Disclaimer: English Kinda Thing

The sole purpose of the "English Kinda Thing" is to document my attempts to correct my own mistakes in standard English usage and to share the resources I find. In no way do I attempt to teach nobody English through these blurbs--just as I intend not to teach nobody to be a neurotic and psychotic handicap in Ratology Reloaded or Down with Meds! :-)

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Sternberg, Robert J. (2007). Who Are the Bright Children? The Cultural Context of Being and Acting Intelligent

The cultural impact on the definition of intelligence is described in this paper.

Sternberg, Robert J. (2007). Who Are the Bright Children? The Cultural Context of Being and Acting Intelligent. Educational Researcher, 36(3), 148-155. 

How is culture defined here (how it is used)? (Berry, Poortinga, Segall, & Dasen, 1992)

  • Descriptively to characterize a culture
  • historically to describe the tradition of a group
  • normatively to express rules and norms of a group
  • psychologically to emphasize how a group learns and solve problems
  • structurally to emphasize the organizational elements of a culture
  • genetically to describe cultural origins
"Could the psychotic population be considered as belong to a culture?" That's the question.

The theory of successful intelligence 
Definition of Successful intelligence: "What is needed for success in life, according to one's own definition of success, within one's sociocultural context."

What is success to me? To be functional (sorry about the seemingly lack of ambition... though it's in reality really ambitious).

The knowledge and skills are acquired through analytical, creative, and practical abilities:
  • capitalizing on strength
  • correcting or compensating for weakness
  • adapting to, shaping, or selecting environments
I surely know a thing or two in the compensation department.

Different cultures have different conceptions of intelligence...

What does it mean to perform intelligently?
  1. Brazilian street children who could not perform school math could satisfactorily do the same math in the context of selling on the street.
  2. Children in the villages used their tacit knowledge of these medicines an average of once a week in medicating themselves and others.  More than 95% of the children suffered from parasitic illness... how to use any of the natural herbal medicines to combat the diverse and abundant parasitic illnesses they might acquire in rural Kenya. "To these children in rural Kenya, however, the intelligence needed for survival and success in life, in general, may not be the same as intelligence needed for success in school, and the former may be more important to them than the later."
  3. Yup'ik Eskimo children in southwestern Alaska... possessed knowledge about hunting, fishing, gathering, herbal treatments of illness...  They could take a dogsled from their village to another village in the dead of winter and find their way.  [People without the knowledge] would fail to discern the landmarks and quickly would get lost.
"In every culture, people have to recognize when they have problems, define what the problems are, solve the problems, and then evaluate how well they have solved them.  But the content of the problems to be solved is different, and what is considered a good solution differs as well."

Psychotic intelligence?  Does it exist?  For yours paranoid delusional with grandiosity, the word "intelligence" itself is one to run away from for the sake of my life.  Yet, given how psychosis is stigmatized, I would like to use Sternberg's notion as a means to speak to my psychotic fellows... whether it sounds presumptuous or not.

There surely are a lot of them out there who have done great things albeit their psychosis.  There are also people like me... striving for my own success... with success defined as surviving functionally.  So we stumble along in our own version of psychosis, and strive to keep our heads above the sea of symptoms.  How we learn to live since our onset is the development of psychotic intelligence in process, and what we learn to do to keep ourselves functional... starting from taking care of ourselves... is the psychotic intelligence in practice. Unless you make an attempt to explicate it, most of the times, they are tacit and practical knowledge we have.

Sure, our psychotic intelligence could only go so far as to keep ourselves in one piece and be functional.  It will not lead us to big money, big career, etc.  Yet, it's the foundation... because, don't know about you, when I was in the psychiatric ward, I was definitely incapable of performing tasks and doing jobs.  In real life, I have also lost a whole lot of promises... starting from a job.  So, have no doubt in the fact that, if you are still functional, what your suffering granted you is more than minor inconveniences in life... it's intelligence in an unconventional perspective... something obtained incrementally while always have room to improve and more to gain.

It doesn't mean that we should be sitting home being all grandiose about how psychotically intelligent we are... oops... no.  Rather, our psychotic intelligence is a means to survive ourselves... thereafter... grounded in our psychotic intelligence, we can try to compensate our weakness and to survive in the presumably ordinary world and do the ordinary chores.

You are intelligent... with that intelligence practical and incremental.

(Done with what I intend to say... reverting back to running away from the notion of intelligence, success, etc)

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