Eclectic Curiosity

Posted on January 20th, 2004, by Steve Hardy in Archives, Uncategorized. No Comments

The Psychedelic Tourist offers some very kind words to CG – thank you – and adds a nice viewpoint on the whole generalist sentiment.

“Jack of all trades, Master of none”

It’s a derogatory term, it’s meant to point out that knowing a little about a lot is second-rate to knowing a lot about a little. More specifically it points to the dilemma of generalization versus specialization. Currently, in today’s world, our society tends to look up to those specialists, the ones who know a lot about a little. Society admires the person who is ultra-driven, dedicated, to an almost obsessive nature about one thing. It tends to bring material wealth and recognition to the individual. It brings adulation, envy, it gives them power. It provides a status in society which I don’t feel is necessarily warranted. Ultimately, it’s narrow-minded, it reeks of arrogance.

On the other hand, to be a generalist is to keep one’s eyes open. To see all, or much, of the world. To attempt a synthesis of divergent thoughts, divergent realities, to attempt a holistic view. It means that one can feel comfortable with many varied topics, but not necessarily to be the expert in any one thing. Are times changing? Is the generalist about to receive their due? I can’t really say, but it’s worth a thought. It keeps the dream alive, that it is good to dabble in many things, to think about many different topics, to keep oneself fresh by constantly searching for new and unseen horizons.

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