Friday, 15 October 2010

Aesthetic or Anesthetic

I've just started reading The Arts and the Creation of Mind by Elliot Eisner. In the introduction there's a short section which deserves to be shared:
"Efficiency is largely a virtue for the tasks we don’t like to do; few of us like to eat a great meal efficiently or to participate in a wonderful conversation efficiently, or indeed to make love efficiently. What we enjoy the most we linger over. A school system designed with an overriding commitment to efficiency may produce outcomes that have little enduring quality." (My emphasis)
I'm looking forward to reading more of these insights.

On a related note the following RSA Animate video has just been made public. It's of 'Sir' Ken Robinson. I've been critical of Sir Ken in the past - he tends to err a little too far toward hyperbole for my liking. I'm also rather skeptical of his acceptance of a knighthood since, to my mind, it goes against all that he professes to stand for. Still, this makes some important points, so I'll leave you to decide for yourself.


Lori Stevens said...

I'm excited you're reading this book! I think you'll find much to reflect upon, even though many in the states believe some of his thinking is dated. For me he often provides the roots to much of what I know in my soul but have trouble articulating. I think he's sorta magical.

ENJOY! You may choose to read more of Eisner; I think I've read most of his work.

J. Hamlyn said...

Hi Lori,

Thanks to you for recommending Eisner's book on your blog in the first place - I'm really enjoying reading his powerful articulation of the value of creative intelligence. I can see that some of his thinking might be thought of as dated but his central arguments are both refreshing and affirmative of many of what I consider to be core beliefs about the power and potential of imagination. He's also eminently quotable. Great stuff!

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