Learning and knowledge LO6486

Sun, 7 Apr 1996 11:27:05 -0400

With both good humor and a desire to further the dialogue, I think we
sometimes try too hard to give names to things in our rush to understand
and make concrete our observations.

The term "knowledge era" may be useful but when do we date it's beginning.
Sir Francis Bacon is listed in Bartlett's as the one who coined the
phrase: "Knowledge is power." So does the knowledge era begin in the later
1600's? Someone on this list, I am sure, will be able to tell us who said
that when you name a thing/idea you kill it or at least box it in so it
can't continue to grow. The point is, that as soon as we name this the
knowledge era, we set in motion its end, or at least a hundred

Years ago Harold Lasswell gave us great insight into how ideas, especially
political or world view ideas, grow, expand, are resisted, co-opted, et
cetera. We should learn from those insights and resist limiting ourselves
with names that box us in or locate us in one particular culture.

A friend of mine says when asked what he does says: "Quality stuff." The
questioner then usually tries to pin him down. You mean you're involved
with TQM, CI, BPR, LO, or do you do Deming? My friend replies: "quality
stuff." Now stuff may not be a very precise term, but it does keep him
from getting head banded by others and it enables him to learn and apply
new insights without being accused of being disloyal to any stream of
thought or guru. This same friend also often gets asked: "Well, what kind
of quality "stuff" do you use?" Again, he senses that someone is trying to
box him in, so he replies: "the stuff that works." His only fear is that
someday, someone will refer to what he does as the TSTW approach.

Ned Hamson, editor: The Journal for Quality and Participation
Association for Quality and Participation, 801-B W. 8th St., Suite 501,
Cincinnati, OH 45203
Tel: 513-381-1979 Fax: 513-381-0070
e-mail: ParetoKid@aol.com
"This is the time... We are the people... Let's work together... Now!"



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