The Reformed English Curriculum Revisited

The Reformed English Curriculum Revisited
Scheduled: Jan 26, 2018, 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Location: The Players Club, 16 Gramercy Park S, New York, NY 10003

The Reform English Curriculum Revisited

 A Panel Discussion  

At the 58th annual meeting of the National Council of Teachers of English, held in Milwaukee on November 29, 1968, Neil Postman gave an address entitled “Growing Up Relevant” as the main part of a program session entitled Media Ecology: The English of the Future. This talk was later published as a book chapter in the anthology, High School 1980: The Shape of the Future in American Secondary Education, edited by Alvin C. Eurich, where it appeared under the title of, The Reformed English Curriculum.

In conjunction with the 1974 Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture sponsored by the Institute of General Semantics, Postman delivered an address entitled, Media Ecology: General Semantics in the Third Millennium, emphasizing the link between the two. A similar connection was made in the 1969 book he co-authored with Charles Weingartner, Teaching as a Subversive Activity, which introduced “the Sapir-Whorf-Korzybski-Ames-Einstein-Heisenberg-Wittgenstein-McLuhan-Et Al. Hypothesis … that language is not merely a vehicle of expression, it is also the driver; and that what we perceive, and therefore can learn, is a function of our languaging processes.”

Postman’s 1968 address marks the formal introduction of the term media ecology, which Postman used as the name for a field of inquiry that he defined as the study of media as environments. As this year marks the 50th anniversary of that talk, it seems only fitting to revisit “The Reformed English Curriculum,” and the equally seminal, “Media Ecology: General Semantics in the Third Millennium,” as our first NYSGS event of 2018. What can we learn about the history of media ecology as a field, its relation to general semantics, to the study of language and the subject of English? What can we learn about Neil Postman in particular, and his views on education, communication, and culture? To what extent have things changed over the past half century, and to what extent do they remain the same?

We have the rare opportunity of presenting a program consisting entirely of out-of-towners who have converged on New York City to attend the annual Media Ecology Association board meeting. The participants on this program are:

  •   Adriana Braga, Professor in the Graduate Program in Social Communication at the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, Researcher at the National Council for Technological and Scientific Development–CNPq/Brazil, and author of CMC, Identidades e Género; Personas Materno-Eletrônicas; and Corpo-Verão.
  •   Stephanie Bennett, Professor of Communication and Media Ecology and Fellow for Student Engagement at Palm Beach Atlantic University in South Florida, and author of the Within the Walls trilogy, which employs fiction to explore the future of digital media, relationship sustainability, and community.
  •   Fernando Gutiérrez, head of the Division of Humanities and Education at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (State of Mexico Campus), and author and co-editor of several titles about media.
  •   Paolo Granata, holder of the Marshall McLuhan and Print Culture professorship at St. Michael’s College in the University of Toronto, after spending 15 years at the University of Bologna, Italy, and author of Arte in Rete; Arte, Estetica e Nuovi Media;  Mediabilia; and Ecologia dei Media.

and moderating the discussion, Edward Tywoniak, Professor of Communication, Director of the W. M. Keck Media Lab and Program Director for the Digital Studies major at Saint Mary’s College of California, Trustee of the Institute of General Semantics, editor of ETC: A Review of General Semantics, and President of the Media Ecology Association.

At the Players Club, NY
At the Players Club, NY. Ed Tywoniak, Stephanie Bennett, Fernando Gutiérrez, Paolo Granata

Come join us for a program that is sure to be intriguing and unique!

6 PM to 9 PM Wednesday, December 6th at the historic Players Club in Gramercy Park.

Registration is free, but all attendees must be registered in order to gain admittance to the club. This includes any guests you might want to bring with you.

The program will take place in the Library on the 2nd floor of the club. Please note that, as an historic 19th century landmark, the site is not handicap accessible. Dress code is business casual and is strictly enforced, including no sneakers, shorts, ripped jeans, t-shirts).

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The Louis Forsdale Award (2015)

Comparto el reconocimiento Louis Forsdale 2015 que la Media Ecology Association me entregó el sábado 13 de junio, durante la cena de premiación celebrada en la Metropolitan State University de Denver, Colorado.

2015 Louis Forsdale Award
2015 Louis Forsdale Award

La Media Ecology Association es una organización norteamericana sin fines de lucro, dedicada a promover el estudio, la investigación, crítica y aplicación de esta meta-disciplina (Media Ecology) en el contexto educacional, industrial, político, cívico, social, cultural y artístico.

En la siguiente liga puede consultarse la lista de ganadores de los reconocimientos 2015 de la Media Ecology Association.

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The Digital World – Frédéric Martel

La Cátedra Alfonso Reyes del Tecnológico de Monterrey presenta el seminario The Digital World impartido por Frédéric Martel, del 2 al 4 de septiembre de 15 a 17 h.

Transmisión en vivo:

Frédéric Martel

Escritor, investigador y periodista francés, director de investigación del Instituto de Relaciones Internacionales y Estratégicas (IRIS). Doctor en Sociología (EHSS), cuenta con cuatro maestrías en Sociología, Ciencia política, Derecho público y Filosofía (Universidades París II y París I). Ha sido agregado cultural de la embajada de Francia en los Estados Unidos y en Rumania. Es autor de diversos libros, entre los que se encuentran “Le rose et le noir”, “Les homosexuels en France depuis 1968”, “Sur le déclin du théâtre en Amérique”, “De la culture en Amérique”, “Cultura Mainstream”.

