The Art of Conversation

Photograph: Art in the Moco Museum, Amsterdam, April 2019

“A corporation is just a set of rules, and so is software. It’s all code, and doesn’t care about people, our priorities, our future unless we bother to program those concerns into it.

It is therefore useful, particularly in a rapidly changing media environment, to look at corporations as they were forms of media: programs written by people at a particular moment in history in order to accomplish specific goals.”

Douglas Rushkoff

“What is conversation?

The original word from Latin means: ‘To live with, to share with, to commune with.’

It’s a sharing of thought and an exploration of thought.

It’s unique in that it’s a shared undertaking. You cannot converse alone. It requires a group.

It is a cooperative venture.

The idea of a conversation is to cooperatively explore ideas, emotions and feelings and to arrive some place or to have realizations that you otherwise would not be able to. It actually requires other people to help build some or create something which on your own or the other participants would not arrive at.

It’s a way of externalizing cooperative skills.

It is a very tricky and difficult skill.”

“You learn by talking. You learn by seeing. You learn by interacting.”

The written component of that is always considered to be of secondary importance.”

“It’s a sharing. The true spirit of conversation consists of building on another person’s observation, not overturning it. (You can’t build together if you constantly knocking each other’s stuff.)

“Franklin on the great secret at succeeding in conversation:

To admire little but hear much.

Always to distrust our own reason, and sometimes that of our friends.

Never pretend to wit, but pretend that of others as much as we possibly can.

To harken to what is said and to answer to the purpose.”

“A good conversationalist helps you figure out your ideas.”

It is a form of self-expression that is reached co-operatively and would be impossible to achieve on your own.”

Wes Cecil (on the use of Philosophy for Living)