Postman chose this title to purposely have a double meaning: that we'll have an end to successful public education if it doesn't have a meaningful end, or purpose, to it. In the first part of the book, he suggests some purposes that don't work: consumership, economic utility, technology, multiculturalism. He then suggests some overriding narratives that could work:
• "The spaceship earth"—viewing the earth as a planet we all share and thus need to take care of, beginning in our own communities.
• "The fallen angel"—an admittedly religious metaphor that recognizes that fallibility of humankind and our thinking; Postman notes that scientists, most of all, understand this: today's science is just today's understanding and can change tomorrow.
• "The American experiment"—"Can a nation be formed, maintained, and preserved on the principle of continuous argumentation?"
• "The law of diversity"—to recognize the "significant artistic, intellectual, and social contributions from diverse ethnic groups," not to raise one group above another but to enrich us all by gathering the best of ideas from all cultures.
•"The world weavers/the world makers"—"how we use language, how language uses us, and what measures are available to clarify our knowledge of the world we make."
- Unknown Binding
- Publisher: Vintage (1996)
- ASIN: B0184WW1R0
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