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How can you become more intelligent?   Share:  
Thrust of argument: Read a number of key works by Noam Chomsky, including books, articles, interviews, lectures and speeches. Direction of resistance / implied resistance: Is Noam Chomsky going to make you more intelligent by teaching you some great wisdom in these things?


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Removal of resistance: No, he's going to guide you with the scientific method through the pathway of enabling you to make yourself more intelligent, using time and resouces and your own abilities, once you have found your feet and the capacity to defend yourself against external influence and control (and it is, moreover, control which is largely aimed at deriving a profit for itself at your expense). Unification: You could discover the same basic capacity to be more intelligent through other sources also, perhaps as well as Chomsky - for example many of the things Richard Feynman talks about, particularly in his long lectures (don't just dip in and watch/read soundbites for meme-makers, read and watch and digest lots and lots and lots of what he says, that's going to give you many of the same things Chomsky's material will give you).

Entirely different styles of teaching and presentation of many or all of the same stuff can also, interestingly, be found in the works of Idries Shah, often very explicitly, so there's no doubt about what elements of it I'm talking about, if you are familiar with it.

No doubt the list goes on a great deal beyond this scattering of examples I am familiar with.

Apparently, as I have already quoted examples of on this 'grid', there is Robert Pirsig, who seems to say quite a lot of the same things.

And then there is music. The poet "Sting" just sang the words (in my headphones) "those who subjugate, those who violate, I'll be watching you."

That's another example of a direction from which all the same material can be found, presented in so many ways by so many people.

Think Peter Gabriel, for example. And so many others, in every culture, language and musical style.

So you have a lot of options - however, it may suit you best to read the Chomsky I have cited - he may be the most pertinent of the lot. And as well as Chomsky there is the late Alexander Cockburn and his motley crew of anti-establishment writers, a strange re-manifestation of Thomas Paine, some might say.

You may enjoy reading Cockburn, Chris Floyd, Vltchek and others, along with the Chomsky.

This may be the most easily accessible by you if what you are mostly used to is mainstream modern commercial/consumer culture.

There are facts these men and women (the list of journalists is long, try the link in the references below for some ideas) will tell you which are key and which you will be glad to have been exposed to.

"The Prisoner", starring Patrick McGoohan, along with "Rumpole of the Bailey", to some fairly large extent also present pretty much all of the same key things, but without providing a lot of the factual background which it may well help you to know (which you'll find, above all, in the Chomsky).

Perhaps it is time someone invented, if it doesn't exist, the word "Chomskyphobia" - that's what YOU have if you are too scared to EVER read any key Chomsky writings. If you want to check you really don't have Chomskyphobia, read "Necessary Illusions" - it's easy to read, once you kick off. It lays much bare and it is in fact concerned, very much, with "Chomskyphobia" itself, technically, when it comes down to it. The other book from that era, "Manufacturing Consent", I haven't yet read. No doubt I should.

Another book and film is Catch 22 by Joseph Heller. The film starred Alan Arkin. Orson Welles was in it - and many other big big stars. It is an amazing film.

Anyway, the list can no doubt go on and on and on and on in many directions - proving that there are plenty of ways for you to just spend the time and learn to be as intelligent as you can be. Whatever your tastes and skills, there is an in-road for you somewhere.

The writers Ionesco, Sartre and to an extent also Pirandello and Calvino, in their own amusing ways, have covered sections of this stuff too, but only sections, they came along quite early.

Use the link in the references below for a good list of potential sources, possible in-roads.

There's also Max Headroom, of course. The tv series. Check it out some time, if you can - and 'The Good Life' - an old British sitcom about 'self-sufficiency'.
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