Incomprehensible Witch

Over at Taki’s place, Ted Dalrymple takes aim (metaphorically speaking;  he’s a Brit) at some total loony university professor:

Professor MacCormack’s book defeated me, not only sapping my will to read further but inducing a state almost of catatonia.  It certainly cured me, at least temporarily, of my obsessional desire to finish any book that I have started.  Her style made  The Critique of Pure Reason  seem as light and witty as  The Importance of Being Earnest.  She appears to think that the English plural of manifesto is manifesti rather than manifestos;  I admit that it conjured up in my mind a new Italian dish, gnocchi manifesti.
Open the book at any page and you will find passages that startle by their polysyllabic meaninglessness combined with the utmost crudity.  By chance, I opened the book to page 144 and my eye fell on the following:

The multiplicity of becoming-cunt as an assemblage reassembles the tensors upon which it expresses force and by which force is expressed upon its various planes and dimensions.

And Dalrymple notes:

I have known deteriorated schizophrenic patients to speak more sensibly and coherently than this.

No kidding.  Let’s take a look at this paragon of literacy, shall we?

…and not in drag:  

This Oz bint is, and I quote:  “a professor of continental philosophy at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge, England” (whatever “continental philosophy” may be).  Also, Anglia Ruskin University is not part of Cambridge University, but a separate school with campuses scattered across several towns, Cambridge being but one of them.

One wonders what John Ruskin (after whom it’s named) would think of this example of its academic excellence.

 

24 comments

  1. Someone should tell Morticia that the hallmark of an intelligent professor is not using big words. It is taking complex subjects and explaining them so that the average person can understand them.

    1. Morticia Addams was a woman of good taste, family virtue, and excellent breeding! You do her a profound disservice by comparing this tatted-up, multiply pierced, harridan to her.

      Cruella de Ville would be more appropriate.

  2. Back when I was in High School the class was given the task of finding three quotes from Confucius. My family just happened to have an old (late 1800’s IIRC) edition of Encyclopedia Britannica which had several, I actually had the easiest time in finishing the assignment of all my classmates. One quote has stuck in my head ever since: “In style, all that is required is to convey the meaning”.

    With that bit of ancient wisdom in mind, I have NO idea what meaning she’s attempting to convey, and I’m forced to conclude that she doesn’t either. Just because you barf alphabet soup onto a surface doesn’t make you a writer.

    1. Sadly, this sort of off-kilter intellectual washout and financial parasite has been a fixture/hazard of Universities since at least the Middle Ages (my Roman and Ancient Greek history is weak). At the moment they are slightly more prominent than usual, since the would-be Ruling Class has been going progressively batty for about a century, but while one likes to think of University Professors as serious scholars, this is also a dual type.

      1. I have to say, I spent nearly 20 years working for a university and meeting all kinds of professors. I wouldn’t call any of them scholars, let alone ‘serious’, Preening self-important twits with enormous, extremely fragile egos, yes. Scholars, no.

        I literally met hundreds of professors. not one of them could be considered even slightly competent or knowledgable at anything even slightly outside their extremely narrow and focused area of expertise, yet every single one of them thought their expertise in one thing meant they were qualified to dictate policy on ALL subjects.

        1. I’ve probably told this story before, but here goes:

          When I was in college I worked part-time in the computer center. This was when the IBM PC first came out, the ones equipped with the 5.25″ floppy drives. Well this one particular professor called for help, and one of my friends/co-workers was dispatched to assist. The prof in question held BS, MS and PhD from Harvard. While following the directions that came with his new PC, he read “remove the diskette”, at which time he flipped open the drive, extracted the floppy disk, peeled the vinyl cover open and pulled out the media disk. Never stopping to think that, since the cover was actually SEALED, perhaps tearing it open wasn’t the best idea. And this was a man with advanced degrees in Computer Science from an Ivy League university, working WITH a new computer (so theoretically within the bounds of his expertise).

  3. With all of the castles in England, you would think that the prof could find easier employment somewhere as a resident gargoyle. From what little I can understand of her thanks to Taki she seems to want the human race to die off. If harpies like her were the only chance of human survival, I’ll go for extinction any day.

  4. Good G_d in Heaven! I read Dalrymple’s article and if it’s available on Amazon I would encourage Mr. Dalrymple to leave a two word review: “Incomprehensible dreck.” I think I’d have to take peyote and psilocybin mushrooms soaked in LSD to get a momentary tiny glimmer of understanding of that absolutely insane prose. If someone could get the University’s address perhaps we could do a mass mailing of copies of Strunk & White’s Elements of Style to the professor.

    1. If I was going to take peyote, psilocybin and/or LSD I’d have MUCH better things to do that try to sort out if there was any meaning behind the output of whatever computer software wrote that.

      1. Good point, B’Livion. I’d probably find more sense in the secret patterns of the nap of my carpet and texture of paint on the walls than in her unreadable crap

  5. I’ve see pictures of that creature on the internet before. If a professor looked like that, I’d get up and leave the room midlecture and change classes.

    I think continental philosophy refers to studying philosophers of Europe as opposed to Eastern philosophers and such.

    That sentance is utter drivel. There were two professors that wrote a paper of drivel and got it published in an academic journal. I think it had to do with sociology or something. They purposely wrote a paper that neither of them could understand and submitted it to a few of the academic journals to see if they could get it published and they succeeded. They admitted the paper was utter rubbish.

    This link isn’t about the article I recall but it will do. It was published in that bastion of leftwing nonsense The Atlantic

    https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2018/10/new-sokal-hoax/572212/

    JQ

    1. The dumbest aphorism in the English language is “You can’t judge a book by its cover.” Even without reading her work, just seeing her. Oh I’m judging.

  6. Not that I would risk losing my sense of hearing to find out but does she talk that way ?
    If she does, I would follow JQ out of the room at about the third ‘sentence’.
    If she doesn’t talk that way, it is all purely for show and to try and convince her
    listeners ( sufferers ? ) how intelligent she is.
    I once heard a manager up my ‘chain of command’ use ‘decisioned’ and ‘decisioning’ instead of decided and deciding and am certain it was done for the same reasons !

  7. What odds will anyone give me on whether she has tenure yet?

    According to Professor Reynolds, the book he quoted is in its third printing. Either there are now three copies of the book, one of which Dr. Dalrymple was forced to buy in order to review it, or she has assigned it to three of her classes, to the everlasting damage to those students. Certainly the book won’t ever be found in any best seller list.

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