Business School Educ LO6012

jack hirschfeld (
Wed, 6 Mar 1996 22:48:38 -0500

Replying to LO5982 --

In the most recent addition to this thread, prodded by John Warfield, John
Woods has sortied into the territory of fads. The subject of faddism in
management surfaces in this conversation every five or six weeks, like a
fishing float bobbing up and under in a gently turbulent stream.

I enjoy thinking of fads as evolutionary wannabes. My sense of the flux
of emergence and submergence in continuing systems includes an image of
variations and mutations trying to survive. Some make it, others don't.
There were probably dozens, if not hundreds of sectarian heresies among
the Jews in Judea that came and departed (fads!) before the circle around
Jesus adapted some Essene beliefs and practices and made Christianity

What's difficult to know about fads (when they are contemporaneous with
the observer) is whether they are truly ephemera or practices of enduring
value which have only a temporary popularity. Swallowing goldfish has
come and gone. The hula hoop seems to come and go in cycles. But the
frisbee endures.

In the light of this, what are we to make of Rubik's cube, which was
invented to assist in a particular learning, and which seems to have
vanished with the death of the commercial cycle that gave it wide
currency? And what of the lessons it was intended to teach?

Jack Hirschfeld        It seems we have met before, and lived before, and           loved before, but who knows where or when?

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