Re: [Possible SPAM] Re: [Possible SPAM] Re: [xmca] Copernicus, Darwinand Bohr

From: Martin Packer <packer who-is-at>
Date: Thu Jun 28 2007 - 07:33:02 PDT


Against my best intentions I'm going to let myself be drawn into the
discussion of experts and novices. You have said:

On 6/28/07 8:24 AM, "Wolff-Michael Roth" <> wrote:

> This, then,
> makes the ontological opposition of THE expert and THE novice highly
> questionable.

and Dale has said:

> The determination of whether a knowledge source is an "expert," a
> "nerd," or a "mad scientist" is largely a rhetorical one.

I would agree with both characterizations. Identification of expert and
novice is possible only within the normative practices of a community. Such
identifications can be and are contested. Maintaining such an identity
requires ongoing work, both material and rhetorical. But none of this means
that 'experts' and 'novices' don't exist. It means they exist within
specific historical and cultural conditions, and that as these conditions
change identifications of expertize and noviciate-ness will shift. And
presumably what count as 'frailties' and 'flaws' are equally defined by
contingent practices. (Think of the way NCLB diagnoses 'flawed' children and
schools.) All this is no surprise to a sociocultural perspective, I think.


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Received on Thu Jun 28 07:32 PDT 2007

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