On nescience

From my beloved former tutor Eva Brann:

Advice to myself concerning nescience:
1. Simply admit ignorance of what others do not know (facts, theories). 2. Don’t be boastfully modest about not knowing what no one else knows either. 3. Either resign yourself to never knowing what you ought to know or make a project of learning it, but don’t fuss. 4. Don’t claim that something important is unknowable; it’s pure presumption. 5. Try to exult in newly discovered perplexities. 6. Don’t display dithering nescience; it’s just annoying. 7. Remember that unknowableness is the least persuasive antidote to dogmatism. 8. Make no boastful protestations of your large ignorance of expert’s expertise. 9. Don’t say “I don’t understand” when you mean “I don’t approve.” — Open Secrets, Inward Prospects, p. 366

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