Wednesday, August 8, 2007

The Great Walk-Out of the Philosophers

Pedagogy for the Obsessed

Education (idios: the personal, private)

Singular learning: cultivating one’s interior
human natural patterns & directional
navigational algorithms so as to correspond
with one’s singular personal experience so
as to optimize one’s idiocy in theprocess of
becoming dr, lawyer, banker, sawyer, crook,
candlestick maker, wall street baker, stock
car racer, missionary among the cannibals.

Edification: (socios: the common sense)

Building a shared edifice, structure, temple,
tower, community communion, constructing
a common play ground, courtyard, homeland,
place for trade & exchange communication,
conversation, research & development, sport
and entertainment, culture and civilization

Do not collapse, conflate,
or confuse these 2 "eds",
please. They are hostile
sets of values. Put them
in the same room and watch.
Might as well tie the tails of
2 cats together, toss them
over a clothesline & expect
them to Just Get Along:
global warning issues on
the one hand, say, & on the
other my my achy breaky
heart, leaking basement,
delinquent daughter &
stuff like that..

The Great Walk-Out of the Philosophers

George Mead, a leading pragmatist & head of
the department of philosophy (U. of Chicago),
quit in disgust at Robert Maynard Hutchins’
arbitrary appointment of Mortimer Adler in
1930. With him went two other philosophers.

This historic occasion became known as the
great walkout of the philosophers. It left the
department in a crippled condition from
which it did not recover for years.

Mortimer Adler had written a book (Dialectic)
which Hutchinson described as proving “there
was nothing true, and that you could have a lot
of fun seeing how many consistent universes
of discourses you could construct to talk about
them in.”

“As the youngest college president in America,
[Hutchins] was great publicity. Above all, he
had a reputation as a money-getter… [his] were
strange speeches. For one thing, they contained
none of the platitudes and clichés that normally
grace the lectures of college presidents. He told
a graduation class that they were nearer to truth
now than they would ever be again…told students
that the purpose of the university was to unsettle
their minds. He told science departments that they
were too concerned with fact finding and not
enough concerned with ideas. He maintained that
the world was bewildered because it had forgotten
how to read and think. He proposed a return to
philosophy.” (Martin Gardner, The Night is Large)

But then the philosophy department
walked out on him. Damnit.
Ludic! Ludicrous!
Inner Play. Inter Play. As opposed to?
What word stands-for the opposite of play?

Play of mind, play of light, playing the market,
horses, frost heaves, expansion joints, margins
of error, cracks, gaps, tolerances, give, give &
take, sport, disport, hop, skip, jump, mutations,
discontinuities, leaps & levels of play.

Put IT in Play: Play & Be Played.
What would be the opposite? A word.
An image for NOT in play,out of the game:
deluded, under illusion praying for disillusionmental
studies & leadership programs maybe: to be shifted,
willingly or not, happily or not-so, from being out-of-it
to being in it, in-game: lusory; in play: ludic. A
consummation devoutly to be desired?

“Mathematical patterns are pure, timeless concepts
uncontaminated by reality, yet the outside world
is so structured that these patterns in the mind
apply to it with eerie accuracy. Nothing has more
radically altered human history than this uncanny,
to some extent inexplicable, interplay of pure math
and the structures of whatever is out there. The
interplay is responsible for all science and technology.”

Martin Gardner again:
sounds like he’s talking
about math, science, and
technology, about inner
and outer patterns, about
timeless concepts & reality
and the nature of relationships
between them; but he’s not.

He’s talking about players in play —
play between playful and not:
play between in-game &
out-of-it: oops ooo la la
damn ha ouch er ah
yes mmm yep o
noooo what
the… what
the hey…

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