'culture is a possible pattern of meanings inherited from the immediate past, a canopy for the interpretive needs of the present'
The property reference goes from hard - arable land, the tomb, corpses and pagan gods - to soft, a simple signature on paper, from pagus to page; the ancient word is repeated as it goes from hard to soft… Serres p23.
Hack work is not the result of either clumsiness or provincialism; it is the result of the market making more insistent demands than the art.
— Berger, Ways of Seeing, p88
… allegory as a relation, a parallel between two or more sets of events, whether fictional events with true referents ("allegory of the poets") or real historical events figurally related to other historical events ("allegory of the theologians").
— Alighieri, Dante. The Divine Comedy of Dante Alighieri : Volume 1: Inferno. Oxford University Press, 1996.
Additional Notes p551
Capitalism was a natural phenomenon with which a new dream-filled sleep came over Europe, and, through it, a reactivation of mythic forces.
— Benjamin, The Arcades Project [K1a,8]
In John Hattie’s excellent book on pedagogy - Visible Learning for Teachers - there is an insistence that teachers take responsibility for those aspects of their students learning that they can influence or control. Although factors beyond the teachers capacity to control &/or influence are very significant parts of learning (eg peers, family & home, wealth & inequality, social structural matters) that is not important for what teachers do. Teachers must do their best in those areas that they can and not to do so is both unethical & infantile.
The same reduction must take place in the art and science of politics, at least in the case of the most advanced States, where “civil society” has become a very complex structure and one which is resistant to the catastrophic “incursions” of the immediate economic element (crises, depressions, etc.). The superstructures of civil society are like the trench-systems of modern warfare. In war it would sometimes happen that a fierce artillery attack seemed to have destroyed the enemy’s entire defensive system, whereas in fact it had only destroyed the outer perimeter; and at the moment of their advance and attack the the assailants would find themselves confronted by a line of defence which was still effective. The same thing happens in politics, during the great economic crises. A crisis cannot give the attacking forces the ability to organise with lightning speed in time and in space; still less can it endow them with fighting spirit. Similarly, the defenders are not demoralised, nor do they abandon their positions, even among the ruins, nor do they lose faith in their own strength or their own future. Of course, things do not remain exactly as they were ; but it is certain that one will not find the element of speed, of accelerated time, of the definitive forward march expected by the strategists of political Cadornism.
— Gramsci, ‘State & Civil Society’, Selections from the Prison Notebooks, p235
Education & Control: Coding with Alexander Galloway
In Galloway’s The Poverty of Philosophy (Critical Inquiry 39.2 Winter 2013) there is an clear demonstration that computing (& thus mathematics) are an instrumental part of the capitalist mode of production in its current form of organisation.
Thus it is not too much of a stretch to say that the contemporary mode of production has a very special relationship with object-oriented computer languages, just as one might have said fifty years ago that it has a special relationship with assembly line manufacturing or a hundred years ago with the steam engine. In short, Java and other languages are the tools par excellence of the contemporary postindustrial infrastructure. One should have no illusions about it.
When the state authorities and lords of civil society cry out ‘learn to code’ they are explicitly bending education to the needs of capitalism (both economic & ideological) in the most shockingly simplistic way.
Calls such as this - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-26437730 - or initiatives such as this - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-24109190 - are at root a demand that one implements the control society over oneself.