What I Mean…

Image of a person speaking into a can with a string coming out of the bottom.

Articulate:

  1. uttered clearly in distinct syllables.
  2. capable of speech; not speechless.
  3. using language easily and fluently; having facility with words: an articulate speaker.
  4. expressed, formulated, or presented with clarity and effectiveness: an articulate thought.
  5. made clear, distinct, and precise in relation to other parts: an articulate form; an articulate shape; an articulate area.
  6. (of ideas, form, etc.) having a meaningful relation to other parts: an articulate image.
  7. having parts or distinct areas organized into a coherent or meaningfulwhole; unified: an articulate system of philosophy.

When I have used the word “articulate” to describe someone, I’ve always meant that they can get their point across clearly and in a logically constructed manner (see 4, 5, and 7 above). Often I use it as a term of admiration for someone who has helped clarify and simplify my own thoughts on a complex subject. Through their vision, I add new language to my lexicon. Continue reading “What I Mean…”

“A ship in harbour is safe, but that is not what ships are built for”

Frequently attributed to Rear Admiral Grace Hopper, the titular words of wisdom sum up what intellectual curiosity and higher education are – or should be – all about.

Photo of a large sailing ship moving away from the camera. The sea is calm, the backdrop is of orange clouds.

Apparently the President of the United States agrees.

“Obama explained his belief that engaging with ideas you might disagree with is a foundational element of higher education.” 

“The purpose of college is not just… to transmit skills. It’s also to widen your horizons, to make you a better citizen,” Obama said. “The way to do that is to create a space where a lot of ideas are presented and collide, and people are having arguments, and people are testing each other’s theories. And over time, people learn from each other because they’re getting out of their own narrow point of view, and having a broad point of view.” Continue reading ““A ship in harbour is safe, but that is not what ships are built for””