Thanks for kicking off the amazing experience that is #rhizo14. It’s a really great place for learning.
(Aside: I still find it very difficult to make any sense of the idea of the ‘community is the curriculum’ in whole or in part within this experience and not sure how far the negotations have got with regard to that part of the title.)
I am very confused: sometimes I got the impression that you were referring to text books, books that purport to be factual, asking “Do they encourage the tendency to look for a ‘correct’ answer? ” Well the answer, as it often is for me, is “it depends”.
I wonder if the framing of the questions doesn’t tend to polarise the debate, a little as you critique the article by Sherry Turkle (to which you have linked) in the context of readers. Sometimes you are referring to books that, though they are ‘frozen’ by actually being published at a particular date (albeit with several editions), would never purport to contain truth in terms of facts. Some as these, such as ‘Through the Looking Glass’ that you quote in your last sentence neither purport to be nor would be taken (by most people) collections of facts. Incidentally, as well as being about meaning, Humpty Dumpty is also talking about power
” Alice was too much puzzled to say anything, so after a minute Humpty Dumpty began again. “They’ve a temper, some of them—particularly verbs, they’re the proudest—adjectives you can do anything with, but not verbs—however, I can manage the whole lot! Impenetrability! That’s what I say!””
Books didn’t replace orality, anymore than orality as it might have been understood by Socrates will be returned to. Conversations on blogs have both similarities and differences to both print texts and verbal utterances.
As I said on the Facebook group “It made think immediately of Wenger’s use of dualities in his Communities of Practice work – specifically the duality of participation and reification – mouthful! So that might be the tensions between us having conversations here on the FB group and the more concrete things we make and share like blog posts (by ourselves and others), course designs and tips, remixed images, etc. Anyway – it’s not just either/or and we have jenny mackness on hand to explain it more thoroughly;) http://jennymackness.wordpress.com/tag/reification/ ”
I think there is a real danger of us getting stuck in dualisms / polarisations when looking at dualities might be a more fruitful approach.