...socio-economic reality, profound as it is, is not all of reality. At the risk of appearing impertinent, I mean to extend this limitation of the reality claims to the whole range of humanistic studies - sociologism, anthopologism, and psychologism - which tend to become closures of our thought of reality: for example, the utilitarian claim, along with its historical development in socialism, that reality, physical and cultural, is entirely determined by the social; or, for example, going the other way around, the apparent psychological defence of the individual, which defines the real by way of a self that becomes ahistorical, like the traditional soul, but otherless - and "therapeutically triumphant." This version of humanism collapses into itself, wordless, leaves the large number of people who define it moiling... The disaster and danger of such total claims to reality, in which the complex discourses of a world and their relation to one another disappear in the hegemony of one of them, spread far and wide in modernity... [T]yranny - we have come to know it well in this century - results from an improper use of the discourse of social reality, unmeasured by other discourses of the real, in which wholeness is claimed, or, rather, imposed, and social reality is consequently dehumanized... [What we need is] a vocabulary to correct the hegemony of the social... -- Robin Blaser
Cicero says: In what concerns my association with men and things, I refuse to be coerced even by truth, even by beauty. -- Hannah Arendt, Between Past and Future
Linh Dinh, in the NY Times blog:
Once, I washed windows after appearing at a community college as a guest poet. It would have been a hoot had one of the admiring students saw me vigorously wiping water before it could freeze on the window pane. “Yo, isn’t that the poet who came to our class yesterday?!”
There are pluses to being close to those who could help you.Confronted by a torrent of bad news from our capsized economy, many people anticipate at least the kind of unrest that has already broken out in many countries, but we are so docile, really. Some people I know speak of heading for the hills and stocking up on canned food, potable water, guns and slugs — the bunker mentality. But instead of fleeing one another, like we’ve already done for half a century or so, shouldn’t we figure out how to be closer in every sense?
Pictured: Mother Europe Cares for Her Colonies by László Moholy-Nagy