21 Matching Annotations
  1. Mar 2018
    1. When the bus with “£350 million a week” was going around the country, and when those who emerged from it, including the blonde bus conductor, told people, “We want to take power back from the European Union and Brussels”, no one said, “We want to take power back so we can give it to 109 Ministers or public authorities”. If they had said that, I rather fancy that the bus would not have received the generous welcome that it did on many occasions.
  2. May 2017
  3. Mar 2017
    1. expressing their inner lives, whether consciously or unconsciously, and she attempts to represent her own inner life in her novels

      Seems as though she believes the most successful novels stem from true experience, I wonder where we have heard that before.

  4. Feb 2017
    1. Are designations congruent with things? Is Ian+ guage the adequate expression of all realities?

      Once again, Nietzsche's preoccupation with the subjectivity of language echoes that of Campbell.

    2. We put our sub~ jectivc impressions of things into our words and therefore must negotiate their meanings. Language "designates the relations of things 10 men," and these relations arc expressed in "the boldest metaphors."

      "Doubtless, if things themselves be understood, it does not seem material what names are assigned to them." (Campbell 905)

      Nietzsche and Campbell seem to be equally concerned with the subjectivity of language, a concept that @em_bley and I discussed on the Campbell piece from a few weeks back. @em_bley raised some valid concerns that this view does not fully weight the importance of etymology.

    1. Christianity, too, is dependent upon the truthful· ness of testimony about the life and teachings of Jesus. Whately, following Campbell, analyzes testimony in great detail, seeking criteria for its truthfulness and examinT ing the effects of different types of testimony on audiences.

      Newsweek Article: Playing Telephone with the Word of God

      I think this article nicely complicates the concept of "the truthfulness of testimony about the life and teachings of Jesus" in that it suggests that no *true" witness assertions about Jesus that could constitute a historical record actually exist: "No television preacher has ever read the Bible. Neither has any evangelical politician. Neither has the pope. Neither have I. And neither have you. At best, we’ve all read a bad translation—a translation of translations of translations of hand-copied copies of copies of copies of copies, and on and on, hundreds of times."

    2. testimony as a form of moral evidence. By testimony. Campbell means not only the assertions of witnesses in the courtroom, but any assertion about experience-the assertions, for example, that constitute an historical record.

      Campbell testimony

    1. The conspiracy meme flourishes best in politics, religion, and journalism, where practitioners can succeed by attracting followers from the general public.

      "The imagination is addressed by exhibiting to it a lively and beautiful representation of a suitable object." - Campbell

    2. The authorities responded by citing findings from large epidemiologic studies, but much of the press coverage highlighted anecdotal accounts and human-interest stories.

      Campbell argues pretty heavily for testimony as a solid form of evidence (pages 919-20).

    3. But no one had claimed that the steel had melted, only that it had gotten hot enough to weaken and collapse, which it did.

      Campbell: "The like may be said of what is melted, or hardened, or otherwise altered by it. If then, for the first time, I try the influence of fire on any fossil, or other substance, whatever be the effect, I readily conclude that fire will always produce a similar effect on similar bodies. This conclusion is not founded on this single instance, but on this instance compared with a general experience of the regularity of this clement in all its operation" (918).

    4. When an alleged fact is debunked, the conspiracy meme often just replaces it with another fact.

      Campbell's discussion of moral reasoning presented as a "bundle" rather than a "causal chain" is relevant here; it seems that the author of this piece is suggesting that conspiracy theorists present their "facts" in a form that is different from the "causal chain" that Campbell disapproves of. Theorists are able to replace their debunked facts with other facts because they are not connected to one another in a chain-like fashion.

    5. With scientific claims, the only definitive answer is to reexamine the original research data and repeat the experiments and analysis. But no one has the time or the expertise to examine the original research literature on every topic, let alone repeat the research. As such, it is important to have some guidelines for deciding which theories are plausible enough to merit serious examination.

      "The superiority of Scientific Evidence Reexamined":

      "Allow me now to ask, Will he be so perfectly satisfied on the first trial as not to think it of importance to make a second, perhaps u third, and a fourth? Whence arises this diffidence'! Purely from the consciousness of the fallibility of his own faculties. But to what purpose, it may be said, the reiterations of the at-tempt, since it is impossible for him, by any efforts, to shake off his dependence on the accuracy of his attention and fidelity of his memory? Or, what can he have more than reiterated testimonies of his memory, in support of the truth of its for-mer testimony? I acknowledge, that after a hundred attempts he can have no more. But even this is a great deal. We learn from experience, that the mistakes or oversights committed by the mind in one operation. arc sometime!-., on a review, corrected on the second, or perhaps on a third. Besides, the repetition, when no error is discovered, enlivens the remembrance, and so strengthens the conviction. But, for this conviction. it is plain that we are in a great measure indebted to memory. and in some measure even to experience." (Campbell 922)

    6. Conspiracy theorists have connected a lot of dots.

      Campbell: "The second difference I shall remark is, that moral evidence admits degrees, demonstration doth not" (913).

    1. We may distinguish three kinds, or degrees, of eloquence.

      See Campbell's breakdown of appealing to the passions. I think these strikingly similar hierarchies might be important for the conviction/persuasion distinction made on page 970 (as pointed out by Nathaniel).

      It is not, however, every kind of pathos, which will give the orator so great an ascendancy over the minds of his hearers. All passions are not alike capable of producing this effect. Some are naturally inert and torpid; they deject the mind, and indispose it for enterprise . Of this kind are sorrow, fear, shame, humility. Others, on the contrary, elevate the soul, and stimulate to action. Such are hope, patriotism, ambition, emulation, anger. These, with the greatest facility, are made to concur in direction with arguments exciting to resolution and activity : and are, consequently , the fittest for producing what, for want of a better term in our language, I shall henceforth denominate the vehement. There is, besides, an intermediate kind of passions, which do not so congenially and directly either restrain us from acting, or incite us to act; but, by the art of the speaker, can, in an oblique manner, be made conducive to either. Such are joy, love, esteem, compassion. Nevertheless, all these kinds may find a place in suasory discourses, or such as are intended to operate on the will. The first is properest for, dissuading; the second, as hath been already hinted, for persuad- ing; the third is equally accommodated to both. (904)

    2. that there is some foundation for the prelerencc of one man's taste to that of another, or that there is a good and a bad, a right and a wrong in taste, as in other things.

      Perhaps we can link this to Campbell's idea of experience molding us and our ideas?

    1. In other words, he pro-poses either to dispel ignorance or to vanquish error

      A speaker's goal is to eliminate idiocy or carelessness, and how he goals about solving either one determines how he dispels the lies. Ignorant people need to be shown observable and repeatable evidence, careless people need their conviction to the lie to be broken. To Campbell, knowing the difference is crucial to the power of one's rhetoric.

    2. George Campbell

  5. Sep 2016
  6. Jan 2016
    1. Offering students the possibility of experiential learning in personal, interactive, networked computing—in all its gloriously messy varieties—provides the richest opportunity yet for integrative thinking within and beyond "schooling."

      Yes, yes, yes. Networked learning IS experiential. I am always on the lookout for opportunities to facilitate those experiences - for my students and myself, and consider every embrace of glorious messiness a significant victory.

    2. Go into your nearest college or university library. Ignore the computer stations and the digital affordances. Enter the stacks, and run your fingers along the spines of the books on the shelves. You're tracing nodes and connections. You're touching networked learning—slow-motion and erratic, to be sure, but solid and present and, truth to tell, thrilling.

      What a beautiful and evocative series of sentences!