So here goes my last blog post of the year :)/:( I can’t decide if I’m happy or sad to have this first year almost done with. I’ve definitely enjoyed arts one and even though complaining is fun, I’ve actually really enjoyed most of the books and discussions we’ve had throughout the year.
I think ending on Heart of Darkness, Things fall apart and apocalypse now was a great idea because it has messages and topics that are so far from the other books we’ve read all year.
I thought apocalypse now was a really good movie and it was easy to see the similarities to Heart of Darkness. One specific sentence that stuck with me (mostly because part of my essay was on it) was “out there with those savages it must be a temptation to be a god”. It really reiterates the natural incessant hunger for power and how we’re willing to take advantage of any situation in order to feed our hunger.It reminded me of Kurtz who ventures into Africa thinking of himself as a saviour and instead becoming a tyrant to the savages. When humans are given the possibility for supreme power our natural inclinations push us to abuse these privileges.
Another clear idea in the film that can relate back to Heart of Darkness is absurdity. You see bombs exploding and people dying in one corner and the general’s standing with his shirt off, not a scratch, complaining about unsatisfying surfing conditions. He even sends men out into an exploding, dangerous ocean to surf and when questioned, he replies yelling those are my orders! It just shows how absurd the entire scenario is.
This was a pretty dark film, but I think the darkest films are the one’s with the most intense and important messages.
Well, unless I decide to continue this blog in the future, these are my last few words. Thanks to everyone for an amazing first year and hope to keep reading these blogs even if I’m not posting.
The ideas that most stuck out for me this week were
1) The relationship between slaves and masters
2) Why there’s inequality
3)Inequal, but different
1)I may have heard this before, but I found it to be really thought-provoking idea. You would typically think of the slaves as earning the spot of powerless and weak, with the master being a strong, dominating figure. Yet, neither of the two holds absolute power over the relationship. They’re co-dependant and neither can exist without the other. Also when Jill talked about how the master gets his identity from the slave. She/He learns what he/she should or should not be from the slave. It would seem though that the slave who has knowledge of the co-dependancy has more power since, knowing that the master needs them, they would be able to manipulate situations in order to get what they want. This makes me think of the movie the Experiment (based off of a true story) where there’s the pretend jail mates and pretend guards. The guards are only able to hold power when the jail mates give them the ability to control them and you can see how fragile the role of the guard is when the jail mates refuse to obey and instead attack them. It shows also that there has to be fear in the relationship for it to work.
2) I just did my essay and Adam and Eve where I talked about something similar to this. De Beauvoir believes that women are not naturally inferior while men are not naturally born to dominate. She believes that we are labelled certain ways and thus act in those ways, but going back to Hacking you can see that there’s a cycle which happens. People being labelled certain ways, acting in those ways and then being labelled again.You can’t say that women and men only follow their given labels because you don’t know what came first, the label or the way humans naturally are. I believe that in order to have been given these labels, men and women must have had some sort of natural inequality to create these labels. There has to be a reason for these labels to have formed.
3) Jill talked for a bit about how it is said that men and women are equal, but just in different way, yet this is still inequality. This is something that I’ve thought about for a long time especially after religion awareness day that was happening in the SUB a couple of months ago. I was speaking to an Islamic woman and she was telling me about the wrong ideas that people get on there religion, specifically concerning female inferiority. She told me that even though men went to work, women were allowed to do whatever they wanted with their free time and that men were obligated to supply them with whatever they wanted/needed. Men were forced to work, while women were given the freedom to do whatever they pleased. She also told me that their religion’s prophet’s last words were “be good to women”. It was a while ago so I don’t remember everything she told me, but there was a lot and throughout her entire “rant?” I kept thinking how can this be equality? Yes, both genders are being forced to do something or inhibited from doing something, but why does that make it equality. Equality should be both genders being allowed the possibility to do everything the other gender can. Being equal, but in different ways just means being equally oppressed.
