conversation is an engine

A lot can happen in a conversation

Listentalk Chapter 1 Synopsis: The Preacher and the Farmer

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Conversation can be a scattered affair or it can be strategic.

The street preacher tosses out words that may pull in a passer-by. The street preacher might even aim and deliver those words to his mobile audience, hoping to bring some casual listener to a full stop. The farmer also tosses out seed and hopes for the best. It’s just that the farmer plants systematically, knowing she has given her seed the best environment for growth by choosing the well-drained plot of rich loam and cultivating it before planting.

Is dialogue more like words scattered by the street preacher or like words systematically implanted for growth by the strategic communicator? The moving parts of a conversation are put on display by an overview of philosophers Martin Buber, Emmanuel Levinas, JL Austin and John Searle. Context, content, character and intention all play a role in how our conversations move forward. Finally, observations about what makes for a good conversation, including thoughts on control, disruptions, rhetoric and the place of whimsy/serendipity.


Written by kirkistan

November 19, 2010 at 6:27 am

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