Berthoff – Buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo makes grammatical sense

If we are to teach our students to read for meaning--to construe and interpret and appreciate literary texts--the meaning of meaning most useful to us is that it is a means: speaking and writing, listening and reading all engage us in the making of meaning by means of language Ann Berthoff My immediate reaction to this... Continue Reading →


The Poet, the Program and the Method

Coleridge's ideal poet The poet, described in ideal perfection, brings the whole soul of man into activity, with the subordination of its faculties to each other according to their relative worth and dignity. He diffuses a tone and spirit of unity, that blends, and (as it were) fuses, each into each, by that synthetic and... Continue Reading →

Burke – Acceptance vs. Acquiescence

"Acceptance of"--not necessarily "acquiescence to." By acceptance is meant an openness to the factors involved. One may accept a situation in thundering against it. Voltaire accepted. Acceptance is exposure.  Whether one builds a wall against the new by reaffirming the old, or seeks by a loosening to incorporate the new, he will be "accepting" in... Continue Reading →

Burke’s Program – Living vs. Dead Discourse

Jasper Neel's Aristotle's Voice, Coleridge's essays on the Method, Burke's Terministic Screens, and now Burke's Program all talk about living discourse vs.  dead discourse. [The artist's] innovations today must be, in some way, the humanistic or cultural counterpart of the external changes brought about by industrialism, or mechanization. Kenneth Burke I think it is the... Continue Reading →

Coleridge – On Thinking

I have a weird thinking process that has never made sense to anyone I have tried to explain it to.  I talk to myself for long periods of time and then ask myself questions in between the talking to answer it.  The questions I ask myself are usually questions I think another person would ask... Continue Reading →

Coleridge – The Joy of Learning

Thus exuberance of mind, on the one hand, interferes with the forms of Method; but sterility of mind, on the other, wanting the spring and impulse to mental action, is wholly destructive of Method itself. Samuel Coleridge Excitement and desire for learning changes the forms of Method (making it organic just as humans are organic).  However,... Continue Reading →

Coleridge – “Definition” of Method

Method...becomes natural to the mind which has been accustomed to contemplate not things only, or for their sake alone, but likewise and chiefly the relations of things, either their relations to each other, or to the observer, or to the state and apprehension of the hearers.  To enumerate and analyze these relations, which the conditions under which... Continue Reading →

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