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Old 10-28-2008, 05:58 PM   #61
Patricia
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Could be, PilotBob.
Some philosophers are taking Star Trek quite seriously, and are using it as a way of explaining concepts to students. There's even a book: Star Trek and Philosophy: The Wrath of Kant.
http://www.amazon.com/Star-Trek-Phil.../dp/0812696492
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Old 10-28-2008, 07:53 PM   #62
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Could be, PilotBob.
Some philosophers are taking Star Trek quite seriously, and are using it as a way of explaining concepts to students. There's even a book: Star Trek and Philosophy: The Wrath of Kant.
http://www.amazon.com/Star-Trek-Phil.../dp/0812696492
But why use a Star Trek TV-series when you can use a good TV series and read Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Philosophy
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Old 10-28-2008, 10:08 PM   #63
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Could be, PilotBob.
Some philosophers are taking Star Trek quite seriously, and are using it as a way of explaining concepts to students. There's even a book: Star Trek and Philosophy: The Wrath of Kant.
http://www.amazon.com/Star-Trek-Phil.../dp/0812696492
No surprise: the first step is reaching the students, and giving them something they can grasp to take the next step in discovery. If Star Trek provides a hook to hang subsequent teaching on, why not?

I was bemused a couple of years ago, when I met a woman who taught English at a community college in what her boyfriend described as a "mill town". Her students seldom read, and celebrity bios of popular sports or entertainment figures tended to be the height of their literary attempts. Yet the work of the late Octavia Butler (SF writer and MacArthur Grant winner) connected with them. I wondered what about her work attracted them, and she wasn't sure, save that Olivia's work tended to be about outsiders, and these kids were - they were in a depressed area with slim chance of escaping a marginal existence, and knew it. I knew Olivia slightly, and I think she'd have been delighted that her work reached them.
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Old 10-28-2008, 11:56 PM   #64
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Three books for fine art photographers

Zen and the Art of Archery
by Eugene Herrigel

Art and Fear
by David Bayles and Ted Orland

The Daybooks of Edward Weston
by Edward Weston

Three very fine books for all creative people.
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Old 10-29-2008, 01:03 AM   #65
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Interesting thread.

For me, the first thing that comes to mind is anything by Neil Postman, but especially Amusing Ourselves to Death. I was 15 when I read it, staying at my grandparents' house, and picked it up because I was having trouble sleeping and it was a book on my bedside table from the last visitor. At that age I'd never gotten around to thinking that in the social sciences there are few hard "truths", that the way in which an issue is framed influences the way it is interpreted, and indeed that the way in which we approach an issue can determine the conclusions we reach about it.

I'm not sure I'd agree with Postman's politics 100%, but I credit his books with getting me interested in thinking about thinking, which I guess was the trigger for my convoluted academic wanderings.
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Old 10-29-2008, 05:07 AM   #66
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Matt Savinar - The Oil Age is Over
Nassim Nicholas Taleb - The Black Swan
Kurt Vonnegut - Slaugtherhouse Five / Breakfast of Champions
Desmond Morris - The Naked Ape

These will change you, especially the first.

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Old 10-29-2008, 10:20 AM   #67
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But why use a Star Trek TV-series when you can use a good TV series and read Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Philosophy
Buffy was popular with horny males because they thought Geller was hot. That's why it was popular. If it had to do with the stories, it would have tanked.
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Old 10-29-2008, 10:52 AM   #68
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Buffy was popular with horny males because they thought Geller was hot. That's why it was popular. If it had to do with the stories, it would have tanked.
You are so wrong that is is impossible to answer you. But if you like Star Trek and thinks it have good stories then you value system is totally different from mine. Buffy was popular because of the writing that assumed that the audience had some intelligence. It still has better writing then most series today.
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Old 10-29-2008, 03:45 PM   #69
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Ok,
You are both wrong... both Star Trek and Buffy at their best were excellent television with good stories and thought provoking ideas (for their time, even quite subversive). However, both shows had more than a few episodes that were... shall we say less than watchable. One can like either series, both series or neither series without it saying one whit about the individual other than their taste in television.

--
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Old 10-29-2008, 03:48 PM   #70
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And then Joss Wheadon did something amazing, sort of combined the two and created Firefly... To bad the people with the purse couldnt understand how fantastic Firefly was.
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Old 10-29-2008, 04:07 PM   #71
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I watched, and still do, the original Star Trek episodes over and over again. Granted, by todays standards, sometimes the episodes seem a little silly. But the story lines were usually 'good against evil', weren't they? Sometimes the humans were good, sometimes the aliens were.

My granddaughter, now in her early 20's, was fanatical about Buffy when it came on. A large group of her female friends were too. It had nothing to do with Geller, it was the stories. I personally didn't care for the series, I think it was a generational thing.

Seeing as one show was about magic, and one about space travel, how can the two possibly be compared?

Both had their fanatical followers....in their time.

Using either in a college class setting to me would be just ......sad. Is this what higher education has sunk to? (Just my opinion..)
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Old 10-29-2008, 04:19 PM   #72
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The original Trek was included in an Arthurian college course I took. It had the elements: Bold idealistic leader, faithful companions, chivalry, courtly love, the whole enchilada.
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Old 10-29-2008, 04:21 PM   #73
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And then Joss Wheadon did something amazing, sort of combined the two and created Firefly... To bad the people with the purse couldnt understand how fantastic Firefly was.
How fantastic it would be was irrelevant to their decision. It's all about the ratings, and the revenue generated. The best TV show in the world will get canceled after three episodes if the ratings aren't good.

I thought the best show on TV at the time, period, was Joe Straczynski's Babylon 5. But every season, there was the question of whether it would get renewed, and it's a minor miracle it lasted the full five seasons. (I think Season 5 was weak because Joe faced the possibility of not getting a renewal, and took steps to largely wrap the story up in Season 4 because of that. I sometimes wonder how things would have been had Joe known he did have Season 5 to work in.)

And Joe had the additional complication that B5 was made for the syndication market, and sold to stations not affiliated with a larger network. As time went on, there were less and less independent stations to sell to, as more and more affiliated with someone, and the time slot was used by network programming.

TV is a mass market medium. I consider a decent genre show to be a happy exception to the general mediocre quality of programming. Genre shows in in SF, pretty much by definition, have higher production costs and smaller audiences.
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Old 10-29-2008, 05:25 PM   #74
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The best TV show in the world will get canceled after three episodes if the ratings aren't good.
Try looking up the show Wonderfalls sometime. I still mourn it.

-MJ
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Old 10-29-2008, 05:52 PM   #75
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Try looking up the show Wonderfalls sometime. I still mourn it.

-MJ
I'm aware of it. I suspect everyone here could come up with shows that were wonderful, but just never got a large enough audience.
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