I found myself generally repelled by Andrew Lapin’s column (Of philistine and film connoisseurs, 9/8/09). Lapin talks about the “proud philistine,” or someone willfully ignorant of film, and goes on to say that there’s nothing wrong with being one.
It goes without saying that film is an art form essential to modern culture, and Lapin is arguing that cultural ignorance is A-OK.
Any university’s mission is to spread knowledge, and we should all agree that knowledge is something to be desired. After all, we’re paying enough money in pursuit of it. I respect anybody who knows a lot about cars, molecular biology or film. Though I can’t say I know everything about these subjects, it doesn’t mean I shouldn’t want to know more.
Willful ignorance isn’t something that should be tolerated — not by the Daily and not by us as a university. If someone irrationally refuses to watch Wild Strawberries because it’s in black-and-white or because it’s in Swedish, that’s not a prerogative — that’s just stupid. We should recognize it as such.