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DAVID FOSTER WALLACE, IN HIS OWN WORDS A cache of over 40 letters reveals the artist’s humour and imagination ... From THE ECONOMIST online When René Magritte was 13 years old, his mother drowned herself in a local river. When the body was recovered her face was found to be covered with her nightdress. No one knew whether she had deliberately shielded her eyes from death or if the river current had simply veiled her face. Magritte had begun painting a year earlier. He would become obsessed with the hidden. For nearly a century fans of Magritte have studied his works, determined to find hidden meanings within them. The letters, most of which are undated and not included in the collection that was published in 1994, span more than 20 years and cover a wide range of topics—artistic, literary and surreal. Magritte had met the pretty Georgette Berger when they were both schoolchildren. The artist and the poet had met three years earlier and quickly became close friends. In writing, Magritte is unremittingly cheery.

Reinventing Homework: A Study of "Fires in the Mind" Have you ever considered the idea of reinventing homework? Easier said than done, of course. Nevertheless, consider Kathleen Cushman’s book Fires in the Mind. She asks students critical questions about education from their point of view. From the students’ comments in the chapter, they demonstrate that they know what alternatives to homework they need. Cushman’s students agreed that these common traits were a must: Purpose—There is no secret to what the goal is. The following suggestions were also offered as alternatives during a school day. in-class practice timehave a period specifically for academic supportindividual attention during an extended periodafter-school support Finally, they offered these tips for creating great alternatives to homework: Give students the opportunity to carve out their own path. We here at GDCF also advocate one other form of alternative homework, and that’s the flipped classroom.

The future is brighter than you think Peter Diamandis says too much focus is placed on negative newsHe says the truth is that the world is poised for abundance through innovationDiamandis: Social changes have vastly increased wealth, reduced disease and violenceHe says smart phones put knowledge, tools in the hands of billions around the world Editor's note: Peter Diamandis is an expert on innovation, the author of "Abundance," and founder and chief executive of the X PRIZE Foundation, a nonprofit focused on creating large incentive prizes to drive breakthroughs. He spoke at the TED2012 conference in February. TED is a nonprofit dedicated to "Ideas worth spreading" which it makes available through talks posted on its website (CNN) -- I've been talking to corporate groups a lot lately about the idea that the future is going to be better than many of us think -- that we will live in a world of abundance made possible by new technology. Here are some of the things that aren't getting attention: Peter Diamandis speaks at TED2012.

Philosophy and the Hippy Dream - Hippyland Hippies from A to Zby Skip Stone Hippy Philosophy and the Hippy Dream We are stardust, we are golden, and we've got to get ourselves back to the garden. Joni Mitchell/CS&N (Woodstock) So what do hippies want anyway? What is their utopian fantasy? We all want to change the world. How? It seems as though there's some kind of "land grab" going on, except it's not just land that people are grabbing, it's resources and power. It's a problem of too many people, diminishing resources, human greed, rampant consumerism, and massive development of the few remaining untouched places like the rainforests. I'm just beginning to see... Then on an individual basis, hippies maintain that we must get back in touch with that part of ourselves that we lost. Like a true Nature's child, we were born, born to be wild Steppenwolf (Born to be Wild) Many hippies consider themselves pagan. Gaian philosophy is an outgrowth of paganism. Man's shortsightedness is blinding him to the true nature of the world.

Sex Diaries Editor Gets Personally Inspired by the Diarists It began with the hedge fund guy who crossed state lines for sex. When I read his sex diary, my expectations were low; they sunk to a nadir when I opened the e-mail introducing his submission: I am a loyal reader, and this diary combines a decent week sexually with an insight into a complex psyche, if I say so myself. A self-centered finance guy. Joy. His was the 150th diary I'd read; the other 110 or so were by women in my demographic: late twenties, child-free, with the time and inclination to respond to my ads seeking diarists, usually spending a week hanging off various Manhattan and Brooklyn chandeliers, often fueled by a combination of alcohol, cocaine, and breakup. The finance guys were also all the same: pre-dawn CNBC market check, job, home, porn, sexting with women, not enough sleep—all of which they found fascinating. Overnight bag packed. Well. My modus operandi is simple. When my egg timer dinged, I kept reading. I told my shrink that I think I am a misogynist.

