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Global Strategic Implications of the Unsaid

From myth-making towards a wisdom society (Part #1)


The Varieties of the "unsaid" in sustaining psycho-social community (and References) are presented separately as an Annex


Introduction
Examples of the "unsaid"
Encompassing the "unsaid"
Incommunicability
Negative capability
Global strategic implications

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Introduction

The increasingly globalized communication society is paradoxically characterized by an increasing number of topics on which little or nothing may be publicly said. Whilst many of these "zones of the unsaid" have existed in the past, their existence becomes all the more felt in an information-rich environment. They might be compared with the astronomical "black holes" which populate the galaxies.

The concern here is at what point an increase in the number of "zones of the unsaid" may completely undermine conventional hopes for global policy-making, world governance, and the implementation of strategic initiatives in response to global crises.

This concern builds on the experience of the author in profiling some 59,000 world problems (in the Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential, 1995) -- as perceived by the network of 63,000 international organizations (identified in the Yearbook of International Organizations, 2003). Many of these problems have also been considered unmentionable in the past -- and may continue to remain so. Note that those considered unmentionable by one constituency may not be so for another.

The following text comprises three sections. The first offers some examples of the "unsaid". The second discusses possible opportunities for navigating a strategic-space with a relatively high density of the "unsaid" -- and the circumvention of its dysfunctional effects in a knowledge-based society. This is seen as the basis for transforming a society grounded on myth-making through the media into a "wisdom society". The annex provides clues to further reflection in the light of extensive web resources on the variety of forms of the "unsaid". The contextual challenge for a "knowledge society" has been articulated in an earlier paper (Coherent Policy-making Beyond the Information Barrier, 1999) based on an earlier exploration of Development beyond Science to Wisdom: Facilitating the emergence of configurative understanding in Councils of the Wise (1979).

litating the emergence of configurative understanding in Councils of the Wise (1979).


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