Re: PROACTIVE: It's a Word

Subject: Re: PROACTIVE: It's a Word
From: "Michael A. Lewis" <lewism -at- BRANDLE -dot- COM -dot- AU>
Date: Fri, 17 Oct 1997 13:23:08 +1000

Simon North wrote:
> > They are PROACTIVE rather than reactive learners."
> I concede the citation, but he could have far correctly written:
> "They are active rather than passive readers."

No: and here, I think, is the point. Reacting is not the same as being
passive. Active is recognised as the opposite of passive, and someone
(Knowles, apparently) wanted an opposite of reactive. One of the ways in
which language changes is that new needs arise -- sometimes because of
new technologies; sometimes because of new disciplines or fields of
inquiry; sometimes -- as here -- because of new ways of looking at old

BTW, I hate the word "proactive" too, but I do think it fills a need.
Michael Lewis
Brandle Pty Limited
PO Box 1249
Strawberry Hills, NSW 2012

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