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On the Average

Episode 1 of 5

Novelist Ian Sansom takes a sideways look at the history and meaning of the ordinary and the everyday and discovers how the word 'average' has become a byword for mediocrity.

Novelist and critic Ian Sansom believes that the idea of the average is one of the key terms and principles of the modern age, encompassing human productivity, relationships, politics and art. So, how did average become a byword for mediocrity?

'Average Is Over' proclaims the title of one recent best-selling book about economics. 'Start: Punch Fear In the Face, Escape Average And Do Work That Matters' suggests the title of another. 'Conquering Average'. 'Mastering Average'. 'Overcoming Average'. This has become the mantra of our times.

In the opening essay of this series of investigations into the average, Sansom takes a sideways look at the history and meaning of the ordinary and the everyday and discovers what it means to be the opposite of 'awesome'.

Producer: Stan Ferguson.

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15 minutes

Last on

Mon 28 Sep 2015 22:45

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