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A friend of mine participated in the design of the F-14 engine AND craft and he is never this obtuse — if ever obtuse at all — as what is described in the following, as regards an individual (feminist!) named “Carolyn Guertin”.

I laughed aloud while wading through this. If ever a woman needed less cats, following is a story about one (or, why academics without reason is bad).

From David Thompson, “PEDDLING STUPIDITY – Or, the postmodern scholarship of “radical cyber-feminist” Carolyn Guertin.

…Space crops up quite a bit in Guertin’s dissertation, as do various mathematical, quantum mechanical and geometric terms, the bulk of which are misused in a series of strained and incoherent metaphors. In keeping with many purveyors of postmodern theorising, Guertin has been careful to appropriate fragments of scientific terminology that sound fashionable and exciting, and uses them with no apparent regard for their meaning or relevance. (Entanglement and Hilbert Space are mentioned casually, with no explanation, and for no discernible reason.) Consequently, it’s difficult to fathom the author’s supposed intention, or to determine exactly how far short of that objective her efforts have fallen. Instead, we’re presented with what amounts to a collage of grandiose jargon, habitual non sequitur and unrelated subject matter — including feminism, web browsing and space-time curvature — bolted together by little more than chutzpah:

“Within quantum mechanics, the science of the body in motion, the intricacies of the interiorities of mnemonic time — no longer an arrow — are being realized in the (traditionally) feminized shape of the body of the matrix.”


“Where women have usually been objects to be looked at, hypermedia systems replace the gaze with the empowered look of the embodied browser in motion in archival space. Always in flux, the shape of time’s transformation is a Mobius strip unfolding time into the dynamic space of the postmodern text, into the ‘unfold.'”

And furthermore,

“As quantum interference, the unfold is a gesture that is a sensory interval. In this in-between space, the transformance of the nomadic browser takes place; she performs the embodied knowledge acquired in her navigation of the world of the text.”

I hope that’s clear to everyone…

…The intention behind such wilfully unintelligible text is, it seems, not to invite thought or reward it, but to repel and discourage it. This is done by exhausting the reader’s efforts to comprehend and reducing him to a state of demoralized dishonesty, whereby absurd and vacuous statements are repeated and endorsed, regardless of incomprehension and for fear of appearing stupid. By publicly endorsing vacuity, and making great claims in its name, the unsuspecting student is thus painted into a corner and any subsequent rethinking entails an intolerable loss of face and credibility. Few of us like to admit to being duped, least of all those who have been duped rather badly. This may explain the heated defensiveness that often surrounds even the most absurd material of this kind.

READ the entire piece…

C O M M E N T S : now closed