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Saturday, June 18, 2005

em duas linguas - metaphorically speaking

Sometimes people ask why I don't write more em duas línguas. It occurs to me that em duas línguas is a metaphor for playing with identities in different communities which are represented by different languages. So blogging em duas línguas isn't only restricted to the physical act of writing in two languages.

Recently at two different conferences which represent two different international communities I belong to I was aware of the genre boundaries we are crossing in our work on communities, technologies and learning. The combination of different modes and technologies and a focus on emerging processes and diversity changes the whole nature of communication. It also changes our ways of of working together, what gets done, whose voices get heard, and where power lies. To survive it you have to develop a Zen-like robustness with the unsettling effects of communicating and learning in ways that expose your fragilities and the precariousness of human relationships. It deeply challenges all the securities that come with fixed roles, linear relationships and clear objectives.

Meanwhile, in my local community I have to develop another Zen-like robustness to help me through the quagmire of rules, norms and fixed expectations. The complexity of my universe here is to be found in the discovering or revealing of nests of relations and realities - unlike the complexity of my other world which revolves around designing or creating them. In fact, in this my segunda língua I see that technologies and learning are seen as ways of bringing solutions and imposing a new order on an existing world. Nowhere do I hear any discourse that acknowledges that their success lies in the disruptions to human relationships and hierarchies and all the implications of these disruptions.

So back to operating em duas línguas where I have two different worlds, two different identities and two different languages. And where "two" is only a metaphor for "more than one".


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