Re: Beyond these walls...

Bob King (kingbx@HAMLET.UNCG.EDU)
Sat, 28 Sep 1996 07:40:12 -0400

On Sat, 28 Sep 1996, Eric Crump wrote:
> I don't know where all this talk about 'taking courses' came
> from. Courses? Take? We gotta work on our terminology (not to mention the
> shape of our learning environments!)

Looking for this terminology is really fun, I think. Areas like landscape
architecture, urban planning, complexity theory, systems theory, poetry,
music -- maybe all of these and other areas, too, become sources once
we move out, beyond the walls, of word-pictures which were formed in a
context (mass-industry or whatever else it might be called) which no
longer applies. In John Shotter's book _Conversational Realities_ he
quotes Wittgenstein:

"A picture held us captive. And we could not get outside it, for it lay
in our language and language seemed to repeat it to us inexorably."

As for the shape of learning environments, when I think of that community
that is fully wired and ask what they need from the role of "teacher" -- I
have a hard time imagining they need much of anything from that role
because it's a "broadcast" term to start with, tied to the
one-to-many logic of mass-industry (I'm thinking or painting here, in
part, with terms George Gilder uses in his book _Life After Television_.

Supposing what's being talked about here as the current
project is Cyberjournal becoming a "school" -- what's the next step?
Whatever it is, somehow there's a part of me that doesn't want to see it!
I'm wondering if we should all (projecting completely here from my own
circumstances -- what else is new :) make a living trying to help others
do computer work and leave the Net alone for frolic rather than
enterprise. Maybe there's plenty of work left to do to simply help others
to get online, although I do see the role that you play as an important
one, whether you call it a ringmaster or a headmaster/webmaster. I'd be
interested to know how your role "emerged" (painting w/ complexity terms
here)? As an organizational model, the well managed website does seem to
me to be the good school of the next era, but, as I said, I have some
misgivings -- not that I'm able to articulate them tho. . .