Neil Postman cytaty

1  0

Neil Postman

Data urodzenia: 8. Marzec 1931
Data zgonu: 5. Październik 2003

Reklama

Neil Postman – amerykański filozof, medioznawca, krytyk kultury, profesor w Katedrze Kultury i Komunikacji Społecznej na Uniwersytecie Nowojorskim.

Cytaty Neil Postman

„Technology always has unforeseen consequences, and it is not always clear, at the beginning, who or what will win, and who or what will lose.“

— Neil Postman
Context: The Benedictine monks who invented the mechanical clock in the 12th and 13th centuries believed that such a clock would provide a precise regularity to the seven periods of devotion... here is a great paradox: the clock was invented by men who wanted to devote themselves more rigorously to God; and it ended as the technology of greatest use to men who wished to devote themselves to the accumulation of money. Technology always has unforeseen consequences, and it is not always clear, at the beginning, who or what will win, and who or what will lose.... Gutenberg thought his invention would advance the cause of the Holy Roman See, whereas in fact, it turned out to bring a revolution which destroyed the monopoly of the Church.

Reklama

„All reading, in truth, is reading in a content area.“

— Neil Postman
Context: All reading, in truth, is reading in a content area. To read the phrase "the law of diminishing returns" or "the law of supply and demand" requires that you know how the word "law" is used in economics, for it does not mean what it does in the phrase "the law of inertia" (physics) or "Grimm's law" (linguistics) or "the law of the land" (political science) or "the law of survival of the fittest" (biology). To the question, "What does 'law' mean?" the answer must always be, "In what context?"

„About the last place any of us can expect to learn anything important about the realities we have to cope with in our wistful pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness is a classroom.“

— Neil Postman
Context: About the last place any of us can expect to learn anything important about the realities we have to cope with in our wistful pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness is a classroom. If we decided that schools must do whatever is necessary to help students to learn the concepts and skills relevant to the nuclear space age, we wouldn't spend much time sitting inside of small boxes inside of boxes — even with all the fancy hardware being developed to jazz up the Trivia contest. It's probably true that most of what we all know we didn't learn in school anyway. Moreover, developments in electronic information processing make the school as it presently exists unnecessary... the "new education." Its purpose is to produce people who can cope effectively with change. To date, none of the new "educational technology" has that as its purpose. Remember Santayana's line: Fanaticism consists of redoubling efforts after having forgotten one's aim. The developments in "educational technology" are intended to do all of the old school stuff better... but that's not the aim of the new education.

„Survival in a stable environment depends almost entirely on remembering the strategies for survival that have been developed in the past, and so the conservation and transmission of these becomes the primary mission of education. But, a paradoxical situation develops when change becomes the primary characteristic of the environment. Then the task turns inside out — survival in a rapidly changing environment depends almost entirely upon being able to identify which of the old concepts are relevant to the demands imposed by the new threats to survival, and which are not.“

— Neil Postman
Context: The BASIC FUNCTION of all education, even in the most traditional sense, is to increase the survival prospects of the group. If this function is fulfilled, the group survives. If not, it doesn't. There have been times when this function was not fulfilled, and groups (some of them we even call "civilizations") disappeared. Generally, this resulted from changes in the kind of threats the group faced. The threats changed, but the education did not, and so the group, in a way, "disappeared itself" (to use a phrase from Catch-22). The tendency seems to be for most "educational" systems, from patterns of training in "primitive" tribal societies to school systems in technological societies, to fall imperceptibly into a role devoted exclusively to the conservation of old ideas, concepts, attitudes, skills, and perceptions. This happens largely because of the unconsciously held belief that these old ways of thinking and doing are necessary to the survival of the group. …Survival in a stable environment depends almost entirely on remembering the strategies for survival that have been developed in the past, and so the conservation and transmission of these becomes the primary mission of education. But, a paradoxical situation develops when change becomes the primary characteristic of the environment. Then the task turns inside out — survival in a rapidly changing environment depends almost entirely upon being able to identify which of the old concepts are relevant to the demands imposed by the new threats to survival, and which are not. Then a new educational task becomes critical: getting the group to unlearn (to "forget") the irrelevant concepts as a prior condition of learning. What we are saying is that the "selective forgetting" is necessary for survival.

„Print, in even more revolutionary ways than writing, changed the very form of civilization.“

— Neil Postman
Context: Print, in even more revolutionary ways than writing, changed the very form of civilization.... the Protestant Revolution was contemporaneous with the invention of moving type.... the printing and distribution of millions of Bibles made possible a more personal religion, as the Word of God rested on each man's kitchen table. The book, by isolating the reader and his responses, tended to separate him from the powerful oral influences of his family, teacher, and priest. Print thus created a new conception of self as well as of self-interest. At the same time, the printing press provided the wide circulation necessary to create national literatures and intense pride in one's native language. Print thus promoted individualism on one hand and nationalism on the other.

