Information Services Office   19.1.2013

411

 
Newsletter No. 411 > Marginalia

Marginalia

previouspausenext

The Greek grammarian Didymus Chalcenterus (ca. 80–10 BC) was reputed to have written over 3,500 books in his lifetime, a feat that can hardly be surpassed even given today’s facility in the production and transmission of knowledge.

It is also from Didymus that we have the English word chalcenteric, referring to the suprahuman perseverance and steely resolve in getting things done. Try to imagine what it takes to write 3,500 books in one’s lifetime, as if it were statistically possible at all.

Nowadays, books, articles, blogs, etc., get published daily by the millions. Learning becomes an exercise in making distinctions of value and relevance from the vast ocean of information. This is what General Education Foundation Courses at CUHK sets out to achieve: to distil and instil from the chosen classics the essential habit of making enquiry and making sense in modern life.

The General Education Foundation Courses had been run in pilot for two years before formal implementation in the double cohort year as an integral part of the revamped University-wide curriculum. Though it may be premature to assess their effects and outcomes, some encouraging feedback is already in sight. We will let the teachers and the students speak for themselves.

Didymus was said to have written so many books that he often forgot what he had written previously and so contradicted himself. That he must have plagiarized himself at the expense of prolificacy is, to use a lexicon recently popularized by Brad Pitt, inevitable.

Back Issues

Latest 10 issues

2010s

2000s

2009–10

2008–09

2007–08

2006–07

2005–06

2004–05

2003–04

2002–03

2001–02

2000–01

1990s

1980s

Social Bookmarks

twitter   facebook   Google   Baidu   qq