Camille Ayn Makes Her Father Proud

Jameson's picture
Submitted by Jameson on Mon, 2009-08-10 10:10

Forgive me for this indulgence, but I'm as proud as any father could be. My 13-year-old daughter, Camille, is one of fifteen girls who've been handpicked for the special philosophy class at Epsom Girls Grammar School - an honour bestowed upon those who've excelled academically and have an inquiring mind. The teacher began the introductory lesson with the getting-to-know-you question, "Tell me how you all got your names." Camille said most of them were either corny or weird spellings of ordinary names. She was looking forward to her turn. "Camille is from the French sculptor Camille Claudel, and my middle name is Ayn." The teacher stopped in her tracks: "Ayn? Spelt A-y-n? Do you know who that is?" Camille smiled. "Yes, the Russian/American philosopher Ayn Rand," she said proudly, leaving her teacher a little wide-eyed. The first lesson is on Aristotle - a perfect place to start. She has a reputation for challenging the teachers... looking forward to hearing how this one fares. Smiling

Appreciate the post, Curt

Jameson's picture

Welcome aboard, by the way. Smiling


Curt Holmes's picture

I don't want to forgive you for your indulgence, Glenn, but I do want to thank you.

I, too, have a 13-year-old daughter and can imagine the pride you must feel. And, like Olivia, I am struck by your photograph of Camille. I see optimism in concrete form.

The future looks bright!

But Linz!

Robert's picture

He's trying to quit... Smiling


Lindsay Perigo's picture

"He really is my hero, but even he has his faults - like the fact he smokes."

The one thing he has going for him!! Eye

First lesson debrief

Jameson's picture

It wasn't about Aristotle as it turned out - in fact quite the opposite: the teacher's opening gambits were God, Plato and Obama - in that order. Camille was thoroughly annoyed, having brushed up on her Aristotle. But she got a shot in when the teacher asked if anyone knew who Plato was. "He was the pupil of Socrates and the teacher of Aristotle. Plato saw the world subjectively and said we can't really know the true nature of our universe, whereas Aristotle was objective - he said using our five senses we can know everything."

The question of God was cut off at the knees shortly after Camille stated, "God doesn't exist. He can't be proven to exist through science, and to say that he exists without scientific evidence means you can believe anything could exist." Before she could add, "... like Santa," the teacher said religion was a tricky subject and moved on. Camille was happy to note that most in class agreed with her.

After the teacher waffled on about Plato's Myth of the Cave she somehow segued into a statement that went something like - there's no such thing as perfection, and no-one's perfect. She used President Obama as an example: "He really is my hero, but even he has his faults - like the fact he smokes." Camille and her newly-made philosophy friend, Samantha, groaned in unison.

Stay tuned. Next week: Aristotle. Smiling

Thank you one and all...

Jameson's picture

I have passed on your congrats, and I'll let you know how the first proper lesson went once I've been debriefed. Smiling


seddon's picture

Congratulations to you daughter on her selection. My daughter, Ayn Rand Seddon, obvously has faced the same "where did you get your name" question over the years, to say nothing of the "Whose that?" followup query. My dear son, Beethoven (who died on May 12, 2007) -- never faced the same followup question; immediately everyone knew the person he was named after.



Callum McPetrie's picture

Congratulations Camille!

Judging from the usual drudgery that passes for a political or philosophical argument these days, I'd say that she ought to prepare to fight back claims about "greed", "the profit motive", "exploitation" etc (I'd be surprised if any other student could make the link between metaphysics and ethics). Hopefully, she'll have enough knowledge in her arsenal to make short work of the socialists and altruists in her midst!

What a well merited and fabulous opportunity

Sandi's picture

Splendid news for Camille and her dad.

Thanks for sharing and congratulations to the clever & lovely young lady.

Good news Glenn

gregster's picture

There were no such opportunities at Sacred Heart College.


HWH's picture

It's not the sex Linz. In Afrikaans we have a saying related to baldies which when loosely translated goes something like this...

All men have woman that sit on their heads, except some of them don't sit still.

"let that be a warning to you"...ha, look who's talking, you've obviously been doing some batting on the other side of late. I hope for your sake it's not Lady Slapper, or vengeance will be mine! Smiling

I don't know is Camille qualifies Glenn

HWH's picture

But if she does, see if you can help her enter the AS essay comp.

Details to be found here


Kasper's picture

What a fantastic class to be going to. Looks like she earned her placement. Kudos, Camille! I wish we had something similar back when I was at school. I do fear that she will be taught a whole heap of bullshit however. Hope she keeps a very strong ear and de-briefs with her Dad every now and then.

I can't help but be concerned that the assalt on her mind will ignite.

"Ethics are arbitrary social conventions. You only believe what you believe because you grew up in a western culture in prosperous NZ. Other people think differently. All ethical systems are equal and all cultures are equal." "We must tolerate and respect all points of view as equal as it would be arrogant and contencious to suggest otherwise"

"Who is to say that your reasoning and logic is better than anyone else's? Western world views are inspired by Greeks who think linearly and eastern worldviews, so misunderstood by western, think circularly. Who are you to apprehend them from your western perspective?"

"Is reality real? Do you exist? How do you know? What *if we are just all a computer program????"
"you can't be sure of anything" what is truth? Who says? How do you know?

I'd give her lots of ammo if I were you. Stolen concept theory for one.

This is brilliant Glenn.

Mark Hubbard's picture

This is brilliant Glenn. Good on Camille.

I'd love to be a fly on the wall for some of the classes.

Reassuring ...

Lindsay Perigo's picture

... that there's such a class for the bright kids. I assume Camille's bright, but I can't tell. Being the typically contemporary youngster that she is, her speech is entirely unintelligible to me. Of course, given her pedigree, there'd have to be some brains there—although Glenn can't speak either. Oh, and Hilton, Glenn was quite the pretty boy when I first met him. Unfortunately all that heterosexuality made his hair fall out. Let that be a warning to you Eye

Seriously, congrats, Camille Ayn ... and good on you for feeling proud, proud Dad!

Congrats Glenn

HWH's picture

She's obviously inherited the brains but thank Galt the looks didn't get through Smiling



The light in that face!

Olivia's picture

Darling Camille.
Let's hope she manages to break a few rules too! Eye

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.