Jared Diamond's Theory Of Knowledge

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Jared Diamond’s article on the flora and fauna illustrates the belief that true knowledge is apparent when a person has the ability to widen their educational experience by applying what he or she has learned. This idea parallels with William Perry’s theory which mentions that a knowledgeable man needs to be able “to understand ‘how other fellow orders knowledge’” since “’facts,’… without a frame of reference, are not even ‘true’ at all” (Perry 549). Woven in Diamond’s This-Fellow Frog Name Belong-Him Dawko, he learns lessons that support the ideology that knowledge is created through hands on experience. There are several lessons Diamond learns. The primary lesson Diamond learns validates Perry’s ideology towards gaining knowledge; the core …show more content…
Ignorantly relying on what he has learned from his education, he choose not to trust, initially, the Fore’s knowledge. He was convinced that his research was the universal truth, and to his surprise he was incorrect. Trying to express his ideas from textbooks, Diamond “patiently explained to [his] companions that [he] had read about some mushrooms being poisonous” and that he has heard of “even American mushroom collectors dying because of difficulty of distinguishing safe from dangerous mushrooms” (Diamond 17). Diamonds perception is limited. In context, he accepts his education as true while not trusting “how his fellows order their knowledge”. The Fore has gained their knowledge though experience, not literature, thus providing a different frame of reference. The Fore then explained “about twenty-nine typed of edible mushrooms, of which 15 grew on trees and fourteen grew on the ground” and consequently the one they ate was “delicious and perfectly safe” (Diamond 17). The Fore not only discredited what Diamond assumed was a universal truth, but outwitted American experts due to their ability to decipher which mushrooms are edible because of their experience. This encounter is a testament to Perry’s belief on what constitutes a truly educated person. Lacking knowledge, he refused to accept his “fellow’s orders knowledge” by not …show more content…
Diamond discovers that the Fore’s alternative frame of reference was more advantageous; instead of challenging them, he now seeks to learn more. The reason why he is not challenging them and is now looking for new knowledge is because he achieved a grasp of ‘how other fellow orders knowledge’”. His acceptance is shown when he admits that “this point of view, my knowledge of New Guinea’s 725 bird species is a disadvantage” (18). He is aware that his memorization of bird species and what they look like is not a proper frame of reference to be deemed as educated in that field. He understands that he “knows every species that has ever occurred on the whole island of New Guinea, but when [he] visit[s] a site in New Guinea, [he doesn’t] know exactly which species occur at a particular site” (Diamond 19). Perry insists that the diverse frame of reference is the key to being considered educated. The relationship between Perry’s theory of education and Diamonds experience in New Guinea is essential because Diamond’s expedition serves as avid proof towards Perry’s belief. Since the Fore learned from a different frame of reference which is by practical experience in opposition to a textbook, their “minds weren’t cluttered with useless information” and they were “comparing it against the 120 to 180 species they know to be present” (19). Now that Diamond

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