Hofstra President Stuart Rabinowitz stepped in and asked the crowd to quiet down so Doctorow could continue.”

Afghanistan Sings Again

Music is starting to flow again in Afghanistan. “A revolutionary musical revival is under way here after six years during which all music, even humming on the streets, was forbidden. The lively scene on Kabul’s version of New Orleans’ Bourbon Street is one indicator. Another is the birth of Radio Arman, a new station unlike anything Afghanistan has ever seen. ‘When you deprive someone of water for five days and then you finally give them some, you will see what the taste will be. That’s what music is to us Afghans’.”

Albee: I’m In Fashion, I’m Out…

From a New York point of view, Edward Albee is solidly back. Yet, from his own perspective, he never went away. “You’re in fashion, you’re out of fashion. That comes and goes. I’ll be out of fashion again.’ He notes, however, that in the years the theater establishment regarded him as passe, he ‘was performed everywhere except in New York. I was still writing all the time. My output has always been pretty steady, a play every year and half’.”

Music Sales Up Sharply

Sales of music in the US are up 9 percent this year, and some recording execs are predicting a recovery in the global music business: “If this is the result of a combined formula of anti-piracy lawsuits knocking people off file-sharing sites and the massive adoption of legal services and a spike in CD sales then it could be good news for everyone.”

The Hardest Working Man In Academia?

Henry Louis Gates may be the “Hardest Working Man in Academia.” His latest book “The just-released African American Lives (Oxford University Press, $55, co-edited with Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham) brings the number of books Gates has edited or co-edited to 51. He has written or co-written another 12.” And he’s hard at work on another half dozen projects…