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5 C O N V E R S A T I O N S Conversazione is an Italian term that became fashionable throughout elite society in eighteenth- century Europe as a means of describing the practice of sociable, often literary, conversation among both men and women (Unfer Lukoschik, 39– 47; Tinker 102– 22). These discussions were known by many names (ruelles, soirées, cercles, sociétés, crocchi, ästhetische Tees) and came to be referred to collectively as “salons” by the mid- nineteenth century, when they had become primarily objects of nostalgia (Lilti). The term salon

93 | 45 matt saunders josiah mcelheny two conversations JOSIAH MCELHENY: Let’s start from the basics. At the beginning you’re working one-to-one, meaning that you’re drawing with ink on a transparent medium, and then making a direct silver gelatin contact print from that. MATT SAUNDERS: Exactly. I have an original picture—something I’ve collected—and I’m looking at that print, trying to imagine what the negative must have looked like, and draw that. Once I’ve made my own “negative” in this way, I set it on piece of photo paper, turn on the lights, and it makes

Transforming Traditions of Teaching and Learning

SIN • • • • Structuring Curricular Conversations Curricular conversations are meant to be occasions for learn- ing; although not spontaneous, they can be engaging. The topic of conversation is usually introduced by the teacher, but the details of the curriculum may be negotiated among the class participants. (Even the most comprehensive proposals for a fully negotiated curriculum begin with a general direction for conversation, even if it is as broad as "the teaching of En- glish" or "contemporary literature"; see Mayher 1990, pp. 263ff.) As the

POUR • • • • Curriculum as Conversation In previous chapters, I have explored the significant role that various traditions of discourse play in social and individual life. I have also examined how education has twisted those traditions, turning them from powerful forms of knowledge-in- action into powerless systems of knowledge-out-of-context. The problem for the present chapter is to consider how tradi- tions might be construed more constructively in the context of schooling. My starting point is to recognize that classroom discourse plays a critical

5 Private Conversations 115 Conversation is a form of relationship, not just a form of speech. Although its bearing on privacy may seem obscure, like other social conventions it can lend itself to self-disguise, thus cutting its participants off from one another rather than connecting them. Like the subject of privacy, that of conversation raises issues about the relation between interests of a com- munity at large and those of the individuals it includes. I propose to engage the relation between the two subjects by way of a preliminary survey of conversational

297 Reminds me of Washington; just different names, different faces. henry kissinger, after attending the premiere of The Godfather1 Put it like this: two people—Richard Nixon and Travis Bickle—got away with things in the mid-seventies in ways that should not have passed. david thomson, Beneath Mulholland THE CONVERSATION 11 On June 23, 1972, Richard Nixon kicked off another Camp David weekend the way he liked best, with an after-dinner Western. Hang ’Em High must have seemed made to order for Nixon’s tastes: 114 minutes of Clint Eastwood seeking retribution

realized that my new ac- quaintances in the Nigerian town where I was doing local field- work often had their own imaginative horizons far beyond town INTRODUCTION Conversations with Correspondents 1 limits. That West African experience became a point of departure for a series of inquiries, during the years that followed, into the ways anthropologists, as sociocultural theorists and as ethnographers, might view various aspects of global interconnectedness.1 I thought and wrote about the cultural role of world cities, about the uses of network analysis in conceptualizing

27 Bookend Conversations The year I started working on this book, our younger son, Oisín, turned eighteen. On the night of his birthday, my wife and I attended a variety show at his high school for which he was a senior writer. He had not divulged beforehand which sketches he had written, but I correctly guessed most of them. The more absurdist sketches were his. In one, for instance, a math teacher informs a reluctant student about how useful he is likely to find algebra in his future life. We then saw a series of vignettes of the student yelling out

C h a p t e r 2 1 IT ’S A CONVERSATION! Trevor Pinch The overwhelming impression from reading through the contributions to this volume is not only the temperate tone but also the growing sense that we are in a real conversation. There is a well-known finding in the field of conversation analysis that participants in conver- sations display a proclivity to end in agreement. The sense of moving toward agreement which one finds in the first round of contributions is surely further indication that a real conversation is taking place. That a conversation is a social