Sunday, October 26, 2014

Not Being College and Career Ready: A Way of (re)Learning

Sisyphus (M.A. Reilly, 2012)

What I most need to know is that journeys cross divides.


The young man is of an age where the shift from paper to networks as a means to gather, organize, analyze, and communicate information was more known than not; less truth than surprise. He has seen how hierarchy must give way to adaptation, rigidity to flexibility. The need for such accounting has passed.

Poised between, many of us still carry what it means to be human in the age of paper.  We have not lost this sense of self and it (in)forms our priorities, necessities, and policies.  This way of knowing allows us to utter small, untruths about the importance of being ready.


Some days I hear my son when he tells me (by what he values) that we need not be bound to the paper mythologies that have given us definition.  There are newer ways to (re)learn.

Newer ways, I think. And so I repeat, like a weak mantra, like a mother unsure:
The individual is overrated, romanticized. 
Readiness is a fixture of modernity. 
Prescription is not a synonym for description.
I repeat all of this as he tells me going to college is not a road walking. What I need to remember is that he is not lighting out for the territory, ahead of the rest. The need to be first is a need best forgotten.


What I most need to know is that when we enter into cleared, unstriated spaces the desire to reterritorialize is strong. Seductive. Present.  This is the way it has always been. Our need to code and recode is formidable.

"A discarded necklace is a map of love. A dagger is a map of betrayal" (Masny & Cole, 2012).

The need to map is powerful.


What I most need to know is that people journeying are (re)naming, making new maps, becoming fixed and unfixed.  Living.
Becoming is infinitely more interesting than being.
Being ready is an untruth my son has been told by his teachers, his father, me.
Being ready is mostly about a suspension of breath.  An educational apnea.

There is no being ready.  There is now.

Even as we loosen ourselves from that which binds us, our ideas and actions can still be colored by historical (mis)understandings.
There is no readiness for a boy's future. 
Maps have no beginning and no end.  

My maps have been fraught with false stops, the legacy of paper, the legacy of readiness.

"What maps will our children make?" is the better question to pose.


Masny, Diana; Cole, David R. (2012-06-14). Mapping Multiple Literacies: An Introduction to Deleuzian Literacy Studies. Continnuum-3PL. Kindle Edition.


  1. Parenting, even teaching, certainly loving, in this age where quantum multiplicity makes a mess of all maps just throws us into the canvas while asking, demanding, us to be artists and not alone but daring to stretch the dimensionalities, like your postings. Thanks, again, Joseph/DocHorseTales

    1. Like your reply. Such energy to it. Posted part of it on twitter.



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