blake at gaudaprime.co.uk
Fri Dec 31 14:51:15 EST 2004
Me/Paul (sorry, have been away, just getting back to email now):
>> Chrestomanci Chrestomanci Chrestomanci...
>> Ahem. Sorry. But seriously, I think he'd be an excellent theory
> Really? I seem to recall he was a terrible theory *student*.
> So was Cat, come to think of it, and for much the same reason.
> (Enchanters do it instinctively, so they don't *need* the theory.)
That's probably why I think he'd be a good teacher (particularly for Cat,
who I overidentify with - I seem to remember that the reason Christopher,
rather than Michael Saunders, is teaching Cat theory is because he's an
enchanter so he *gets* how hard it is for Cat). I find the stuff I
understand instinctively to be the hardest to teach: I just keep putting
my hand across the table plaintively saying "Can't you see it *now*?", as
it were, until the students have no choice but to lie "Oh, yes, sir. I see
it now. It's your hand, not a lion's paw at all."
Also, I suspect Chrestomanci would have a fairly sarky, uninvolved
approach to teaching, which would suit me. I like teachers who leave you
mostly alone to do the comprehension-level stuff on your own, and only
really want to talk to you about things once you know enough to have an
*interesting* conversation about them. Which is pretty much how
Chrestomanci treats Cat throughout Charmed Life - leaves him alone until
they're both in the same amount of trouble <g>. Hopefully it would work
better in a teacher/pupil situation than in a guardian/ward one.
>> Oh, though, my Head of Department is exactly like Corkoran - a
>> charismatic careerist who strolls into lectures, talks off the top
>> of his head for an hour, tells the students a lot of lies*
>> *Sample: "In Greek, there is the same word for 'writing' and
>> 'painting'. That word is 'pharmakon'."
> If that's a genuine example, do you mind telling the Greek-deprived
> among us what's wrong with it?
Not at all - sorry. The Greek word for "write" is "grapho". I don't know
the Greek word for "paint" off the top of my head, and it may well be the
same as the word for write ("making marks on surfaces"), but it's not
"pharmakon", which means "drug". My Corkoran-avatar is actually garbling a
long and complicated essay by Derrida, "Plato's Pharmacy", which traces
all the instances in a Platonic dialogue where the word *pharmakon* is
used metaphorically in relation to writing. (So he's wrong about the
theory he's supposed to be teaching, as well as about the details of
Greek, which matter less to second-year cultural studies students).
Also, he marks like Corkoran, except that I doubt even our heroes' essays
would slow him down...
"The White Cobra will take great pleasure in the black velvet mole."
- *Avon: A Terrible Aspect*.
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