„A new technology sometimes creates more than it destroys. Sometimes, it destroys more than it creates. But it is never one-sided.“

— Neil Postman
Context: A new technology sometimes creates more than it destroys. Sometimes, it destroys more than it creates. But it is never one-sided. The invention of the printing press is an excellent example. Printing fostered the modern idea of individuality but it destroyed the medieval sense of community and social integration. Printing created prose but made poetry into an exotic and elitist form of expression. Printing made modern science possible but transformed religious sensibility into an exercise in superstition. Printing assisted in the growth of the nation-state but, in so doing, made patriotism into a sordid if not a murderous emotion. Another way of saying this is that a new technology tends to favor some groups of people and harms other groups. School teachers, for example, will, in the long run, probably be made obsolete by television, as blacksmiths were made obsolete by the automobile, as balladeers were made obsolete by the printing press. Technological change, in other words, always results in winners and losers.

„Eliminate all restrictions that confine learners to sitting still in boxes inside of boxes.“

— Neil Postman
Context: If every college teacher taught his courses in the manner we have suggested, there would be no needs for a methods course. Every course would be a course in methods of learning and, therefore, in methods of teaching. For example, a "literature" course would be a course in the process of learning how to read. A history course would be a course in the process of learning how to do history. And so on. But this is the most farfetched possibility of all since college teachers, generally speaking, are more fixated on the Trivia game, than any group of teachers in the educational hierarchy. Thus we are left with the hope that, if methods courses could be redesigned to be model learning environments, the educational revolution might begin. In other words, it will begin as soon as there are enough young teachers who sufficiently despise the crippling environments they are employed to supervise to want to subvert them. The revolution will begin to be visible when such teachers take the following steps (many students who have been through the course we have described do not regard these as "impractical"): 1. Eliminate all conventional "tests" and "testing." 2. Eliminate all "courses." 3. Eliminate all "requirements." 4. Eliminate all full time administrators and administrations. 5. Eliminate all restrictions that confine learners to sitting still in boxes inside of boxes.... the conditions we want to eliminate... happen to be the sources of the most common obstacles to learning. We have largely trapped ourselves in our schools into expending almost all of our energies and resources in the direction of preserving patterns and procedures that make no sense even in their own terms. They simply do not produce the results that are claimed as their justification in the first place — quite the contrary. If it is practical to persist in subsidizing at an ever-increasing social cost a system which condemns our youth to ten or 12 or 16 years of servitude in a totalitarian environment ostensibly for the purpose of training them to be fully functioning, self-renewing citizens of democracy, then we are vulnerable to whatever criticisms that can be leveled.

Reklama

„Language education... may achieve what George Bernard Shaw asserted is the function of art.“

— Neil Postman
Context: It may come as a surprise to our technocrat philosophers, but people do not read, write, speak, or listen primarily for the purpose of achieving a test score. They use language in order to conduct their lives, and to control their lives, and to understand their lives. An improvement in one's language abilities is therefore... observed in changes in one's purposes, perceptions, and evaluations. Language education... may achieve what George Bernard Shaw asserted is the function of art. "Art," he said in Quintessence of Ibsenismn, "should refine our sense of character and conduct, of justice and sympathy, greatly heightening our self knowledge, self-control, precision of action and considerateness, and making us intolerant of baseness, cruelty, injustice, and intellectual superficialty and vulgarity." …For my purposes, if you replace the word "art" with the phrase "language education," you will have a precise statement of what I have been trying to say.

„Two opposing world-views — the technological and the traditional — coexisted in uneasy tension. The technological was the stronger, of course, but the traditional was there — still functional, still exerting influence...“

— Neil Postman
Context: Two opposing world-views — the technological and the traditional — coexisted in uneasy tension. The technological was the stronger, of course, but the traditional was there — still functional, still exerting influence... This is what we find documented not only in Mark Twain but in the poetry of Walt Whitman, the speeches of Abraham Lincoln, the prose of Thoreau, the philosophy of Emerson, the novels of Hawthorne and Melville, and, most vividly of all, in Alexis de Tocqueville's monumental Democracy in America. In a word, two distinct thought-worlds were rubbing against each other in nineteenth-century America.

