Friday, September 18, 2009

Many years ago Howard Gardner described our "multiple intelligences." I found his work deeply affirmative of the choice I had made early in my adult life to give precedence to my auditory mind. Formal education, it seemed to me, was organized primarily by visual and verbal experience. These were not the areas that mattered most to me. I made the choice to go with the ear--my own and that of others.

Now, many years later, I find that the formality of education begins already in pre-school with its over-emphasis on multiple choices (that is, tests) based on visual and verbal experience. In the meantime I have staked my entire life and career on the proposition that the auditory intelligence is one that binds people to one another in many powerful ways, not at all comparable to the visual or the verbal. This is not to put down the latter two; just to maintain that they are different.

How odd to realize that what I have felt all along to be most central to life is now considered "far out."