Published papers and a profile can be seen at these repositories:
Academia.edu - http://independent.academia.edu/ThorMay
Linkedin.com - http://au.linkedin.com/in/thormay
Mendeley.com - http://www.mendeley.com/profiles/thorold-may/
Google Scholar http://scholar.google.com.au/citations?user=CwWx1-kAAAAJ
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Passionate Skeptic stands for: I don't care what you believe in, so long
as you don't believe in it too strongly. A belief is a weapon in the armory
of your heart, and its razor edge will murder the innocent. The ice, the fire
of your passion will seduce mundane men and women. Your clarity will excite
respect. And the first demagogue who comes along with a key to your heart's
armory will wrest the weapon from your moral grasp. The first cause which
wears the colours of your belief will enlist you as a soldier in ravaging crusades.
Peace friend. Keep your passion to doubt with. Our civilization is a simple
matter of live and let live, of giving dreams a go, but stepping back with a
wry smile when we get it wrong. Let the fundamentalists perish in their own
pillars of fire. Spare a dollar for the living, and have a nice day, Doubt
well, do what you can, then let it be. Presidents, priests, wage slaves,
hustlers, men and women, kids, we all live by the grace of those we love to
despise... Leidenschaft ist, was
Something has changed substantially, beyond the old narratives. That something is the Internet, with uncontrolled actors disseminating information, while elites scramble desperately to recover control of the spin. Such information is often incomplete, biased, or misinterpreted, but it is also not the official story (no matter how many shills governments and companies pay as online agents provocateurs). This new swirling mass of stories has its own dynamic with complex interacting currents beyond anyone's simple control.
Context: The essay considers economics as a psychological phenomenon with the characteristics of a complex dynamic system. It is an initial and somewhat playful exploration, not a mathematical paper on systems theory. The original context was a discussion group background paper which evolved away from its origins. The starting proposal adopted (for argument’s sake) was that “the most economically successful societies have always depended upon a high level of government collusion with commerce and industry, if not control. This argument is a way of saying that the “invisible hand” of the market is not enough to maintain an efficient market, at least beyond village level. There has to be an independent umpire, or forced control (dictator, mafia … )”. It became clear that the government-industry collusion issue was really a surface gloss on a much more complicated reality.
1. Thor's BRIEF IDEAS (Wordpress blog) OR the full list of short cuts on this site, thormay.net ....
274. Come the Revolution
You talk too much about what you've seen and what you think. While the mafia are still in charge of the asylum they will find a law to bury you alive (McMillan-Scott, Edward MEP (n.d.) "Liu Xiaobo: biography". Charter 08 for reform and democracy in China website, hosted by the European Parliament, online @ http://www.charter08.eu/5.html or Escobar, Pepe (August 2, 2013) "Our man in Moscow". Asia Times, online @ http://www.atimes.com/atimes/World/WOR-01-020813.html ).
Come the revolution they will kill you first. You are knowledgeable, tolerant, polite, politically aware. You are a reasonable alternative. Reasonable alternatives are a mortal threat to revolutions (Barnard, Anne - November 30, 2013 - "Syrian opposition frays as disillusion and exhaustion take hold". Brisbane Times, online @ http://www.smh.com.au/world/syrian-opposition-frays-as-disillusion-and-exhaustion-take-hold-20131129-2yh36.html#ixzz2mAl8XnQt ) .
272. God, defined
God : definition: A form of socially shared delusion implying a sentient, omniscient, omnipotent, non-human force which is nevertheless concerned with human actions. Often used subconsciously by individuals to avoid ego responsibility for certain thoughts and actions. Used socially by power seekers as a proxy to validate and enforce control over the thoughts and behaviours of others. Often a convenient metaphor or figure of speech to indicate a totality or unseen force, and used as such even by those uncommitted to any religion. As a sociological phenomenon the complex God symbol has much in common with other symbols of absolutist ideology (e.g. in modern times, Communism, Capitalism .. etc). Ideological symbolism, including the God delusion, is often defended violently since it becomes entwined closely with feelings of personal identity and group identity, as well as reflecting much shared cultural behaviour. In many jurisdictions God/Ideological symbolism is constructed into formal provisions of community law and used to divide good (those who comply with the entailed beliefs and behaviours) from bad (those who do no comply with the entailed beliefs and behaviours). In all national and cultural jurisdictions large numbers of pragmatic individuals have always remained silent in private rejection of widely accepted God/Ideological belief and institutional frameworks since for social and professional reasons a public challenge would usually yield little personal advantage, but ensure significant personal disadvantages.
more short cuts (brief ideas)
What would be the
consequences, to follow a crazy thought experiment, if the
At the top of the assessment pyramid are multinational testing corporations, best known by the names of their standardized tests, such as IELTS, TOEIC, TOEFL, BULATS, TKT, Cambridge ESOL main suite, or G-TELP (there are many other aspirants). In some ways these testing companies can be thought of as the Big Pharma corporations (i.e. drug companies) of the educational world. Like Big Pharma they are subject to constant challenges to their ethics and reliability from within and without, and like Big Pharma they are rather prone to corrupt the issues which they were designed to assist with. The possible corruption of language learning by the requirements of testing is known as wash-back. Wash-back is not always malignant. The analysis in this paper is a tentative attempt to manipulate the wash-back from an international test in a manner which actually assists genuine language acquisition.
