Er, make that History & Anthropology

This is an update of this post, reposted here for the benefit of those of you not reading this in an RSS feed.

For those of you playing along with the home game, this Summer I’m taking two classes:

Technology & Civilization History of California since 1900 , and Emerging Global Cultures.

They’re both undergraduate classes in other departments and don’t count toward my degree, but who cares – I’m here to get an actual education.

The Technology class is alright, so far. Lots of work on CD-ROMs and online with very little in-class time. It’s not ideal, but I’ve been writing about what makes a technology socially disruptive (forget about “Your Failed Business Model Is Not My Problem” — that’s all about economic disruption) and starting to get into little bits about technology transfer between cultures – it ain’t all wine and cheese. More like this: papermaking artisans taken captive by the Turks during war with China in the 10th century and taken back to Baghdad. As I’ve often said about religion: Technology didn’t spread by knocking on doors.***

The Anthroplogy class starts Monday, only lasts three weeks, and jams a bunch of content in there. Then again, the last three-week-long Summer class I took taught me everything I know about story structure. That’s a good sign.

***[UPDATE: I dropped this class. I might write more on why after the paperwork clears, but when I said “It’s not ideal” I was being kind. Instead, I’m adding a History class taught by a professor with a great reputation. I’ve realized there’s absolutely no sense in spending more time to learn less from unenthusiastic instructors. I only have room in my schedule for a few classes that don’t count towards my degree. I’m not taking classes in other departments to fulfill any requirements, so I surely don’t want to be taught by someone just fulfilling their requirement to teach a certain number of credits, and that’s the vibe I was getting in the Technology class. The Anthropology class is fantastic – I’ll write more about that as it progresses.]