187 Sourced quotes
The present book is not a methodology of mathematics in the sense that I will systematically show how some teaching matter should taught; it is not even a systematic analysis of subject matter. I hardly ever refer to well-organized classroom experiments evaluated by statistical methods, nor do I cite experimental results of developmental psychology or the psychology of learning. Maybe the most striking feature is that this book contains few quotations. I will try to justify all these features.
In this crazy mirror of terror and art a pseudo-quotation made up of obscure Shakespeareanisms (Chapter Three) somehow produces, despite its lack of literal meaning, the blurred diminutive image of the acrobatic performance that so gloriously supplies the bravura ending for the next chapter.
I do not by any means want to deny that I and my fellow workers selected news and quotations following a certain tendency. It is the curse of propaganda during war that one works only with black and white. But to my knowledge it is a mistake to believe that in the Propaganda Ministry thousands of little lies were hatched out. If we had lied on a thousand small things, the enemy would have been able to deal with us more easily than was the case.
Ralph Keyes calls quotation collectors "quotographers," the men and women who gather catchwords, watchwords, war words, winged words, maxims, mottos, sayings, and quips into books of a thousand pages. Through the centuries quotation collectors have saved quotations that would otherwise be lost.
Treatment of the apparently whimsical fluctuations of the stock quotations as truly non stationary processes requires a model of such complexity that its practical value is likely to be limited. An additional complication, not encompassed by most stock market models, arises from the manifestation of the market as a nonzero sum game.
It is surprising to see what superficial, inconsequential reasonings satisfy the most part of mankind. A piece of wit, a jest, a simile, or a quotation of an Author, passes for a mighty argument.... This weakness and effeminacy of mankind in being persuaded where they are delighted, have made them the sport of orators, poets, and men of wit.
I am extremely pleased by Daniel Fincke's article, which says exactly what I SHOULD have said and, to my regret, didn't make sufficiently clear in my Reason Rally speech. The best way to summarise it would be to modify the quotation from Johann Hari. Johann said, "I respect you too much to respect your ridiculous beliefs". From now on, my version will be, "I respect you too much to accept that you really believe anything so ridiculous as you claim. Please either defend those beliefs and explain why they are not ridiculous, or else declare that you do not hold them and publicly disown the church to which you claim loyalty."
So, with due thanks to those great heroes, the ancient authorities, we can now move on with a more cheerful heart to the rest of Presocratic philosophy. Many of the Presocratics' words are lost, but we may still catch a glimpse of their strange forgotten worlds, woven into a splendid patchwork of ancient quotations and interpretations.