Patricia Dixon

Patricia Dixon, Retired Professor, Music

Are you reading anything that’s giving you insight or useful and usable distraction at this point?

I am reading “A Supreme Question A Comparison of Religion and Science on the Meaning of God” by Lee Richey. I am enjoying this book so much because I didn’t know that one of my classmates at UNCSA, Lee Richey, was also a writer. Lee is a cellist, educator, conductor, and writer, who tackles big questions with a deep understanding of how people arrive at conclusions about the Divine. His inquisitiveness is refreshing and much needed in a world where assumptions and presumptions follow a careless, not careful, methodology. His eloquence on the subject is reflected in the clarity of his writing. His personal experiences add to the topic he is investigating, with generosity and humor, and also with a kind heart that reflects his love and respect for humans, science and religion.

How about music? Films?

As a musician, I always find comfort in the music of Brazil and Argentina, composers of the Bossa Nova like Carlos Antonio Jobim, and the New Tango, Astor Piazzolla. My favorite CD is “Obrigado Brazil” with Yo Yo Ma playing with a great troop of fabulous musicians from Brazil.

What is the best website, twitter feed, or other source of information, humor, insight, or distraction that you’ve found lately?

I don’t seek distraction in any websites; I rather live in the present close to what I have around me.

What do you miss the most about being on campus?

The students, the camaraderie of colleagues, and my meditation group.

The least?

Probably the technology, that seems to take so much time from living in real life.

What research, scholarship, or academic meetings have you had to cancel or miss?

Since I am a retired Professor who is teaching a Freshman Seminar this Spring, I was affected by the shutdown of classes, and had to reassess how I would teach my course, “Reflections on the American Dream.”

Are you rescheduling any of the above, or . . . ?

No rescheduling only keeping my students engaged in our topic and giving assignments that lead to reflection, contemplation, assessment of the experience we are all living, and keeping them engaged in what has turned out to be an American Nightmare.

What’s been the biggest challenge about working at home?

No challenges, I love my home and the choice of stopping when I want to rest or do something creative.

Picked up any new skills or hobbies, or revisited any old ones? (Zoom doesn’t count as a skill)

I have an Art studio at home so it is easy for me to dedicate time to my first love now that I am retired. I have been having fun experimenting with new techniques and media, as I always have, and meeting with other artists to share the creation process and get feedback. It has been difficult after the shutdown, but we have managed to send each other images and share thoughts, through email. I did a show in February, a series on fifteen pieces based on mushrooms that I found in the woods.

Complete the following: “I can’t wait for summer, because then . . .”

I will continue to create, read, go for walks, and entertain myself in taking each day as it is….just staying in the present.

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