To share or not to share, that is the question

Andrew Sutton’s blog postings referring to the lack of conductor participation in conferenceshttp://www.conductive-world.info/2009/05/break-out-of-ce-goldfish-bowl.htmland reluctance to write, evaluate, and ask questions about CE has prompted some strong reactions.

http://www.conductive-world.info/2009/05/cmon-everybody.html

The point that financial considerations can limit participation at conferences is a valid one and probably goes a long way to explaining the lack of conductors at conferences.

http://konduktorin.blogspot.com/2009/05/when-it-comes-to-crunch.html

For example, for a conductor working in the UK to attend the World Congress next December in Hong Kong he/she would need to outlay 1500 pound sterling at least. And do it in advance, to book a place and a plane seat.

As to recording and sharing knowledge, it was suggested that information should not be shared as it encourages others to start their own practice when they are not qualified to do so. Surely other professions, such as doctors, dentists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, do this without such fears or predicted results? Most people realise that you can’t learn how to do something like this from just reading a book, paper or seeing a film, realise that more in-depth knowledge is needed and this is provided by training. Otherwise there would be no need for training in anything- we could all learn by reading.

I think it is important to build a literature, to record practice either in paper form, on the Internet or on film. Collecting such material is what librarians do , bringing it together to make it easily accessible for those who want to learn more. If everyone refused to tell their ‘secrets’ the world would be a poorer and less knowledgeable place. As Tunde says, that is what helps to build respect for CE from other professions, and encourage researchers to investigate. I have asked hundreds of times over the years for conductors to write about their profession with little result. In fact, my last blog was on this topic. It took eighteen years to build the collection held in the National Library. This includes material at all levels, some well written, presenting CE ‘properly‘, and some not doing so well, but still helping to build a comparative literature, a basis for further study.

I heard an item on the radio last week about the statistics of domestic violence. Apparently some figures were being quoted by respected sources about this which had been obtained from an inaccurate report. No-one had queried their accuracy, even though the figures were unexpectedly high, before going on to refer to it. It made me think of Conductive Education and how this happens in a similar way.Because the people who know what it is, how it works etc don’t write it down and provide basic accurate information for those who wish to know more and understand it, so others use papers and books containing inaccurate facts in their research and thus compound the initial mistake.

So come on conductors, give it a go and help your profession move forward to a better acceptance and higher regard. Sharing can only help CE, not hinder.

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