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David Boyle   ::   Authenticity

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'If I wear a pair of Armani underpants, they do not become a part of Carlo Petrini. If I eat a slice of ham, it becomes a part of Carlo Petrini. That is why I worry more about ham than fashion.'
And at times of crisis or high national emotion we turn to poets and novelists as if their search for truth has made them wiser than the rest of us. In the days following the terrorist attacks of 9/11, the Guardian commissioned articles from novelists such as Martin Amis and Ian McEwan. And two weeks later, they were on the stage of the Queen's Theatre in London, just talking: it was a sell-out success. A generation ago, we turned to the space scientists and microbiologists. Now we turn to storytellers and poets.
Computers may be able to write poems and carve sculptures, but they do it by searching for possible random combinations, not through flashes of inspiration. They deduce, they don't intuit. They can't explain the meaning of their work.
That's the great fear: that in the end those who think reality lies in the numbers will recreate the world as if nothing else matters. We forget those aspects of life - the most important ones - that can't be measured, then forget we've forgotten them. You can already see this process starting with education and economics. If exams or test scores are the only things that matter, then that's all education becomes. Only what is immediately relevant to get through the tests - sometimes no more subtle than multiple choice - gets taught. Soon we can barely remember the days when school included anything else - and an education in doubt, or argument, or beauty, or creativity gets swept away.
books i've read..
2013 [12 read]
2012 [36 read]
2011 [5 read]
2010 [6 read]
2009 [5 read]
2008 [21 read]
2007 [31 read]
2006 [37 read]
2005 [37 read]
2004 [32 read]
2003 [18 read]
2002 [52 read]
2001 [43 read]
2000 [7 read]
1999 [25 read]
1998 [3 read]
unknown year [65 read]

read over the years