Saturday, July 29, 2017

Systems, Contexts, Frames and Patterns

So, let me continue to update you on my activities as president of the New York Society for General Semantics with this post about an event we held on March 29th that featured an interview I conducted with Nora Bateson, along with readings from the book of essays she published last year, Small Arcs of Larger Circles: Framing Through Other Patterns. And let me add that the book is a marvelous collection that is written for a general audience on topics relating to ecology, systems, relationships, psychology, education, and much more.

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Nora joined us in New York City, journeying all the way from Sweden, for our conversation and discussion, and book signing. We were honored to be able to host this very special event, and here is more of the description of that evening's program:

Systems, Contexts, Frames, and Patterns

A Reading and Conversation With Nora Bateson

Nora Bateson brings an ecological and cybernetic approach to the problems we face, individually and globally, in the ways that we understand and interact with our world. Drawing on the famous map and territory metaphor that is central to general semantics, she emphasizes the need to to change our ways of thinking, and perceiving, and engaging with each other, and the environment we share.

Her award-winning documentary, An Ecology of Mind, focuses on the life and thought of her father, Gregory Bateson, a pioneer in systems theory, information theory, and complexity, as it relates to culture, psychology, and biology (his father, William Bateson, coined the term genetics). Carrying on in this tradition, Nora Bateson gives lectures and workshops worldwide, and founded the International Bateson Institute, based in Sweden, which she serves as President.

Joy E. Stocke, in Wild River Review, states that, "Bateson brings her gifts of language and storytelling to fruition in her new book of essays and poems... as she explores her father's and grandfather's work in the context of her life as a writer and researcher, as well as the world each of us navigates as part of a larger whole."

David Lorimer, in Network Review, describes Small Arcs of Larger Circles as, "a rich feast with poetry, short reflections and more extended pieces introducing the terms transcontextuality and symmathesy," and concludes that "this seminal book will give you a new relational lens on life."

It was by all accounts an evening that was thought-provoking, enlightening, and inspiring.

Of course, you don't have to take my word for it, you can decide for yourself:

It was a unique session, and one that many found altogether inspiring!

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