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murray asks a wonderful, necessary, very important question or
set of questions . . . i can only offer my own very personal, perhaps
even idiosyncratic answer
 
i got into this whole messy humanist/intellectual/academic racket in
the first place because [as an adolescent] i sensed that some things
mattered much more than others, and that some people had some
insight into what mattered, and why, that i myself did not have . . . and
it
drove me absolutely bananas that i didn't understand this stuff, whatever
it was . . . so i kept plugging at it, trying to figure out more
specifically
what it was that i didn't understand and how i might get some "wisdom"
[for so it seemed to me] about it . . . and i kept going at this long
enough that
someone gave me a degree and then i was caput and had no
choice but to start teaching . . . but the driving agenda all the time has
remained exactly the same: to understand what matters, and why
 
[it's probably for that reason that stuff that obviously doesn't matter, at
least in terms of the kinds of values i care about, stuff that
aims at "mere entertainment," elicits less anxiety for i don't feel in
danger
of being misled . . . but when something aspires to--or pretends to--a
higher
kind of achievement i start worrying
 
mike frank
 
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Screen-L is sponsored by the Telecommunication & Film Dept., the
University of Alabama.