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« Leon Krier | Main | Miseducations »

August 16, 2002

Leon Krier Redux


Great stuff. Why do you think we never heard about guys like this while we were at our Lousy Ivy College?

Have you ever noticed that universities (with the possible exception of the sciences) seem to be about the last place one would go for truly original thinking on any subject? One suspects that's because academic "teaching" amounts to a sustained test of a student's abilities to absorb and parrot back the concepts that their teachers present to them; the people that are happy with this paradigm as students seem to be the ones that go in for careers in academia.

The Ivies: Avoid 'em

I remember being astonished once at hearing that Einstein got to pondering General Relativity because he was thinking about all objects, light and heavy, falling towards the earth at the same acceleration (a measurable fact). He couldn't believe that it was because (as Newton's gravitational theory explained it) that objects of larger mass had their increased gravitational pull exactly offset by an increase in massy inertia. Einstein apparently thought, "It's perfectly offset, 100% of the time, always and everywhere? Bullshit!" So Einstein decided to look for another mechanism which would explain the observable phenomenon.

The reason I was astonished by this is that it totally flies in the face of traditional academic expectations in which the godlike teacher knows all the answers and you get higher grades the faster you get with the program.



posted by Michael at August 16, 2002


"Lousy Ivy College?"

You've mentioned that a number of times.

I went to one, too. And i realized (a bit late -- when I was nearing graduation)that I would have been much better off had I gone to an ag school, or maybe forestry, something rooted and basic. The idea that the vast majority of 17 - 18 year olds can benefit from reading Kant, Hegel etc etc would be comical except that we make so many of them go through such an absurd rite of passage.

College is somewhat wasted on collegians.

Posted by: David on July 21, 2003 6:49 PM

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