Deserving a facepalm

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Mefiante (January 26, 2015, 16:36:02 PM):
I must say I'm excited to hear that Ms Nkonyeni's is in favour of including philosophy in the school curriculum. With some training in basic critical thinking techniques…
Sure, if you take Nkonyeni’s use of the terms “philosophy” and “critical thinking” at face value. I’m a bit sceptical that one can do so with confidence, though. Based on her evident naïveté in related matters, I have more than a passing suspicion that she thought those were catchy terms to bandy about, that her conception of “philosophy” would primarily include such precepts as ancestor worship, bone throwing and muti, and that her “critical thinking” is probably centred on the idea of always obeying the tribal chief and elders even if you disagree with them.

Apologies for sounding negative and cynical, and I do await the pleasant surprise of some facts contrary to expectation.

'Luthon64
Brian (January 26, 2015, 21:23:31 PM):
By definition "critical thinking' is anathema to politicians who want a compliant, unquestioning voter public. Too many questions are not their thing: ask our Public Protector
brianvds (January 27, 2015, 04:24:21 AM):
I must say I'm excited to hear that Ms Nkonyeni's is in favour of including philosophy in the school curriculum. With some training in basic critical thinking techniques…
Sure, if you take Nkonyeni’s use of the terms “philosophy” and “critical thinking” at face value. I’m a bit sceptical that one can do so with confidence, though. Based on her evident naïveté in related matters, I have more than a passing suspicion that she thought those were catchy terms to bandy about, that her conception of “philosophy” would primarily include such precepts as ancestor worship, bone throwing and muti, and that her “critical thinking” is probably centred on the idea of always obeying the tribal chief and elders even if you disagree with them.

And be critical of apartheid. Don't forget to always be critical of apartheid. :-)

One of the teachers at the school where I work has a degree in philosophy, and the stuff he tells the kids makes my hair stand on end. Lucky thing he teaches English rather than science. :-)
Rigil Kent (January 27, 2015, 06:44:32 AM):
Yes, it's hard to know exactly what Nkonyeni’s personal idea of philosophy/ critical thinking is, but if the subject is introduced, then it's likely that the course content will be set by a group of individuals who know what they're on about.


Rigil
Mefiante (January 27, 2015, 08:05:18 AM):
Well, she is after all the KZN education MEC, and so she would have significant input into the matter. Indeed, I think that’s the main reason the incident has caused such a stir. Had a more junior provincial education functionary made those remarks, it’s unlikely to have provoked such widespread condemnation.

'Luthon64

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