Inspiration from the inspiration for the Rats of NIMH

I had a recent internet rabbit hole experience stemming from different strains of thought, and I’m not sure the entire backstory matters, but I will say my eldest child is currently reading The Rats of NIMH. And, I came across a quote by the scientist whose work is credited with the inspiration for this children’s novel:

“Our success in being human has so far derived from our honoring deviance more than tradition. Template changing always has gained a slight, though often tenuous, lead over template obeying. Now we must search diligently for those creative deviants from which, alone, will come the conceptualization of an evolutionary designing process. This can assure us an open-ended future toward whose realization we can participate.”
– John B Calhoun

Further prodding about lead me to this article that integrates the lines of thinking from that time period to more current lines, which I thought an interesting bookmark to add to all the other references here in relation to the Anthropocene: Space Cadets and Rat Utopias—The Appendix

This website stopped publishing in 2015, but it seems to have articles related to some of the discussions on Infinite Conversations. “The Appendix was a quarterly journal of experimental and narrative history, soliciting articles from historians, writers, and artists committed to good storytelling, with an eye for the strange and a suspicion of both jargon and traditional narratives.”


This was really interesting. As a social researcher with a focus on Elderhood. It took me on a great exploration of the part we can play in being template changers as explore our contribution in our later years. Thank you Kaya