April 17, 2009
Academic Freedom also includes the ability to think clearly without coercion, fear, or intimidation.
March 26, 2009
March 25, 2009
March 4, 2009
Change- It’s what we talk about!
I feel like we are all (cats vs. mice) running into traps and constantly ensnaring our victims.
I don’t know if human beings have the capacity or the fortitude to break the hegemonic ideologies that ensnare us. There seems to be something that stops us as a collective: or group: or village, from the massive destabilizing ideologies that remain stagnant and oppressive to our habitual human actions. A main critique of post-Marxism points this conditional stagnancy as a product of the Ideological State Apparatuses (ISA). I will declare that I am not a POST-MARXIST! I suggest we build new and intelligible institutions run by the un-intelligible people- within certain structural constraints: I DO lament that there may be no other way or there will be shit in a handbag.
The practicing ideologies have at their disposal an array of powers that can remove us from the struggle, and I do not mean just violence, but also our ethic of reality. And in a way this is a good thing. I’m always impressed with the nature of ideology as it shapes the convictions of the human being- i.e. what is moral, right, ethical, what to love, etc. Ideology is not an individual or subjective experience.-It does not stand alone but it is unique, and it is shared among us all as Freud’s Ego/Jungian collective un-consciousness & Marx’s False Consciousness; all within a framework of structural determinants and collectivised discipline of our shadow selves.
However, in a partial way our experiences are subjectively different and: we, you & I- are true-but only partially, and as related only in something like (I guess) our emotions and how we feel towards one another. Practicing ideologies are contexts of all our collective cultures-we are all part of the objectified other and this relates in both our unique performances, and our unique mimicry of cultural archetypes. This is defiantly shown throughout our history; however, that depends on how you negotiate it as well: comprehensively or sloppily.
We are constantly conditioned in a socially elaborate construction; and yes, Althusser was right language via Institutional State Apparatuses (ISA) tend to form our actions significantly. These significant burdens have played a significant role in this construction- However, there are something like 2000 plus languages in the world to differentiate us.
In our micro- mesa-macro social -worlds there is a subsequent discourse which is probably both: 1]easily mutilated by our agency, and 2] stuck in a stagnant formation that represents the weed or foundation of our collective unconsciousness. I’m not getting into notions of reproduction-though I agree that we need to look at the ISA
I think we must pay attention to the ontological referents of Hall specifically the ideas of materialism. Hall writes, ‘ideology has sometimes been obscured by theorists who claim that ideologies are not “ideas” to all but practices, and it is this which guarantees that the theory of ideology is materialist’ (Hall, 1985:100)I find most impressive is that Hall bases his understanding that the principal use of all material social phenomena is directly related to language. I think we must look here as well- but very carefully as well.
February 27, 2009
February 27, 2009
When you accept the basic tenets of what Joseph Campbell is trying to explain- and only if you do this, you may find Joseph Campbell to be one of the few -but many- literary geniuses of our time. A genius because he discusses the order and structure of what a metaphor is as applied to cultural centered mythological discourse- that is our reasons for doing things?
Questions: How are ‘we’- as a society able to shape the discourses and texts to match the cultural ideals that we want?
In a way it could be argued sociologically that his thesis explains away religion- however, it may also mean that in a way the textual symbolism and (words) of Joseph Campbell are nothing more than a construction of a mythology itself. It can be argued that what he is producing is a psychological construction explaining are basic psychological natures of human cultures. What are we to make of the empirical evidence that he has offered in relation to his claims and the mystery behind the facts that he makes. This mystery being, and the genius of Joseph Campbell thought: is that many ancient cultures of seemingly distant- and “geographically” disconnected regions are able to have shockingly similar ends as well, and even more shockingly, that these cultures portray similar mythological type rituals.
Honestly, a great joy to read, he will expand and shake your consciousness. His proposal has the potential for mythopoetic interpretations but in a way most fields of academic thought are contained in myth and symbol as the basics of exchanged language. In other words Campbell may explain the foundations of the human centered academic fields, e.g. sociology, as a way of understanding human nature and agency in terms of cultural follies, and structural implications as well.
February 24, 2009
This is not a suggestion to go buy the book!
A cycle occurs everyonce and awhile in all social strcutures. This cycle for example may be witnessed in the economic cycle.
Amy writes ‘The relationship between the cultural system and sociocultural interaction is THE DECISIVE factor influencing whether or not the relationship between will favour morphogenesis (elaboration) or morphostasis (maintenance).’
I agree, and I would like to argue a couple aspects of archer’s thesis that may elucidate significantly one of the many broad aspects of analysis needed to comprehend structural and cultural emergent properties as a cohesive and overly-stable social condition of reality and harbringers of chaos. In other word morphostatic systems fail….inevitably! Yet the choice of the agent is constant.
I too feel that change is in the air…always! However, I question THE WORLD’S ability to maintain its cultural sanity ‘with rapid and incessant change’. I feel a ‘deep and continuous reflexivity’ is, not just possible, but a needed for cultural survival. (Sorry Amy I know I took you slightly out of context, as usual).
Is this a CEP? you betcha! Let’s use an example,
In any environment a SEP could be inserted that would shape the CEP. However, we know that CEP is required to shape the SEP. In this casechanging structure is the process of changing culture, and we know that an insertion of a new SEP would be at the expense of a great deal of collateral damage- just look at any country that went communist over the last hundred years.
Morphogenetics is based on a natural system of emergent properties (CEP+SEP) that are the basis of both deterministic values and exotic extraneous vectors + the unknown.
That makes sense,I think. If: we assume (A)
A1) These changes are simply necessary components of the evolving complexity of human relations (a positive assumption), or they are reflections of deeper more complex underlying entities or shadows, socio-psychological factors THAT DENY us something structurally connected- to say something akin to Marx’s species being. (A positive and negative assumption)
A2)Or is it our own curse for being the way we are, greedy, murderous-gluttons, who pillage third world countries and get off on fast-food. Any means to valued ends of survival (Wholly negative)
A3) Or is there a way to maintain the consistency of CEP, yet endeavour to move beyond it to something much more efficient to our ever-growing and ever-challenged ideologies of contemporaries times. Perhaps as a basis of SEP this can be had, and good times for all- I hope, or in till something better comes along
Structure gave me life, now ‘does it’ show me how to live?
If we accept that CEP’s are relatively autonomous or epiphenomenal then we accept the effects of structure on our agency. We can also assume our agency can effect structure, but we may declare this as rare. The question comes is there a ‘tipping point’, ‘singularity’, a ‘critical mass’ where the structural determinants (SEP’s) can’t hold the CEP,and agency overwhelms structure? If we come to look at SEP as products of our indoctrination and habitualization, then we become knowledgeable and responsible for our agency CEP towards changing the social structure SEP, for which we perform inyour
February 15, 2009
As the quest to understand the social is categorized down to structure, agency and time our powers to choose, or at least debate about choice, are significant.