top of page

# Student Group

PublicÂ·89 members

# Problems Essay John

The essay includes an example of a man trying to guess the ratio of "blanks" and "prizes" at a lottery. So far the man has watched the lottery draw ten blanks and one prize. Given these data, Bayes showed in detail how to compute the probability that the ratio of blanks to prizes is between 9:1 and 11:1 (the probability is low - about 7.7%). He went on to describe that computation after the man has watched the lottery draw twenty blanks and two prizes, forty blanks and four prizes, and so on. Finally, having drawn 10,000 blanks and 1,000 prizes, the probability reaches about 97%.[1]

## problems essay john

Richard Price discovered Bayes's essay and its now-famous theorem in Bayes's papers after Bayes's death. He believed that Bayes's Theorem helped prove the existence of God ("the Deity") and wrote the following in his introduction to the essay:

Certainly the interviews in the Slave Narrative Collection present problems beyond the general issue of the reliability and accuracy of recollections of the past. Not only had more than seventy years elapsed between Emancipation and the time of the interviews, but most informants had experienced slavery only as children or adolescents. Those interviewed were extremely old and most were living in conditions of abject poverty during the Depression years of the 1930s. These factors often combined to make them look upon the past through rose-colored glasses; they fondly described events and situations that had not been, in reality, so positive as they recalled them. Moreover, it is apparent that some informants, mistaking the interviewer for a government representative who might somehow assist them in their economic plight, replied to questions with flattery and calculated exaggeration in an effort to curry the interviewer's favor. Exaggeration may often have been the consequence of the interview itself, which gave informants an opportunity to be the center of attention.

It is axiomatic that the quality of an interview depends on the skill of the individual who obtains it. The quality of typewritten accounts contained in the Collection is grossly uneven, reflecting the varied talents of the Federal Writers. Most of the interviewers were amateurs, inexperienced and unsophisticated in the use of interview techniques. Most expressed little concern about the problems of distortion inherent in the interview process and were insensitive to the nuances of interview procedure. A questionnaire devised by Lomax suggesting possible categories of discussion was often partially or totally ignored, frequently resulting in rambling and trivial comments. When the questionnaire was too closely followed, the result was stylized and superficial responses, devoid of spontaneity. Moreover, it is problematic how accurately interviewers wrote down exactly what the informant had said, especially when, as in many narratives, there was great attention given to dialect. In addition, as Rawick's searches of state Writers' Project records indicate, some of the writers and editors themselves undertook to revise, alter, or censor the accounts.27

Given the myriad problems of authenticity and reliability surrounding the interviews, one might despair of using them at all. Indeed, until the 1970s they were not widely used in a serious fashion by scholars. The reservations concerning their use were summarized by David Henige, who, after a cursory discussion of the context within which the interviews were obtained, concludes that "the combination of weaknesses that characterizes the ex-slave narratives restricts their reliable data to such matters as childhood under slavery, some aspects of family life, some details on slave genealogies, and some unintended insights into the nature of memory and of interview psychology...." Therefore, he contends, the Federal Writers' Project effort to preserve the life histories of the former slaves "was largely an opportunity lost."30

On July 17, 2020 the world lost a social justice warrior who left us all a final gift in the form of an essay entitled, "Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation." The following Learning Resources are designed to help teachers, students and engaged citizens unpack these valuable life lessons as a way to honor the legacy of Rep. John Lewis. This may be one of the most important documents you read this year and in the coming years. We hope you will revisit it often.

John Lewis, the civil rights leader and congressman who died on July 17, 2020, wrote this essay shortly before his death. He requested the letter be published on the day of his funeral as a final message to the American people. It was released on July 30, 2020. Listen to an audio recording of the essay first, embedded in the text of the essay, or listen and view it as presented in this video.

In his essay, Lewis states in his final days on earth, he was inspired by the student and community activism he witnessed across the country. Take a few minutes to read the first two paragraphs, or listen again to the audio of this opening statement.

In paragraphs three and four of his essay, Rep. John Lewis describes the impact the death of Emmet Till had on him as a young man. Read these paragraphs, then take a few minutes to explore this tag on Bunk.

Use the connections on Bunk and the Black Lives Matter website to compare and contrast the deaths of Emmet Till to the most recent deaths of several African Americans mentioned in the essay or on the Black Lives Matter website. Use the Venn diagram provided by your teacher to note your observations. If working in a face to face learning environment such as a classroom, your teacher may provide you with a paper copy, or if working remotely, you may make a copy, then rename it and complete the diagram digitally.

In the last chapters of his book, Du Bois concentrates on how racial prejudice impacts individuals. He mourns the loss of his baby son, but he wonders if his son is not better off dead than growing up in a world dominated by the color-line. Du Bois relates the story of Alexander Crummel, who struggled against prejudice in his attempts to become an Episcopal priest. In "Of the Coming of John," Du Bois presents the story of a young black man who attains an education. John's new knowledge, however, places him at odds with a southern community, and he is destroyed by racism. Finally, Du Bois concludes his book with an essay on African American spirituals. These songs have developed from their African origins into powerful expressions of the sorrow, pain, and exile that characterize the African American experience. For Du Bois, these songs exist "not simply as the sole American music, but as the most beautiful expression of human experience born this side the seas."

Ridley's essay validates a claim that I have made before many audiences, namely, the problem with the word nigger is not simply that blacks routinely use it but rather that many African Americans believe that niggers really exist. The question, "How do we stop Americans from treating us as niggers?" is replaced by "How do I keep from becoming a nigger?" Here I put words into Ridley's mouth, "The best thing black people can do for niggers is not to become one."

If you are convinced that some people within your community are indeed niggers, then questions arise, the first being, how do you know one when you see one? Recently, I facilitated a workshop in Virginia where almost all the participants were African Americans with advanced university degrees. We were discussing a shirt that I brought from the Jim Crow Museum that had young black men depicted in stereotypical ways: pants sagging, carrying music boxes, looking threatening -- and one fellow urinating on the street. When I asked the workshop participants to tell me what they saw, several said, "Niggers." For the next hour we discussed what that word meant to them. I can summarize their beliefs this way: niggers are real; they can be men or women, but the scary ones are usually young men -- the women mostly hurt themselves with unwanted pregnancies; most niggers are poor, lazy, and ignorant; niggers are no-good, trifling victims who constantly complain; Washington, D.C. is full of them; and, finally, none of the participants in the room were niggers (though one person quipped with unintentional irony that I had obvious sympathies). Their depictions of so-called niggers sound like the portrayal that was offered by Ridley (2006) in the first paragraph of his essay: