Interdisciplinearity LO22786

tabeles (
Sat, 02 Oct 1999 15:17:14 -0400

Replying to LO22780 --


Let me try to give one more example and then my concerns and thoughts
regarding the issues- and then, as they say on talk shows, I'll take the
response off line.

Many years ago, nursing used to be a 3 year applied degree. Later programs
went to a 4 year BSor BA degree. Those with just 3 years could not
progress unless they obtained the missing, non-nursing credits which
somehow magically made them fit to move into management. Today, the basic
RN is a two year associates degree from a community college or vocational
school- better technical prep, less non-tech stuff- more able to be hired,
at lower wages but with the same duties. Even less of an opportunity to
rise out of praxis and into higher pay and more responsibility without
that good old BA with its non-nursing courses.

Now, I might, if really pushed, be inclined to agree with you about the
liberal studies courses and whether or not these make a difference when
working either on the "line" or at a "desk" in the nursing profession and
I could make a strong case, as you have, for better technical focus and
less of this liberal studies stuff. But industry is setting the standards-
i am just observing here, the same as with engineers- somewhere in the
bowels of these industries, there is a little gremlin which requires the
undefined benefit of these non-professional skill sets. And, I would note
that there is a shizophrenia in these professions which argues both sides
of this position and not quite able to put the issue to rest with as much
conviction as you have so done.

I would also point out the success of the concept of Earl Shorris and his
philosophy for the disenfranchised. Somehow, these persons have accepted
the pain of learning liberal studies instead of the knowledge or skill
sets which will lead to immediate employment even though the programs do
not pay, profer no fiscal incentives or rewards for completing the
programs. What drives humans at both ends of the fiscal spectrum to seek
food for the mind with almost the same passion as food for the flesh?
-where the former has no guarantee of leading to the latter as directly as
a course in C++ or some such skill set?

Much that makes us human does not readily yield to a logical and rational
argument. Humans have many sides which can not be digested, disaggregated
and reduced to a scientific explanation. And one can not deny it because
it doesn't currently fit within the western rational paradigm. Because it
can not be so defined, can it be denied?

Not even decisions on issues which fall within the domain of science can
be agreed upon, even by scientists and not all decisions can be reduced to
clear scientific solutions, inspite of our friend Sherlock Holmes. In the
movie Zorba the Greek there is a needless (from a rational perspective)
killing. Zorba asks the scholar as to the use of all his "damn" books if
they can't explain why this occurred. The scholar, in great pain, says
that the books tell about men who suffer because they can't find an answer
to these questions.

Star Trek, has a modern parable about these issues in the subtheme which
involves the "Borg"

You seem to be seeking the boundaries of the set which, when narrowed or
expanded, as in the judicial domain, can either allow or forbid the
inclusion or exclusion of these ideas. This has not become an exchange
regarding the merits of the subject matter but a discussion about the
playing field and the rules of conduct. As in a dual, a sport or even
science or war, what is allowed (or makes sense) depends on the rules of
the game as Lewis Carroll has so eloquently pointed out in several
instances in both Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass- for
example the oft quoted Humpty Dumpty.

And this is what I have argued is one of the critical issues regarding
"learning organizations". These exist as viable structures within a set of
rules, like the persona, M Valdemer in Poe's story with the same name.
Change the game and the persona, body and soul disintegrate. Learning
organizations exist by definition and not universal laws of human nature
or scientific principles. we are not discovering some "truth" about
organizations like scientists discover the periodic properties of atoms
(an interesting and useful construct, in and of itself, incidentally)-
And, interestingly enough, the business publishers are hoping that this
never occurs as they churn out industrial grade self help materials.




tabeles <>

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