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Opinion

  • The Clark and Mass MoCA Stiff Locals

    Negligible Off Season Free Admissions

    By: Charles Giuliano - Dec 18th, 2014

    As of January One the Clark will no longer be free during the off season. It is offering token free days but adult admission is full freight at $20. Add another $10 to see special exhitions. Which is still more generous than Mass MoCA which has a single annual free day. It sends the wrong PR and marketing message to the local community. What price can you put on being a welcoming good neighbor?

  • Gorbachev Tear Down The Veil

    Seeking Knowledge or Understanding

    By: David Zaig - Dec 11th, 2014

    There is no easy short answer: the difference between knowledge and understanding is not so obvious at first, but if you think about it a little, you will find, for instance, that knowing about hieroglyphics does not mean we understand them.

  • Words Matter

    The Value of Education

    By: Stephen Rifkin - Nov 16th, 2014

    People who make money are successful. They are sometimes well educated, and sometimes not, but they are smart. They are smart enough to be successful in the way most of us value success.

  • The Limits of Our Education System

    Functioning in Flatland

    By: David Zaig - Nov 07th, 2014

    We had to teach ourselves and share what we have learned with the rest of the class. Apia, the beautiful brown girl I mentioned earlier, is back in town.

  • Can One Idiot Learn from Another

    What You Don't Know About Quantum Mechanics Does Help You

    By: David Zaig - Sep 21st, 2014

    Knowledge doesn’t limit us or take away the beauty and mystery of the world—it actually enhances our view of the world and should make us stronger and more tolerant.

  • Boston Mayah Walsh on the Arts

    Reply to Larry Stark

    By: Joyce Linehan - Sep 16th, 2014

    Veteran Boston theatre critic Larry Stark wrote an open letter to Boston Mayor Martin Walsh. He stated his disappointment that campaign promises to the arts community were soon forgotten. We posted his original letter which is linked in this reply from the Mayor's spokesperson longtime arts advocate Joyce Linehan.

  • Are Humans Becoming Stupider

    IQ Scores Have Declined 14 Points Since the 19th Century

    By: David Zaig - Sep 09th, 2014

    The reason why humans are getting stupider is because we think we are immutable. In the grand scheme of things, we are as primitive as an amoeba trying to build a brain. Some think our brain has reached its peak. Evolution is either too slow or becoming ineffective. Now we are on our own.

  • Unexamined Life Isn't Worth Living

    But Not By IQ Tests

    By: Stephen Rifkin - Sep 09th, 2014

    Schools used to assign children to classes based on their IQ test scores. Then schools decided it was better for children to be in heterogeneous, or mixed IQ, classes. They would get a better feel for life because many people are not so fast. Now experts may be reconsidering. It is one of the truisms of fashion, and there are intellectual fashions, too, that they change. Here Rifkin again rebuts Zaig.

  • Outside The Machine

    Waxing Philosophical

    By: Stephen Rifkin - Sep 03rd, 2014

    There has been a lively response to the provocative series of think pieces by the Berkshire artist David Zaig. Here the Berkshire poet Stephen Rifkin debates Zaig's contentions. They often sit at the same table during weekly Monday night Chinese dinners in North Adams. Rifkin recently gave a poetry reading at the Rudd Art Museum where Zaig is currently exhibiting his work.

  • The Freud Machine

    Taking Responsibility for Opinions We Promulgate

    By: David Zaig - Sep 02nd, 2014

    As an artist, I learned to understand that in this world of ours we humans must take responsibility for the opinions we promulgate: that means, ideally, we ought to search for the data to support what we say. We take notions such as subjectivity, creativity, feelings, or likes and dislikes for granted. Let’s not forget that, first, these notions are words--words we inherited and use automatically, words that can be skewed when translated into action, and as such misrepresent and distort our perception of the world.

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