Posted by: CJ | December 27, 2009

Minding your I’s and P’s

Understanding differences between myself and others is important to me. My own quest to overcome my own biases, I suppose. Your potential (and probability) of understanding situations and being correct in your actions is reduced when you don’t understand how the people involved (including myself) are different from you. So here’s today edition of that

I am usually a linear thinker. And I’m good about putting my thoughts into words. (Not always beautifully written or without quirks, but functional.) This is how I’ve been since I was very young. So I’ve always assumed that if someone can understand the ideas behind a topic and discuss them in a coherent way then they can write an essay on that topic.

This is, apparently, wrong.

First counter-example is IH. IH can understand the ideas behind a piece of pop-culture and discuss them (quite forcefully). But he has trouble organizing his ideas. Especially organizing them enough to write an outline of a paper. IH’s thought processes don’t flow in overly constrained patterns like that.

The second is P. P also understands ideas and can discuss them. He’s ok organizing his thought processes and writing outlines, too. But transforming the broad structure into writing is difficult for him.

This is good to know. I wonder in what other ways the process of going from topic to essay can go awry, especially which other ways that I wouldn’t have expected.

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