Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Locke's Commonplace Books

I always wanted to write an entry on Locke's Commmonplace books, but never did. Here are two informative blog entries by others: One with the phrase information overload—an expression that I have come to loathe, and another that has references to other interesting sites.

I reserve the right to comment later on Stephen Berlin Johnson's lecture The Glass Box and the Commonplace Book. Just this now: I think that this claim is highly misleading: "The tradition of the commonplace book contains a central tension between order and chaos, between the desire for methodical arrangement, and the desire for surprising new links of association." There is no tension of this sort in the traditional commonplace book. In fact, this tension spells the end of common places.[1]

1. For more on this point, see Darnton on Commonplace Books.

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