Abstract: The argument I will develop in this essay is that the foreign students are a latent human resource who can assist with overcoming English monolingualism in the Australian population. Foreign students, properly rewarded, can be a major source of skills transfer. Every one of those students is a walking compendium of language and cultural skills that Australians need to know
(also on this site here)
4. Unwise Ideas (most content still remains here at http://thormay.net. All writings will take quite a while to transfer)
This (non-academic) article covers a lot of territory,
nothing less than the “cultural operating systems” within which we live, how
they have changed, and how they might be changed. There is a kind of
arrogance in toying with the elements of ‘big picture’ issues like this.
Nevertheless everyone has submerged opinions or prejudices or assumptions on
how it all works. By dragging his own subconscious dregs into the light of
day, this writer neither hopes nor expects to change the world. Rather, this
is an open invitation for any reader to reflect and match their ideas against
those of others.
Abstract: (This e-book is roughly 20,000 words)
In spite of waddling locals with voices like swamp
frogs and the tattooed pub denizens,
This is a small collection of short biographical videos, a teaching demonstration, and some recitations of my own verse, together with several well-known verse ballads (for the benefit of learners of English). The blog duplicates material already on thormay.net at http://thormay.net/video/videondx.html
Language Tangle - Predicting and facilitating outcomes in language education [PhD dissertation]
Doctoral dissertation in
knowledge worker productivity (specifically, language teacher productivity),
This thesis argues that foreign and second language
teaching productivity can only reach its proper potential when it is accorded
priority, second only to language learner productivity, amongst the many
competing productivities which are always asserted by stakeholders in
Abstract: These are notes on English stress, rhythm and intonation. Part A is for students and Part B is for teachers. The treatment here is “technical”, as by a linguist, but in very plain language. Even with poor formal English, L2 speakers who “sound right” will gain social acceptance, and this in turn will greatly accelerate their learning. Firstly the concept of “the music of a language” is introduced. It is noted that languages are on a scale of “syllable timed” to “stress timed” (though this is not a simple matter). English is a stress-timed language. Both word stress and sentence stress are essential in English. However, proper word liaison and elision marks native speakers from non-native speakers. Some advice is given on how to practice privately and in a classroom. The importance of teacher talk as a model is noted.
Other articles on language teaching here
China Readings etc.
Archived news and articles
a) General Readings on China from 2007 to October 2011;
Thor's Big Links List
to ESL Resources & Jobs
Bus to Heaven (a story for learning English)
Every morning Helen put her left shoe on before her
right shoe. She combed her hair before she put on any mascara. And she made
her bed before she ironed her dress. There wasn't any special reason for
doing things in that order. It was just a habit, and she never thought about
Mr Dog Looks for Breakfast (a children's story for learning English)
Mr. Dog woke up one Spring morning and yawned. He stretched his legs and wrinkled his nose. Then he sniffed the breeze. There were many interesting smells in the air. He could smell the jaoze steaming in Mrs. Li's kitchen. That made his to tongue hang out, and he panted a little with pleasure. Presently he caught another scent. It was that damned Tabby cat. He frowned, and growled deep in his throat. The silly thing was watching him for sure, hiding behind a fence or something. He looked around suspiciously, but Tabby was not to be seen...
Long ago (1967) in a freshman
literature class, in response to one of my jabs the tutor asked sarcastically if I thought I was an educated person.
For her that meant quoting a canon of classic English literature. Even then I
thought that like the rest of us, she was an 'uneducated person'. I was damn
sure she wouldn't have a clue how to start her car with a wet distributor. I
remain irredeemably uneducated in vast areas of human interest ...
Stumpy and the Decision Tree [ a daggy epic of the unexpected growing day by day]
I've gotta' admit, the gunner blinked, it's neat -
That tear-down screen, the instant con of command ...
Meg grabbed his ear and he flinched.
You tinfoil hoon, she hissed, you wouldn't know
A sacred sign from the flash of an arcade strip.
Now hit back a signal wrapped in respect
Before we get zapped to a crisp...
Ambushed again, faked, photoshopped
False friend or true? We met once
Surfing past, a finger click away
Or so you say, and poised now
For assassination, a cold delete?
To be or not to be, the moving cursor asks;
Am I to let your promiscuous affection
Claim my avatar, encode a ghost
A faithless mist of electrons, my pixelated ID,
Dangle in the dragnet of your 541st delusion?
So, Master of the 541st, did you fear our journey
Across the misty mountains of old times?
How is the dust on your feet? Remember
The salty sweat in our eyes, and the song our lips
When the world was made of earth and sky?
three short, and very amateur videos were made in
see the video, "The Journey of a Passionate Skeptic " (4 minutes) here
see the video, "Born 1945 - Still Running Strong" (2.5 minutes) here
see the video, "Teaching English is Fun " (4.5 minutes) here
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