Me, We

I’m not always so good at sharing my presentation materials because a lot of what I do is improvised at the moment.  I rarely, if ever, have a prepared talk about a specific topic, but develop a conceit around which to frame some ideas I have been thinking about.

For the West Virginia Higher Education Technology Conference here in Morgantown, West Virgina I am framing my presentation around the conference theme “weLearn” using a clip from Leon Gast’s 1996 documentary When We Were Kings (1996), which frames the figure of Muhammad Ali through his 1973 boxing match with George Foreman in Zaire referred to as “The Rumble in the Jungle.” It’s a brilliant documentary, but I focus specifically one one scene, the very last scene, wherein George Plimpton discusses Ali’s poem “Me, we.” It’s fascinating not only because he argues it is the shortest poem in the English language, but also as a way to frame the man.  I wanted to take that poem to frame the web, and how we are using it at UMW Blogs and Looking or Whitman, so the following presentation is my attempt.  As is always the case, there is very little text and a bunch of videos and images, but I imagine you may get the idea, it is still too long so I have to edit it down, but the first four slides and the final one which is a concluding poem from Whitman “I hear it was charged against me” to bookend the presentation with another poem, which I think suggests what I might be arguing for with the “me we” figure 😉

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5 Responses to Me, We

  1. Cole says:

    Slides look killer and I really love to me, we approach. In so many ways our initiatives are blurring into one approach — getting people to add their voice to a collective conversation. I am so psyched to see it moving towards something open and social related to learning — and doesn’t learning require that social exchange? My only regret is that I didn’t know you were going to Morgantown for the event … I was originally planning to go for a few reasons — as a WVY grad I was really excited about going and reconnecting, but in the end didn’t figure I’d find people to really connect to. Damn it, Rev … we gotta get our mid-Atlantic calendars synced up.

    While you are there, find your way into Crocket’s in Star City … you will not regret it. Also, the Boston Beanery is a worthy spot! Say hi to the place for me!

  2. This presentation looks awesome, and I know it’ll be a great talk, but, in my professional opinion, you need more action figures.

  3. Reverend says:

    I wish I would have told you as well, it would have been a blast hanging out here and doing the late night craziness. I will be sure never to let you down again, and it is stupid because I know you went to WVU, but I assumed you’d be under the weight of the semester. Shame on me is right, and hat a missed opportunity. “Damn it!” is right.

    @Action Jackson,

    You’re right, it would have been a perfect moment for these two action figures:

  4. Cole says:

    How long are you there? State College *could* be on the way home!

  5. Reverend says:

    I am here until tomorrow afternoon, then I go home and try and close on a house! When are you going to invite me to PSU so I can get drunk with you? BTW, I checked out Morgantown tonight and loved it, the Rapid Personal Transit Cars are sick, so 70s scifi. I want a system like that.

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