Then I say, "The main purpose of my talk is to demonstrate to you that no science is being taught in Brazil!"
I can see them stir, thinking, "What? No science? This is absolutely crazy! We have all these classes."
So I tell them that one of the first things to strike me when I came to Brazil was to see elementary school kids in bookstores, buying physics books. There are so many kids learning physics in Brazil, beginning much earlier than kids do in the United States, that it's amazing you don't find many physicists in Brazil — why is that? So many kids are working so hard, and nothing comes of it.
Then I gave the analogy of a Greek scholar who loves the Greek language, who knows that in his own country there aren't many children studying Greek. But he comes to another country, where he is delighted to find everybody studying Greek — even the smaller kids in the elementary schools. He goes to the examination of a student who is coming to get his degree in Greek, and asks him, "What were Socrates' ideas on the relationship between Truth and Beauty?" — and the student can't answer.
Then he asks the student, "What did Socrates say to Plato in the Third Symposium?" the student lights up and goes, "Brrrrrrrrr-up" — he tells you everything, word for word, that Socrates said, in beautiful Greek.
But what Socrates was talking about in the Third Symposium was the relationship between Truth and Beauty!
What this Greek scholar discovers is, the students in another country learn Greek by first learning to pronounce the letters, then the words, and then sentences and paragraphs. They can recite, word for word, what Socrates said, without realizing that those Greek words actually mean
something. To the student they are all artificial sounds. Nobody has ever translated them into words the students can understand.
Principal Skinner, Now as queen you shall be entitled to eat the same french fries as the teachers do.
Lisa Simpson, The ones made from potatoes?
, The very same!
I'm so happy with my evil plan. Say goodbye to music, gym, and art. Soon we will have the perfect school... where fun and excitement never starts.
— Principal Skinner
, The Simpsons
, The President wore Pearls.