Replying to LO28456 --
Alan Cotterell <email@example.com> writes:
>I suggest there is significant risk in the association
>between science and authoritarianism, this has already
>been proven once. Bring on participation.
Greetings dear Alan,
This made me think -- show me any authority without the risk of
authorianism and heaven will be showed to me. It is better to bear in mind
that we live on earth rather than in heaven.
In chapter 6 of his book "The force of Knoweldge" John Ziman discusses
"Authority and Influence". He here thinks about the "authority of the
intellectual" obtained through scientific credentials. He then traces the
influence of these "intellectual authorities" in academy as well as other
walks of society like industry and government. But strangely enough, he
does not discuss the risks which go with "intellectual authority".
I have been teaching science for the greater part of my life. I have tried
to move away from rote learning into authentic learning for a greater part
of my life. I have found that it is easy to impress a rote learner with an
"intellectual authority" to accept information as the holy grail. But to
use an "intellectual authority" in authentic learning poses a great risk.
It diminishes spontaneous (self) creating which is the key to authentic
I am wondering about that organisation and how much the manuals whom its
members are using prescriptively is not responsible for its decline. It
reminds me of the Greek word "leitourgia" derived from "leitos"=public and
"ergos"=work. The "leitourgia" refered to those manuals prescribing
public("leitos") and work ("ergos). The purpose of "leitourgia" is to make
any public work a ritual. The English word liturgy is derived from the
Greek word "leitourgia". The word liturgy is used in the religious circles
to the refer to manuals prescribing public worship.
I think that any organisation with too much "liturgy" is as much at risk
as one with no "liturgy". The risk develops when a "liturgy" is applied to
the very learning within that organisation. The "dassein"=alone dimension
of learning is "learning individuals" while the "mitsein"=together
dimension is "learning teams". What a "liturgy" does is to suppress the
"second loop" of learning -- to learn how to learn. Rituals (like saluting
or knocking) have their place in any organisation, but rituals cannot
replace "double loop" learning.
With care and best wishes
At de Lange <firstname.lastname@example.org> Snailmail: A M de Lange Gold Fields Computer Centre Faculty of Science - University of Pretoria Pretoria 0001 - Rep of South Africa
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