- Aug 29, 2017
- New Jersey formerly NYC
- Multi Format
As @MattKing pointed out, academic articles aren't as accessible as some other texts. When it comes to publications in some realms (let's say Math, Physics etc.) people accept this rather easily. When it comes to texts in other fields, I suppose they don't recognize the complexities because at first glance, the text appears to be quite simple. Much of the complexity is hidden - but it's there alright. It becomes apparent if you really try to understand the mechanics of the research, or even try to replicate it. At that point, issues related to definitions, operationalization and methods (which in itself is kind of a universe) become really pressing. People with training in academic research recognize this, because of their training. Lay people don't always recognize this and tend to oversimplify matters. That's not an insult any more than pointing out that for people with no training in legal matters, legislation can be complex and difficult to make sense of. Training makes a difference; it's there for a reason and it's just not realistic to expect to be capable of the same things lacking training as someone who has had this training. With sports, everyone recognizes this, but for some reason, when it comes to academia, apparently it's insulting to some to point out the same simple reality.
No. That means that the Avedons and Leibovitzes in the research could still be there, and most likely there were a bunch of them, but what was not investigated is how their different route to success worked exactly. They are part of the flow in figure 2F that starts bottom left and ends top right. Of this group, they write the following:
In keeping with the scope of the research, the authors reflect on the trajectories of these 'break-through' artists only in terms of how they exhibited their work in the kinds of ways that are central to the definition of career success used here: at venues with great centrality (which happens to correlate to high monetary valuation of sold art). The Avedons and Leibovitzes wouldn't be excluded from the research. Their achievements are just not the focal point, in the same way that the particular career paths and achievements of sculptors, pilots, bakers and postmen who turned photographers weren't central to this research.
This is one of the statemens why my feedback to you has been direct, and lacking sugar coating as @Sirius Glass put it. If your critique of the article is offered in the form of imperatives, which suggest that you know what could and should have been done, then you make yourself vulnerable to counter-criticism that identifies the errors in your assumptions. If you would phrase your thoughts in a different way, you might be met with a different response. Had you for instance started out in this thread by asking "hey, does anybody know why they studied A and excluded B? B seems logical to me, but they only focused on A and I don't really understand why." Things might have developed differently. Instead, you made statements (part false, that's what I initially responded to) about what you personally feel are shortcomings in the study and formulated your views as imperatives towards the authors. Taking that example of the marathon runner again: it would be a bit like me walking up to Kipchoge and starting to explain to him that he should hold his hands a little lower when running because I feel it looks funny the way he's doing it.
The point is that these particular data would not support the kind of analysis that you envision. So go ahead and set up a new project, gather new data and do it your way. It's a totally different research than the one discussed here. They're only tangentially related. You'll find that out when you'd start drafting a set of research questions, figuring out suitable methods and identifying potential data sources. At that point you'll see that each of these are significantly different from what's available in this report. The only area where there's some overlap would be in the theoretical framework.
That's fine, and nothing stops you from raising a kid that way. However:
1: This article doesn't cater to parents in raising kids.
2: Your statement suggests that you're not so much interested in what might come out of such an analysis as you've hinted at, but that you have a predetermined expectation of what should come out. In other words, there's a strong bias. This is (again) not an insult, but just a reflection on human nature - we're all biased. In research, what's important is to realize this and figure out how it could inform a research project, but also how it threatens them, as well as the interpretation of outcomes of existing projects. In this particular case, what appears to happen is that your bias (what you hope that might come out of a project like this) results in a rejection of the relevance of the present research and ex-post suggestions to change its scope in fundamental ways that are not supported by the data used. It's a free world, of course, but that also entails that people will then point it's nonsensical to make such suggestions. Especially if they just keep coming, even after it has been pointed out multiple times and in multiple ways that what you appear to want, is just not part of the package here.
I'm not your supplier. You're not my customer. This is not business. Your statement is out of place and not applicable here.
Yes, nobody doubts this and your example is inspirational (great to hear about the double-career success of your son). What's important to note, though, is that success in terms of making a (good) living is not what the authors in this paper investigated. Their definition of success is made along the lines of reputation, exhibition history and work valuation. The authors themselves explicitly state that this is a limited view of the much broader construct of success:
Taking a broader view on the construct of success would certainly be possible, but it would require different questions, different methods and different data. The same is true for investigating alternative paths to success (even in the narrow conceptualization in this research) that rely on other achievements than art exhibitions.
None of what you say justifies being impolite.