Tag Archives: classification

Who’s an “Indian”?: classification and implications


Classification carries implications.

(by Eileen Dombrowski, from OSC TOK blog) Who’s indigenous? And does it matter? These are significant questions, with significant answers. They are relevant to TOK both through the new area of knowledge, indigenous knowledge, and an old area of knowledge, ethics – as well as to all the ways of knowing involved in classifying our concepts, and, in the knowledge framework, to the topic of concepts/language. Two stories in this past month’s news bring these questions to life: a court contest in Canada about who is classified as “aboriginal” and a conflict in Tanzania over whether indigenous people have any claim to their traditional land. Continue reading

TOK and classification: the jerk

classifying(by Eileen Dombrowski, from OSC TOK blog, July 19) After my last post on classification (July 7, “Nazi poster child was Jewish”), I thought you deserved a lighter one. (After all, for many of us, it’s summer holiday!) I’m picking out the same central topic – classification of people – but this time with a laugh:  Continue reading

Bolivia reverses congress clock: symbolic representation and (disputed) meaning

(by Eileen Dombrowski, from OSC TOK blog, July 12, 2014) I love plenty of knowledge questions – but sometimes I delight even more in the answers, especially when they jolt me for a refreshing moment into someone else’s way of seeing the world. Did you see that Bolivia has reversed the direction in which the hands on the clock on its congress building in La Paz will move?   Continue reading

TOK and Classification: Nazi poster child was Jewish

classifying(by Eileen Dombrowski OSC TOK Blog July 7) Here’s a great story for TOK: “Nazi perfect Aryan poster child was Jewish.” We certainly don’t need additional evidence to debunk racist and nationalist classifications of humanity, but the bitter ironies of this particular story do make it hit home. Continue reading

TOK and mathematics: how not to be wrong?

1407math(by Theo Dombrowski, OSC TOK blog July 2, 2014) “As it develops, mathematics moves both towards the abstractions of the mind, and also towards the connection with the world.”  Thus begins the section on “Pure and Applied Mathematics” in the ToK Course Companion.  (p. 357).  The nature of the relationship between the abstract nature of mathematics and “the world” is one of several issues examined in a new book on mathematics Continue reading