Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Shakespeare in Park

The Two Cultures (with apologies to
Gary Hawkin’s and his 2 Economies)

On 7 May 1959, C.P Snow delivered an influential
Rede Lecture called The Two Cultures, which
provoked "widespread and heated debate".[1]

Subsequently published as The Two Cultures
and the Scientific Revolution, the lecture argued
that the breakdown of communication between
the "two cultures" of modern society
— the sciences and the humanities
was a major hindrance to solving the world's

In particular, Snow argues that the quality of
education in the world is on the decline. For
example, many scientists have never read
Charles Dickens, but artistic intellectuals are
equally non-conversant with science. (Wiki)

My colleague Ron Bashford was commiserating
yesterday over the fact that Shakespeare has been
dropped from testing in the United Kingdom,
pretty much getting left off the curriculum.

Same old no-more-money-for-band-these-days
of-economic-uncertainty as it always was.. The
flaw in the ointment that’s always there doesn’t
get exposed until things get rough & the tough
get going.

Shakespeare in the park la de da. No one
understands what’s going on like going to
church in Latin, but it’s nice to make an

Snow collapses Arts with HUMANITIES
and we do too—our Fine Arts & Humanities
division. Are they compatible?

Relate-able, yes—if the distinction is turned up
and sustained.

A triad (say):

3 radically incommensurate Ways of Knowing. .
3 radically different “pedagogies”—Ways of Learning.
Have members of each realm dress distinctively—the
language of each be almost incomprehensible to the
other two. Let them eat in separate sections of Gladfelter.

The Department of Education might be expected to
serve as liaison inter-mediator, interlocutor, translator,
interpreter—sustainer of Difference and

Here now: it’s all one culture. Totalitarian.
Call it the Culture of THE COURSE: the
great Unifier & Difference-Obliterate-er: its
structure overrides & collapses Shakespeare
& Organic Chemistry & Psychology of Creativity
& Gender & Intro to 5 String Banjo, Peace Studies
and Math for Liberal Arts. All COURSES

Take a Course Inn

Got a paper on Hawthorne due Monday. Got a
paper on the Red Army. My paper on Dickens is
due Saturday, damnit. Huh? —lab report Wed.
Poster presentation Tuesday. Quiz every day to
make sure I read the assignment. Crank it out.
Turn it in. What’d you get? What’d YOU get?


Course-Structure is what we learn and teach:
the not-so-deep generative grammar of hire
education, study skills & time management.

One culture: syllabi-driven, quiz & exam reinforced,
paper & presentation & poster elaborated, contact-time,
credit-bearing, finished product validating one size fits
all—no matter the subject matter, plenty more where
that comes from:. all the same–old same-old while
diversity of content occludes the Grammar Which
Over Rules. A cover up of identity under the
guise of difference.

Like most country & western songs plus early
rock & roll: all generated by the same 3 chord

Like, I said. . We can argue.

Experts on Course.
Not a 2-culture problem.
A 1-culture problem.
Poor old Will: nilled
when times get

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