This episode we talk with Monte Bute, a backstage sociologist at Metropolitan State University. Last year, Monte was diagnosed with stage three pulmonary lymphoma. Rather than retreating quietly, however, Monte has turned his illness into a learning experience for students (he’s continued to teach) and into an opportunity to revisit some of the core questions of the human experience. We talk about the effect of Durkheim on sociology’s impoverished understanding of dying, and the ways in which literature and the humanities do a better job of grasping the existential realities of dying. Other topics include Monte’s Facebook page, his take on the Minnesota state shutdown, and why Monte has changed his opinion on Tuesdays with Morrie (following up on his discussion with John Hines).

Download Office Hours #30.