This Academic Life
  politics fractal

politics fractal
Originally uploaded by 21stCWeber.

Thanks to the magic of, and CMap tools, here's a graphical version of the dichotomy I was referring to in an earlier post concerning "orientations towards politics." This graphic makes the argument much easier to understand, I think, than the Punnett-square-esque table I had used previously.

Note that this diagram is also a static representation of an ongoing series of local debates and discussions; in theory, the same basic dichotomy (and calling this a binary dichotomy is of course an idealization; the whole diagram is ideal-typical) replicates again and again within each of the terminal nodes of the present diagram. What is fascinating to me (and to Andrew Abbott, whose analysis this is derived from) is how the same central controversy replicates over and over, and that's what I am trying to capture in this picture. One basic controversy, one commonplace on which we have all implicitly agreed to disagree; a myriad of positions to adopt with respect to it.

Of course, there are other fractals useful for making sense out of these debates too. more on those when I get this &#!*^%$ grading done and can blog about them, complete with better graphics…

[Posted with ecto]

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"Academia als Beruf," or, an occasional record of the various aspects of my life as an academic. Written by "21stCWeber," an arrogant handle I know…but I must confess that I do want to be Weber when and if I grow up :-)



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