Reading Monica Szewczyk’s “Art of Conversation, Part 1:”

What if conversation is understood not as the space of seeing (recognizing each other), but of coming to terms with certain forms of blindness (the acknowledgment of non-knowledge)?


2 thoughts on “

  1. This is actually very similar to what Jacques Ranciere says should be the purpose of education: a process of realizing what you don’t yet know that you don’t know, but which others might know, and how you can learn from one another to fill in those areas of non-knowledge. A more dynamic, give-and-take process, rather than there being a clear-cut flow of knowledge from the master to her pupil.

  2. I am not sure I am understanding Szewczyk totally, but she is making an argument against coming to an understanding in favour of a neutraility that questions signifcation and representation, thereby extending indeterminacy indefinately. This neutraility is indifferent to the binary of dialectics.

    The acknowledgement of non-knowledge does not give way to recognition and understanding, which I think is what Ranciere proposes (I’ve only read a very small part of The Ignorant Schoolmaster).

    Szewczyk is suggesting instead that conversation is productive when interruption and rupture give way to plurality. In this way, maybe, conversation is coming to a greater understanding of your position in relation the infinity of others.

    Again, I’m not sure I follow Szewczyk, but I think I (kind of) understand what she’s getting when I think it through a negative perspective: if conversation is world-making, then neutraility de-mans certain ideas or people by making them irrelevant.

    Shit man, I’m not even sure I understand this. But maybe this is the point…?

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