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Children are the Living Messages We Send to a Time We Will Not See (Neil Postman, 1982)

This is a special request from my good friend Lance Strate. Today is the 80th anniversary of Neil Postman’s birth, and he want us to help in an effort to correct an injustice that exists online.

Lance says that Neil’s most memorable quote is, “Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see.”  But if you Google that quote, you’ll find that more often than not, it is attributed to someone else, specifically John W. Whitehead (the rightwing lawyer who represented Paula Jones against Bill Clinton).

The idea is to start a campaign on this day to spread the word, and set the online record straight, at least as much as possible. Lance explains the full story in this post:

This post is very interesting, so I recommend it.

This a part of the history:

…The Disappearance of Childhood  was the second of Postman’s major works providing a critical analysis of television’s influence on culture.  It was preceded by Teaching as a Conserving Activity, and followed by Amusing Ourselves to Death.  And if you find Postman’s media ecology scholarship at all interesting and valuable, and especially if you’ve read Amusing Ourselves to Death and you haven’t read The Disappearance of Childhood, then you will find The Disappearance of Childhood to be a delightful companion piece, a well-crafted extended essay, and important work of cultural criticism.

Postman begins by writing that “children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see,” because he was writing about communication, which involves the sending of messages through a channel to a receiver.  In the case of messages sent to the future, the receiver may be unknown to us, but the basic idea still applies…. (read the full story)

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Más de 13 millones de personas vieron el final de ‘Lost’ en EE. UU.

Publica La Vanguardia en su edición impresa que más de 13 millones de personas vieron el final de ‘Lost’ en EE. UU.

“Perdidos (Lost en el título original en inglés) reunió a 13, 5 millones de espectadores en EE. UU., lo que convirtió al capítulo final en el más visto de las seis temporadas. La retrospectiva que se emitió justo antes (Lost: the final journey)acumuló una discreta media de 9,8 espectadores. El momento culminante llegó durante los últimos 30 minutos de la serie, cuando 15,3 millones de personas se reunieron frente a la pantalla para ser testigos de un desenlace que ha dejado a más de uno con cierta insatisfacción. Las cifras de espectadores, aunque altas, no han estado a la altura de otros finales sonados. Series de culto como Seinfeld lograron 76 millones de espectadores; Friends,52 millones, y Everybody loves Raymond, 33 millones. A pesar de ello superó el capítulo final de Los Soprano,uno de los últimos grandes éxitos del canal de pago HBO, que puso el punto final a su historia en el 2007 con 12 millones de espectadores. Aun así, el esperado desenlace de la serie de ABC está lejos de convertirse en un récord y ni siquiera situó la serie entre las diez producciones más vistas del año…”

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Fallece Edward Hall, pionero en los estudios de la comunicación no verbal

Una triste noticia para los estudiosos de la Comunicación.

El New York Times publicó ayer 4 de agosto de 2009 en su sección “Science” una nota sobre el fallecimiento de Edward T. Hall, un antropólogo cultural que fue pionero en los estudios de la comunicación no verbal.

Según la nota, Edward Hall murió en sus casa en Santa Fé, Nuevo México (Estados Unidos) a la edad de 95.
Para mayor información véase la nota completa:
Edward Hall, Expert on Nonverbal Communication, Is Dead at 95

De acuerdo a mi buen amigo Lance Strate -fundador de la Media Ecology Association– Hall será siempre reconocido por haber introducido el concepto de proxémica(1) en 1963, que describe las distancias medibles entre las personas mientras estas interactuan entre sí, y por otra parte la cronémica (2) que se refiere a la concepción, estructuración y uso del tiempo que hace el ser humano, en el acto de comunicación. También por los trabajos desarrollados con Ray Birdwhistell, quien presentó el concepto de Kinésica centrado en el estudio del lenguaje corporal.

Hall también será considerado como uno de los máximos exponentes de la comunicación intercultural, con gran influencia en el pensamiento de Marshall McLuhan y por lo tanto en el movimiento de la ecología mediática. Entre sus principales obran aún destacan:

  • The Silent Language (1959).
  • The Hidden Dimension  (1966)
  •  Beyond Culture (1976).
  • The Dance of Life: The Other Dimension of Time (1983).
  • Hidden Differences: How to Communicate with the Germans (1983).
  • Hidden Differences: Doing Business with the Japanese (1987).
  • Understanding Cultural Differences: Germans, French and Americans (1990).

“…One example he always gave was the way that married couples do not need to say much to know how the other is feeling,” said Gladys Levis-Pilz, a former research assistant to Mr. Hall at Northwestern University. “By looking at each other’s faces or reading each other’s gestures, they can instantly get more information than they could from explicit statements.”

Para mayor información véase la nota completa:
Edward Hall, Expert on Nonverbal Communication, Is Dead at 95

— o —

(1) De acuerdo a Hall la proxémica es uno de loas aspectos más importantes de la comunicación, se refiere al empleo y a la percepción que el ser humano hace de su espacio físico y de su intimidad personal.

(2) La cronémica trata de analizar aquellos aspectos relacionados con el manejo del tiempo.

Proxémica y cronémica son escenciales en la comunicación no verbal, y de acuerdo a algunos estudiosos del tema, solo el 30% de un mensaje se transmite por medio de las palabras, y el resto  mediante la forma de hablar, moverse, gesticular y manejar las relaciones espaciales, lo que algunos llaman indicadores de contexto.

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