Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Two Models of Wrongness

Haley Scholars Fall 2013 Reading Groups  

"To err is to wander, and wandering is the way we discover the world" (42). --K. Schulz

In chapter 2 of Being Wrong, Kathryn Schulz discusses pessimistic and optimistic models of error. She explains that the optimistic model is often "harder to recognize around us, since it is forever being crowded out by the nosier notion that error is dangerous, demoralizing, and shameful" (27). 

Schulz makes several claims about the vital interplay of optimistic and pessimistic models of error. Of the ideas she raises in the chapter, what did you find most fascinating and why?

10 comments:

Ke'Asha jones said...

The Idea that I found interesting was when she spoke about taking on error in a positive perspective. She was saying how if we took it on in a positive perspective instead of a negative perspective we would be able to explore "the unreal state of our consciousness". I found that interesting because if we did see error as something to grow or learn from instead of something we should be ashamed of we would be able to delve deep into our own personalities and really find ourselves and grow within ourselves in my opinion.

Jessica Oranika said...

The chapter began by talking about the way people felt about their mistakes and errors. I found it very interesting they way she connects the feelings of humiliation and mortification with wanting to die and disappear forever even though the feeling of embarrassment is only temporary .

monique williams said...

I can personally relate to this because I often would label myself pessimistic when it comes to my actions. I often get upset when situations do not go as planned, instead of looking at it from a positive perspective. But I believe society focuses heavily on perfection, and when people fail we make a big deal out of it. Just look in the media, we rarely hear of people congratulating one another on doing things right. Instead we break people down when we make mistakes. But I do believe that out of every bad situation comes something good. Sometimes it is just hard to find that positive light.

Conradette King said...

I thought the idea of thinking positively about an error in life. It seems like common sense to not dwell on mistakes but actually reading that taking a positive approach to error can help our conscious and unconscious mind.

Sandra Nnoung said...

The quote at the beginning of chapter two really caught my attention. I found it interesting how William James talks about error. The author seemed to agree with him. People expect to make mistakes and they still feel bad about it. If errors are bound to happen, why not just go with it and look for the bright side of things. Mistakes should be a lesson so they are repeated. People, however, tend to wallow in shame and mortification when something goes wrong. I took this to mean that mistakes are usually not permanent so we should be optimistic that any embarrassment and shame will only be fleeting.

Brenda W said...

What I found most fascinating was her views on how we fear error. It is as if we are brought up and taught to believe that error is always a bad thing. Although there are several cliches about learning from your mistakes, the overall notion is still to simply not make mistakes from the start. I can definitely relate to this on a personal level because when I make mistakes or do something wrong, it takes me a long time to see the optimistic side. I spend weeks or even months beating myself up, then I realize that so much can be learned and appreciated from error. I love how she sees and explains the optimistic side of error.

Tia S. said...

It was interesting to just think about the idea of the pessimistic model and how negative it really was.
Our overall view is that error is humiliating and so embarrassing that we want to disappear. Sometimes it so bad we feel like we want to die.
However, as she said in the chapter, not all errors have bad outcomes. I definitely have had plenty of "happy accidents". Her explanation of the optimistic side was interesting too. We don't have to feel ashamed by our mistakes and can learn a lot from them.

Ajeenah Johnson-Brown said...

The idea Schultz discussed that I found interesting was how we mentally punish ourselves for our mistakes. She used one man's example, Ross Gelbspan, in particular. Ross was so embarrassed about the article he wrote providing false information of Donella Meadows being pregnant. Afterwards, Ross said he was mortified and even as far to say he hopes he's dead by the book's publication date. Donella Meadows the woman he wrote about was not even upset about the whole thing. We all do things like this. At least I know I do. We beat ourselves up for mistakes we make even when the person effected is not worried or concerned. This chapter really hit home for me. We need to learn from our mistakes instead of allowing them to consume our minds and lives.

Jennifer Johnson said...

I found what Schulz says about being wrong not being limited to to humiliation and defeat interesting. Usually those are the only feelings we think about when it comes "being wrong". But we rarely dwell on the fact that other feelings may sometimes come into play

Yasmyn Knight said...

One thing that I found very interesting is that she took an optimistic-take on a very pessimistic states. Instead of feeling down and upset, one should just learn from our mistakes or mishaps. Therefore, we would never repeat our mistakes and live a more gratifying life.