Posted by: otstoryteller | March 5, 2017

Thinking can be difficult

Continuing on a theme…critical thinking can be quite difficult. The hardest part may be that we are changing how we receive information (now primarily through video/images rather than text) and while many do think very well in images (Temple Grandin as an exemplar), I am not sure images lend themselves to full argument analysis for the rest of us.

I am currently reading Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business by Neil Postman, originally published in 1985, but re-released by his son in 2005, and lent to me a few weeks ago by a faculty colleague.  Postman’s argument begins with the differences in both thinking and communicating found at different times in human history. Early on he discusses the high literacy levels in the US during the early decades of the country.

Coupling Postman’s thoughts with Kahneman’s leads to the premise that we must expend much more effort in our personal and collective decision making.  We also need to demand this of our politicians at all levels.  [Cue here the argument, written by many, that we must protect our planet from short term gains that will cause long term harm.]

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