Postmodernism 1. Precursors The philosophical modernism at issue in postmodernism begins with Kant's “Copernican revolution,” that is, his assumption that we cannot know things in themselves and that objects of knowledge must conform to our faculties of representation (Kant 1787). Ideas such as God, freedom, immortality, the world, first beginning, and final end have only a regulative function for knowledge, since they cannot find fulfilling instances among objects of experience. With Hegel, the immediacy of the subject-object relation itself is shown to be illusory. As he states in The Phenomenology of Spirit, “we find that neither the one nor the other is only immediately present in sense-certainty, but each is at the same time mediated” (Hegel 1807, 59), because subject and object are both instances of a “this” and a “now,” neither of which are immediately sensed. Many postmodern philosophers find in Heidegger a nostalgia for being they do not share. 2. In “What is Postmodernism? 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Peter Weyland at TED2023: I will change the world Peter Weyland has been a magnet for controversy since he announced his intent to build the first convincingly humanoid robotic system by the end of the decade. Whether challenging the ethical boundaries of medicine with nanotechnology or going toe to toe with the Vatican itself on the issue of gene-therapy sterilization, Sir Peter prides himself on his motto, “If we can, we must.” After a three year media blackout, Weyland has finally emerged to reveal where he’s heading next. Wherever that may be, we will most certainly want to follow. Conceived and designed by Ridley Scott and Damon Lindelof and directed by Luke Scott. Sir Peter Weyland was born in Mumbai, India at the turn of the Millennium. In less than a decade, Weyland Corporation became a worldwide leader in emerging technologies and launched the first privatized industrial mission to leave the planet Earth.

Karl Marx 1. Marx’s Life and Works Karl Marx was born in Trier, in the German Rhineland, in 1818. Although his family was Jewish they converted to Christianity so that his father could pursue his career as a lawyer in the face of Prussia’s anti-Jewish laws. A precocious schoolchild, Marx studied law in Bonn and Berlin, and then wrote a PhD thesis in Philosophy, comparing the views of Democritus and Epicurus. The German Ideology, co-written with Engels in 1845, was also unpublished but this is where we see Marx beginning to develop his theory of history. The works so far mentioned amount only to a small fragment of Marx’s opus, which will eventually run to around 100 large volumes when his collected works are completed. 2. The intellectual climate within which the young Marx worked was dominated by the influence of Hegel, and the reaction to Hegel by a group known as the Young Hegelians, who rejected what they regarded as the conservative implications of Hegel’s work. 2.1 ‘On The Jewish Question’

40 Photo-Illustrated Questions to Refocus Your Mind Asking the right questions is the answer… It’s not the answers you get from others that will help you, but the questions you ask of yourself. Here are 40 thought-provoking questions to help you refresh and refocus your thinking: Please share your thoughts with us in the comments section below. Also, check out our sister site, Thought Questions, for more photo-illustrated questions like these; and check out The Book of Questions if you’re interested in reading even more inspiring, thought-provoking questions.Title photo by: Helga Weber For all other photo credits please refer to Related 40 Questions Everyone is Afraid to Ask Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers. April 13, 2012 In "Aspirations" 40 Questions that Will Quiet Your Mind Judge a person by their questions, rather than their answers … because asking the right questions is the answer. August 5, 2015 In "Happiness" 25 Photo-Illustrated Reminders to Help You Find Happiness

Rationalism vs. Empiricism 1. Introduction The dispute between rationalism and empiricism takes place within epistemology, the branch of philosophy devoted to studying the nature, sources and limits of knowledge. What is the nature of propositional knowledge, knowledge that a particular proposition about the world is true? The disagreement between rationalists and empiricists primarily concerns the second question, regarding the sources of our concepts and knowledge. 1.1 Rationalism To be a rationalist is to adopt at least one of three claims. The Intuition/Deduction Thesis: Some propositions in a particular subject area, S, are knowable by us by intuition alone; still others are knowable by being deduced from intuited propositions. Intuition is a form of rational insight. We can generate different versions of the Intuition/Deduction thesis by substituting different subject areas for the variable ‘S’. Rationalists also vary the strength of their view by adjusting their understanding of warrant. 1.2 Empiricism 2. 3.