Wednesday, April 04, 2018

The Tragedy Of The Common Culture

Someone sent me an article "How A Generation Lost Its Common Culture" by professor Patrick Deneen of Notre Dame.  It starts thus:

My students are know-nothings. They are exceedingly nice, pleasant, trustworthy, mostly honest, well-intentioned, and utterly decent. But their brains are largely empty, devoid of any substantial knowledge that might be the fruits of an education in an inheritance and a gift of a previous generation. They are the culmination of western civilization, a civilization that has forgotten nearly everything about itself, and as a result, has achieved near-perfect indifference to its own culture.

Ah, so it's a trip down memory lane.  I've been hearing this "students are so dumb these days" jazz for as long as I've been alive, and I'm pretty sure it goes back well before me (to, say, Socrates).

In fact, when I read Deneen's paragraph, I thought for a second it was a cut-and-paste job from Allan Bloom's 1980s bestseller The Closing Of The American Mind.  The 80s was a golden age of concern over student ignorance.  For instance, there was the kinder approach of E. D Hirsch's Cultural Literacy, which listed thousands of facts that everyone needed to know (but, by implication, didn't).

I note that the loss of our common culture was a big deal in the 1980s because that's when Patrick Deneen was in college.  And he turned out fine (or at least a lot of his generation did).

Look, 18-year-olds are only gonna know so much, so it's pretty sad when someone who's spent decades learning literature, history, political science or whatever (or just watching the news) mocks them for lack of enlightenment.  I suggest he spend more time teaching and less whining.

1 Comments:

Blogger Movies Reviews said...

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In Darabonts take on the apocalypse, you are there. The world is dead and rotting. The military have lost the battle. You wake up with Rick in this new world and get to explore it with him. Its the exposition of the pilot that will probably put the gorehounds off and lead to some small criticism from others. Personally, i want to see that. I want to know how society responded to the phenomenon.

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I cant say enough about Frank darabont after watching this. He understands what this genre is all about and, more importantly, he understands Romero's zombie world. The zombies are Roamers and lurkers. They act how they should and you do feel sorry for them. This is explored really well. They are a small threat but in groups all riled up and hungry. Well, you know the rest. watch Avengers Infinity War online free hd

The score is also outstanding. Very understated but poignant. The cinematography is worthy of a movie and the camera moves a lot. I cant recall any shaky cam which some people here seem to despise.

Kirkman, Darabont and AMC have come up with the series we have been waiting years for. Long may it continue, and you know what? I think it will. The balance is perfect between a horror film, TV show and intelligent drama. Happy death day 2017

8:44 PM, April 04, 2018  

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