Re: easy authenticity (fwd)

Eric Crump (wleric@SHOWME.MISSOURI.EDU)
Mon, 19 Aug 1996 10:37:13 -0500


Actually, I've been trying to think of how to take this conversation in a
different direction & you and Tari and Cliff Stoll are giving me ideas. Tari
suggested we have a TCafe to talk about *how this stuff* (the open system
classroom) actually looks and works. Get to the details, the evidence. Stop
merely taking stances and blowing smoke (which is what I tend to do, I know,
and will keep doing unless I find a way to move out of that rut). So next
week's Cafe will be a chance to get at things from a different angle.

I'm just starting to read Silicon Snakeoil. Fascinating. It occurred to
me after the first few pages that Stoll is actually engaging in the same
*kind* of rhetoric that his constructed opponents do: hype. His hype is
the flip side of the technoUtopian hype, but it's hype nevertheless. It
brings to mind the role of hype as a key component of the rhetoric of
change, and I'd like to take a closer look at why hype flourishes during
technocultural transformative times, what role it plays in the transition.

And you object to *apparent* disregard I show for bureaucratic and
political complexities. I'm immersed in those complexities. My stance
toward them is not taken lightly nor is my style of expressing that
stance. But this is a specific situation within *our* community that
reflects what's happening on a broad scale in our culture. Negroponte vs
Stoll, Barlow vs Postman, Lanham vs Tuman, Crump vs Galin? Lots of
oppositions out there. Oppositions are going to happen. But I'm with you
on one thing. There's always more to the story that the oppositions
portray. Maybe Crump & Galin can do a better job than the others at
uncovering and unraveling the complex threads of discourse at play in
field of technorhetoric these days.

I'm game.

Your new project will be one of the venues to do this. I'll participate.
And I've got a few ideas for others ways to get at it. We'll work
together, eh? See what we can stir up.

--Eric Crump