Joel Shaver

Oct 17 2014
Oct 15 2014
Oct 08 2014

Did I Miss Anything? —Tom Wayman

Nothing. When we realized you weren’t here
we sat with our hands folded on our desks
in silence, for the full two hours

Everything. I gave an exam worth
40 percent of the grade for this term
and assigned some reading due today
on which I’m about to hand out a quiz
worth 50 percent

Nothing. None of the content of this course
has value or meaning
Take as many days off as you like:
any activities we undertake as a class
I assure you will not matter either to you or me
and are without purpose

Everything. A few minutes after we began last time
a shaft of light suddenly descended and an angel
or other heavenly being appeared
and revealed to us what each woman or man must do
to attain divine wisdom in this life and the hereafter
This is the last time the class will meet
before we disperse to bring the good news to all people on earth.

Nothing. When you are not present
how could something significant occur?

Everything. Contained in this classroom
is a microcosm of human experience
assembled for you to query and examine and ponder
This is not the only place such an opportunity has been gathered

but it was one place

And you weren’t here

(Source: loc.gov)

Oct 07 2014
If Americans want to live the American Dream, they should move to Denmark.
— Richard Wilkinson (via a student paper)
Oct 02 2014
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(via Triangulations | playful, analytic explorations).  Interesting graphic — leaves the Germanic origins of the language a little unclear, though.

(via Triangulations | playful, analytic explorations). Interesting graphic — leaves the Germanic origins of the language a little unclear, though.

Sep 26 2014
Sep 25 2014

(via Brian Reed - The Craft Of Storytelling - Video Archive - The Conference by Media Evolution)

Some of the same insights from the Ira Glass videos on storytelling, but more condensed and with different examples.

Sep 24 2014
But the real message of our technology is something entirely unexpected— a writerly, anarchic text that is more useful than the readerly, institutional text. Useful and practical not in spite of its anarchic nature, but as a natural consequence of the speed and scale that inhere in all anarchic systems. This is, if you like, the basis of the Screwmeneutical Imperative. There are so many books. There is so little time. Your ethical obligation is neither to read them all nor to pretend that you have read them all, but to understand each path through the vast archive as an important moment in the world’s duration—as an invitation to community, relationship, and play.
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Is it possible to imagine this kind of highly serendipitous journey replacing the ordered mannerism of conventional search? It’s important here to note that the choice is not between Google and Stumble — between surfing and asking Jeeves. It’s not a matter of replacing one with the other, as any librarian will tell you. It is rather to ask whether we are ready to accept surfing and stumbling — screwing around, broadly understood — as a research methodology. For to do so would be to countenance the irrefragable complexities of what “no one really knows.” Could we imagine a world in which “Here is an ordered list of the books you should read,” gives way to, “Here is what I found. What did you find?” Because this is the conversation I and many other professional scholars and intellectuals are having on Twitter every single day, and it’s not clear that we are worse for it.
Stephen Ramsay - The Hermeneutics of Screwing Around; or What You Do with a Million Books (found while screwing around instead of preparing for class)
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