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In the broad and final sense all institutions are educational in the
sense that they operate to form the attitudes, dispositions, abilities
and disabilities that constitute a concrete personality...Whether this
educative process is carried on in a predominantly democratic or non-
democratic way becomes, therefore, a question of transcendent importance
not only for education itself but for its final effect upon all the
interests and activites of a society that is committed to the democratic
way of life.
- John Dewey (1859-1953), American philosopher
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History shows that the human mind, fed by constant accessions of knowledge,
periodically grows too large for its theoretical coverings, and bursts
them asunder to appear in new habiliments, as the feeding and growing
grub, at intervals, casts its too narrow skin and assumes another...
Truly the imago state of Man seems to be terribly distant, but every
moult is a step gained.
- Charles Darwin, from "Origin of the Species"
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...I would go so far as to suggest that, were it not for our ego and
concern to be different, the African apes would be included in our
family, the Hominidae.
- Richard Leakey
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It is inconceivable that a judicious observer from another solar system
would see in our species -- which has tended to be cruel, destructive,
wasteful, and irrational -- the crown and apex of cosmic evolution.
Viewing us as the culmination of *anything* is grotesque; viewing us
as a transitional species makes more sense -- and gives us more hope.
- Betty McCollister, "Our Transitional Species",
Free Inquiry magazine, Vol. 8, No. 1
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"Well, you see, it's such a transitional creature. It's a piss-poor
reptile and not very much of a bird."
- Melvin Konner, from "The Tangled Wing", quoting a zoologist who has
studied the archeopteryz and found it "very much like people"
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"You need tender loving care once a week - so that I can slap you into shape."
- Ellyn Mustard
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"It may be that our role on this planet is not to worship God but to
-Arthur C. Clarke
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"Why should we subsidize intellectual curiosity?"
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"There is nothing new under the sun, but there are lots of old things
we don't know yet."
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"Plan to throw one away. You will anyway."
- Fred Brooks, "The Mythical Man Month"