For A View from the Humanities
I wish to propose the following educational technique....at irregular intervals, poetry students should find dogfishes on their desk and biology students should find Shakespeare sonnets on their dissecting board....we notice two traits [in this situation:] (1) an openness of the thing before one--instead of being an exercise to be learned according to an approved mode, it is a garden of delights which comes to one; (2) a sovereignty of the knower--instead of being a consumer of a prepared experience, I am a sovereign wayfarer, a wanderer in the neighborhood of being who stumbles into the garden.
Walker Percy. "The Loss of the Creature." The Message in the Bottle: How Queer Man Is, How Queer Language Is, and What One Has to Do with the Other. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1975. 46-63.
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove.
O, no! it is an ever- fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wand'ring bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom:
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
- What do you see?
- Who is talking?
- Who is he talking to?
- What form does his talking take?
- Why is he talking? (i.e. what motivates the poem?)
- Do you find the argument compelling?
- What makes an argument compelling to you?
- What role do counterfactuals play in your thinking/working?
To consider: the process of falsification, the pose of self-justification, the challenge of finding "proof."
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