Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

This is a good set of reflections that anyone saying 'markets are conversations' or 'learning is a conversation' should read. Though the best advice concerns things like speech acts and power dynamics, the most useful bit may be right at the start where some common conceptions about language and communication are refuted: first, the idea that "successful conversations (are) those that moved the relevant cluster of ideas from one conversant's head to another," and second, that "words (are) straightforwardly labels for things in the world." Conversation is much more complex than a mere exchange of information; it is an interactive performance between two or more participants that combines (at the very least) meaning, context, relationships and power.

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada
stephen@downes.ca

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Last Updated: Sept 13, 2022 2:05 p.m.