Language Dilemma + A New Picture LO13915

Bill Hendry (
Tue, 10 Jun 1997 13:42:54 -0400 (EDT)

Replying to LO13895 --

I am reading, among other things, the Human Resource Development Research
Handbook edited by Richard Swanson and Elwood Holton, and sponsored by the
Academy of HRD and the ASTD. The chapter on the practical importance of
research asks the question "What is it that drives business and HRD into
predictably ignorant (atheoretical - practice without the guidance of
theory) decisions?" In addition to time pressures, the books gives the
example of a six minute video which promises to "...shatter people's
resistance to change."

Keeping LO from becoming a fad or worse - a bad name - is practicing
systems thinking, as Senge as said. Keep doing good work, contribute to
the Theory-Research-Development-Practice of the field, and don't worry
about the critics. Their system will seek its own balance!

On Mon, 9 Jun 1997, Richard C. Holloway wrote:

> The issues of language are very important. Philosophers have always been
> very deliberate in defining their terms, especially when they are
> expressing new ideas. Our culture is very engrained in superficial
> thinking, though, and pulp ideas abound in the HR, OD, LO, et al., fields.
> Each of these ideas is restated in new terms, copyrighted and, hopefully,
> income earned. It's sometimes difficult to hold another's attention long
> enough to define terms, nowadays.
> "According to Maturana, we can understand human consciousness only through
> language and the whole social context in which it is embedded. As its
> Latin root-- con-scire ('knowing together')--might indicate, consciousness
> is essentially a social phenomenon." (from Capra's "Web of Life") I
> introduced this quote, because we are all engaged in bringing forth a new
> world view with the evolution of thought concerning organizations,
> societies, principles, ethics and learning. Your use of Rilke's poem is
> very illustrative of this idea. Poesia, the act of creating, is at the
> heart of what many of us do as learners, actors and consultants.
> My visualization of the living organization is one of people who want to
> "know together" to create their organizational consciousness.



Bill Hendry, Training and OD Specialist, Hillsborough County, FL work email: | home (813) 276-2727 work phone, (813) 276-2197 fax

"Throughout the centuries there were men who took first steps down new roads armed with nothing but their own vision."

- From "The Fountainhead" by Ayn Rand

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