Saturday, June 7, 2014

Theory / Practice / Performance (These 3 )'

When they came for the guitars,
I stood silent,  saying

Liberal Art Exam

A couple years ago in an early morning class
we were questioning & exposing everything:
definitions, somewhat-hidden assumptions,
controlling metaphors, the role of contradiction
& paradox, pushing analogies beyond their
intent, heightening distinctions between
description and  prescription, diagnosis and
value,  and round  and round we went, down
and down we went, loving the spin we were
in;  and I said: look  don’t be trying this in them
other classes: this is context-specific practice
not to  be exercised anywhere, or if you don’t
believe me go ahead try it in your next class,
I dare you: throw the converse actional
monkey wrench and see what happens.

Well, one kid did & the prof exploded,
appropriately took me to task as instigator
and abandoned class.  The student showed
up in my office a few minutes later, quite
disturbed and accusing me of setting him up.

          Now here’s the question:  

Was that a terrible  thing to have done?
Awful? Was that a terrific thing to have  done?
Awesome? Shameful?  Admirable?  On my part?
The student’s part?

(That =  disruption by challenging authority,
protocol, assumption, definition, controlling
metaphor etc. etc etc.)

Explain your answer.  And of course demonstrate

your critical thinking because this is at the heart
of the crucial difference between Liberal Art
education on the one hand and, on the other hand:
The Liberal Arts—them majors and minors and
poster & capstone events..

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