„The relationship between information and the mechanisms for its control is fairly simple to describe: Technology increases the available supply of information. ...control mechanisms are strained...“

— Neil Postman
Context: The relationship between information and the mechanisms for its control is fairly simple to describe: Technology increases the available supply of information.... control mechanisms are strained... When additional control mechanisms are themselves technical, they in turn further increase the supply of information. When the supply of information is no longer controllable, a general breakdown in psychic tranquillity and social purpose occurs. Without defenses, people have no way of finding meaning in their experiences, lose their capacity to remember, and have difficulty imagining reasonable futures.

„There are many books that are mechanically faultless but which contain untrue, unclear, or even nonsensical ideas.“

— Neil Postman
Context: Of writing that is filled with mechanical and grammatical error, as compared with writing that conforms to the rules of standard edited English. Surely, we do not want to say that there is a necessary correlation between mechanical and editorial accuracy and intellectual substance. There are many books that are mechanically faultless but which contain untrue, unclear, or even nonsensical ideas. Carefully edited writing tells us, not that the writer speaks truly, but that he or she grasps... the manner in which knowledge is usually expressed. The most devastating argument against a paper that is marred by grammatical and rhetorical error is that the writer does not understand the subject.

Reklama

„Even when the problem of the access to technology is solved so that anyone who wishes can have access to technology, there still remains a problem.“

— Neil Postman
Context: Even when the problem of the access to technology is solved so that anyone who wishes can have access to technology, there still remains a problem. For example, just about anyone has access to a public library (at least in America). In that library we find the greatest, most profound, most illuminating literature that human beings have so far produced. Do most people read these books? Have you read Cervantes? Have you read the sonnets of Shakespeare? Have you read Hegel or Nietzsche? Their books are in the library, you have access to them, why have you not familiarized yourself with this literature? (Even if you have, I think you will agree that most people have not. Why?) "Neil Postman Ponders High Tech" at Online Newshour : Online Forum (17 January 1996)

„In the Middle Ages, there was a scarcity of information but its very scarcity made it both important and usable.“

— Neil Postman
Context: In the Middle Ages, there was a scarcity of information but its very scarcity made it both important and usable. This began to change, as everyone knows, in the late 15th century when a goldsmith named Gutenberg, from Mainz, converted an old wine press into a printing machine, and in so doing, created what we now call an information explosion.... Nothing could be more misleading than the idea that computer technology introduced the age of information. The printing press began that age, and we have not been free of it since.

„As one learns the language of a subject, one is also learning what the subject is.“

— Neil Postman
Context: As one learns the language of a subject, one is also learning what the subject is.... what we call a subject consists mostly, if not entirely, of its language. If you eliminate all the words of a subject, you have eliminated the subject.

„Very often children make declarative statements about things when they really mean only to elicit an informative response. In some cases, they do this because they have learned from adults that it is "better" to pretend that you know than to admit that you don't.“

— Neil Postman
Context: We can justify the list we will submit on several grounds. First, many of these questions have literally been asked by children and adolescents when they are permitted to respond freely to the challenge of "What's Worth Knowing?" Second, some of these questions are based on careful listening to students, even though they were not at the time asking questions. Very often children make declarative statements about things when they really mean only to elicit an informative response. In some cases, they do this because they have learned from adults that it is "better" to pretend that you know than to admit that you don't. (An old aphorism describing this process goes: Children enter school as question marks and leave as periods.) In other cases they do this because they do not know how to ask certain kinds of questions. In any event, a simple translation of their declarative utterances will sometimes produce a great variety of deeply felt questions.

Natępna
Dzisiejsze rocznice
Maurice Wilkins Fotografia
Maurice Wilkins
biochemik brytyjski, noblista 1916 - 2004
Mirosław Baka Fotografia
Mirosław Baka10
polski aktor 1963
Glenn Miller Fotografia
Glenn Miller2
amerykański muzyk jazzowy, puzonista, lider big bandu 1904 - 1944
Licio Gelli Fotografia
Licio Gelli
1919 - 2015
Następnych dzisiejszych rocznic
Podobni autorzy
Andrzej Flis2
polski antropolog i socjolog
Stanisław Ossowski2
polski socjolog
Jean Baudrillard Fotografia
Jean Baudrillard7
francuski socjolog i filozof kultury
Zygmunt Bauman Fotografia
Zygmunt Bauman54
polski socjolog, filozof, eseista
Andrzej Mencwel1
polski historyk i krytyk literatury i kultury polskiej, ...
Slavoj Žižek Fotografia
Slavoj Žižek61
słoweński socjolog, filozof, psychoanalityk i krytyk kul...
Jerzy Kmita1
filozof polski