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Culturebox: It's Not the Job Market

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It's Not the Job Market
The three real reasons why Americans are more anxious than ever before.
By Taylor Clark
Posted Monday, Jan. 31, 2011, at 4:53 PM ET

Anxious student.When a team of UCLA researchers released its latest annual report on the mindset of America's university students last week, one finding screamed out for red-alert media attention: Our college kids are more stressed out and anxious than ever before. In the researchers' surveys of more than 200,000 incoming freshmen, students reported all-time lows in overall mental health and emotional stability, and this news sent the media on a high-strung spree of its own. ABC World News ran footage of harried-looking teenagers rushing around campus, Time wondered "Why Are College Students Reporting Record High Levels of Stress?," and the New York Times story on the report vaulted to the top of the paper's most-e-mailed list.

The culprit for this soaring stress, the stories unanimously declared, is the horrendous job market--a thoroughly lame explanation. I don't know about your college experience, but when I got to school a dozen years ago, my classmates spent about as much time pondering the future "job market" as they spent leafing through calculus textbooks for fun. These news stories have missed the truth because they've overlooked one crucial fact: Students are becoming more anxious because, for many years now, we've all been growing more anxious. This isn't just a campus issue. It's an American issue.

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Taylor Clark is a writer based in Portland. His new book, Nerve: Poise Under Pressure, Serenity Under Stress, and the Brave New Science of Fear and Cool, will be published in March.

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What Happened to Judas? -- February 1, 2011

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Faith and The Church

What Happened to Judas?
Ray Pritchard
Judas does us a favor if his story causes us to rethink our basic commitment to Christ by asking, "Lord, is it I?"
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Shame On You: Is It Ever Right for Children To Feel Shame?
Sarah Hamaker
Because shame has been shoved aside in parenting discussions, parents might wonder if it is ever good for a child to feel shame. Parenting experts weigh in on the topic with a Christian perspective.
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The Tiger Mother In Us
Helen Lee
By now, you may have heard about the infamous Wall Street Journal article entitled "Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior," based on Amy Chua's new book, The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. I confess to having some Chua-likeness in me...
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Karen Kunkel
Why choose homeschooling? Karen Kunkel shares ten reasons.
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Monsters Stresses Somber Over Scary
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Although it could have resulted in a unique hybrid of different styles, Monsters is unique more for its failure to generate any well-earned emotions -- or thrills. Better to rent District 9, Cloverfield or The Host, which work much better on their own terms, than to try to make do with this.
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Director Matt Reeves has taken the original Swedish film, Let the Right One In, moved the setting to 1983 New Mexico, and has crafted a beautifully realized film about the uncertainties and loneliness of adolescence. It also explicitly raises the idea that evil is quite real -- although not always in the places we might think.
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