Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Rene Girard on Nietzsche and Irresponsible Rhetoric

Just read Rene Girard's I See Satan Fall Like Lightning.  Several blog/internet associates impelled me to read him and I finally gave in to my good fortune.  The following quote is kind of incidental to his main arguments of this fascinating book but struck me as pithy and relevant to our times.  The book came out in 1999.

"Nietzsche shared with many intellectuals of his time and our own a passion for irresponsible rhetoric in the attempt to get one up on opponents.  But philosophers, for their misfortune, are not the only people in the world.  Genuinely mad and frantic people are all around them and do them the worst turn of all:  they take them at their word."

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Book of Knowledge - Automobile Progress

From an article on Industrial Design.  It shows the evolution of automobiles.  Was always fascinated by this.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Book of Knowledge - Milestones in the March of Civilization

The Book of Knowledge - Milestones in the March of Civilization

Mid 20th century optimism and belief in progress is surely illustrated by this page from my 1952 Book of Knowledge encyclopedia.  Notice that the ultimate development shown as an image is a radio tower.  Television existed but was not widespread and its eventual significance was not anticipated in the picture; however,  shortly thereafter the explosion into virtually all homes occurred.  Our family's first TV arrived in '53 or '54, I think.  Anyway, the importance of technology and the inevitability of technology advancement was impressed on the young Steve.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Book of Knowledge - The Children's Encyclopedia

Left Inside Cover Page

Right Inside Cover Page

This volume of the Book of Knowledge dates to the early fifties, the copyright of this copy is 1952.  I cannot remember when we did not have it.  I spent many hours looking at the pictures before I could even read.  The world it projected defined for me what the world out there is.  The message was one of progress and endless mysteries and fascinating people.  It portrayed a world that was getting better and would always do so.  It must have fed my early interest in science.  It was decidedly Christian.  It was my first exposure to Evolution, which it affirmed.  For more information, there is a short description at Wikipedia.  The encyclopedia is arranged according to the following categories.  It is not arranged in a mechanical, alphabetical way but is more like a place to play.  One can pick up any volume and thumb through all kinds of interesting things.  It is a favourite in home schooling circles.
  • The Earth
  • Science
  • Wonder Questions
  • Animal Life
  • Plant Life
  • Own Own Life
  • Familiar Things
  • All Countries
  • The United States
  • Other Countries
  • Fine Arts
  • Literature
  • Famous Books
  • Stories
  • Poetry
  • Golden Deeds
  • Men and Women
  • Things to Make and Things to Do

Note Added later in the day:  I just now heard this quote on "Criminal Minds" and it is very pertinent to this post.

“within the core of each of us is the child we once were. This child constitutes the foundation of what we have become, who we are, and what we will be.”

Rhawn Joseph (neuroscientist)

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