Saturday, 2 June 2012

Junk Diet

The funny thing about progress is the paucity of its evidential basis – there seems to be things we can point to: technology for one; then other things, more nebulous, like social advancement, improvements in education, collective wisdom, etc., which are not. Are we smarter than the ancient Greeks? Are the more modern Greeks smarter than their fore-bearers? What brought this brooding on is the concern, while flipping through my selective collection of books, music and videos, of the danger we are losing – collectively speaking – in the miasma of the vast information depository of the Internet – the battle to discriminate against trivia. Trivia is a brief entertainment – and I love it as such – but is not the necessary diet of fruit, meat and vegetables. And progress is a concept that is often used to eclipse the question of what is good. They are not synonymous.

1 comment:

  1. This was a favorite rant of the best lecturer I ever had.

    He covered the West from Ancient to pre-Modern over four or five courses. It was during the midieval course that, in a desperate attempt to explain that these people did not believe that things progressively got better...that in fact they believed that things got progressively worse...he would point at a student and ask, "YOOOOOU think your Latin is better than Cicero's?"