Sunday, March 15, 2015

#74 / Make A Meeting

The graphic above, from a blog entry titled "Meetings Suck," may convey what many think. Let me provide a counterpunch. 

Amor Mundi, the weekly newsletter published by the Hannah Arendt Center at Bard College, recently referenced a speech by Peter Railton, a professor of philosophy at the University of Michigan. You can get a copy of Railton's talk, given as the John Dewey Lecture at the American Philosophical Association Meeting this year, by clicking this link

Here's what Railton had to say about meetings: 

Much that was unjust and wretched about our society remains so—and here, so near to Ferguson, we can hardly forget this, or the obligations it entails. Neither can we ignore the growing inequality that threatens fundamental democratic values. But many institutions and practices have been profoundly changed. As the folk saying mentioned by Lucius Outlaw in his Dewey Lecture has it, while society “ain’t all it might be, and ain’t all it should be, it damned sure ain’t what it used to be.” But some things haven’t changed: Oscar Wilde is still right—because the cost of building a society where the people have more say in how their lives are run is still many, many meetings. What is a meeting, after all, but people deliberating together with a capacity to act as a group that is more than just a sum of individual actions, and this sort of informed joint action is a precondition for significant social change.

Make a meeting.

Change the world.

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