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[Xmca-l] Re: Rationalism and Imagination


     Thanks for the pointers. I have sporadically done as you mention over the last ten or so years without much success; perhaps it is time to try again.


> On Dec 10, 2015, at  7:03 PM, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Ed,
> Re your unknown book.  I would expect that there are web sites dedicated to
> that sort of thing by now.
> Its not my cup of tea but I thought I'd put the idea here anyway:
> How many 'chain-emails' would have to be forwarded before your book was
> found, would that be an index of its obscurity?  Would this be an
> interesting contrast between google search and facebook search?
> Best,
> Huw
> On 10 December 2015 at 18:54, Ed Wall <ewall@umich.edu> wrote:
>> Mike
>>     You wrote, reflecting on something Larry had written, about seeing
>> how "the connection between rationalism and the way that imagining gets
>> drained of its affectiveness in the process of becoming something stable
>> enough to call a representation. In musing about this, I thought of perhaps
>> some examples that might or might not illustrate what you are pointing at
>> and would be interested in your reaction:
>> 1. I grew up with radio and as a boy would listen spellbound to stories
>> and adventure programs. As I think back about it, this probably required
>> more than a bit of imagination. As time passed, my family finally got a
>> television. After my first viewing of a TV program that purported to be
>> identical in content with one of those radio programs I so loved, I,
>> underwhelmed, never again watched that program as seeing the characters ‘
>> finally’ ‘rationally' interpreted was unpleasant (and I really didn’t
>> imagine them on radio as having some sort of fixed image). I have had the
>> same experience, by the way, when seeing a movie that follows closely a
>> book I have read. Somehow, one might say, my imagination was stifled by
>> fixedness of those visual representations. I, to this day, still find TV,
>> for the most part, stifling in regards to imagination.
>> 2. A number of years ago I came across a web summary of book in somewhat
>> diary form written by a mathematician writing about the education of his
>> son - I have tried again and gain to locate that book (I seem to remember
>> the mathematician was either French or Polish) so if by some chance anybody
>> has run across the same let me know! One passage in particular stood out.
>> The mathematician was talking about his son struggling with some sort of
>> mathematics problem. He noted that he took the time to sit down with his
>> son and show him how to solve the problem. The mathematician continues in
>> his diary that he then reflected on how, in this early intervention, he had
>> ruined the pleasure of doing mathematics - perhaps forever - for his son.
>> [As a side note, as part of a research team of mathematics educators we
>> often traded mathematics problems around - abilities were varied from those
>> with, one might say, little mathematics to those who were well known
>> research mathematicians. - so the problems were doable by most.  A rule,
>> which I follow to this day, is you don’t spoil a problem for another by
>> telling them the solution. Research mathematicians are very bad about this
>> - mainly because they get excited - and I remember scolding one (smile)!]
>> Ed