Wednesday, April 28, 2010

 

A thought for spring

The liberal arts is a struggle. It is the unending, yet inevitably unsuccessful, rearguard struggle against ignorance and oblivion. Every day new people are born, who eventually learn to talk, to read, to think. Unless we share with them our experiences, our wisdom & histories, they will never know them. But we cannot share all of these with those who come after us, so every day as someone dies, another battle is lost.

That is why I tell myself I contribute to Wikipedia.

It is one way to transfer what has been preserved in print into the electronic medium, where hopefully this material will continue to survive, & be found & used by those who are not yet alive. However, not all of this material will make the transition; the majority of what has been written has not made the jump into print, & the majority of what has been said, let alone experienced, has likewise failed to make the jump into a more permanent form.

So the best we can do is to keep the number of defeats to a manageable number, & hope that those who are not yet alive will join in this unending, demoralizing rearguard struggle. For if we concede this struggle, the result will be worse than the current status.

Geoff

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