As always, I found the lecture to be more interesting than the book as it reinforces all of the main ideas some of which I don’t always understand right away. Also, during lectures there’s always statements that capture my attention and get me thinking. This week one of them was the fact that when you put labor into something it becomes yours. Ever since Rousseau I’ve been thinking a lot of about property and how it came to be and a lot about why we accept others taking property as there own. Like I understand that when you live in a country, like what Christina mentioned, you’re giving consent to the rules that apply to that country, but at the same time who gave consent for our country to even become that country with it’s rules. The Earth is supposed to belong to everyone so why doesn’t every single person get a share of the money that comes from selling land or why are we forced to abide by the law when we haven’t agreed to giving our land away in the first place. Who cares if someone discovers it? That doesn’t give them automatic rights to that piece of earth. And even if I create something, like the example Christina made, the materials I used still belong to the earth so the object I’ve created doesn’t necessarily belong to me just because I’ve put in the labor to make it. I might be less willing to give it up, but it’s still not really mine.
Ok those were the two main issues I had
Ok so after reading History of Sexuality I thought this was just another dry read, but as usual after lecture and hearing the points laid out again in simple terms I actually found it to be pretty interesting.
A few small things in lecture sparked my thoughts, but the one I thought about most was mentioned near the end of the lecture when it was mentioned how much science goes into understanding sexuality, but yet hardly any research actually goes into the improvement of it. This wasn’t talked about for very long, but it stuck in my mind. I never really realized this, but when I think back to grade 9 sex class and all the other lessons in elementary and even regular science classes, we were only really taught about things like how sperm travels and how reproduction works and never on what it feels like, how to improve your sex life (which is completely understandable in elementary school and grade 9), but you would think that these things would be eventually taught. However, those topics are seen as inappropriate to discuss and even with friends and family, topics beside how everything works feel uncomfortable and inappropriate to discuss. The only way it seems to get this information is through magazines and the internet or by experience.
Another was when we were asked what is “sexuality” and the room was silent. There’s certain words you somehow think you know, but when asked directly to define them you realize you don’t completely understand what they mean and it was interesting to discuss what sexuality meant to people and I learned that my definition of sexuality wasn’t completely developed.
That’s all for now, looking forward to hearing more about this in seminars!
Okay so part of me found this to be really interesting, especially with the various ideas like transference and displacement and all the other techniques your body uses to mask your trauma or protect you, but at the same time I found a lot of the conjectures to be too far out to be able to agree with them. Like relating Dora playing with her purse with a desire to masturbate or stating that Dora should not have been disgusted by the embrace from Herr, but rather sexually excited. Who wouldn’t be disgusted at the advances of an old man? It just seems very unfair to be making such outlandish conclusions and forcing them on Dora.
Especially with the dreams, Freud says that dreams are just wishes that your conscious mind represses. He says that the contents of the dream are changed around therefore making it necessary to interpret every part of the dream. With this definition, you can literally invent anything you want to in order to relate it to any of your earlier conjectures which makes it easy for Freud to just say that each of the aspects in her dream relate to her sexual anxiety.And it’s not so much the fact that he’s making these crazy assumptions, but that he can claim them to be true whether Dora agrees or not since he can just explain her denials as repression. She really has no power in the situation.
Yay last blog post!
I thought these plays were a good way to end off the semester since they were both easy and enjoyable reads.I did really enjoy Rousseau and actually had fun writing the essay even though it clearly wasn’t my best, but it was nice to have a simple, non philosophical read for a little break.
The tragedy of Henri Christophe is just another story of how too much power leads us away from our true beliefs. Although his original intentions were to free his people from the tyranny of the French, once given power he becomes that which he was trying to liberate his people from in the first place. Although one may have good intentions, power is blinding.
Reading these plays did make me understand Christophe’s life a little better and make me think that Christophe wasn’t so much of a ..meanie? which is what I originally thought while reading Kingdom of this world. I think he just made the mistake that most people with power make, which is to abuse it and in the end he suffers the same fate that people like Kreon, Macbeth and even Lois Griffin from family guy (season 5, episode 17) suffer: downfall. Most of these people wanted something good to come out of their power, but lost track of what they were truly fighting for.
I really enjoyed silencing the past, I had thought about these things before, but after reading I thought a lot about how much of history we could never know just because there’s too much or an event doesn’t seen interesting enough. I also though about how events like the holocaust get so popularized and we remember them as the most important events, yet there are genocides in which more people have died and we don’t focus on these things and they’re forgotten or never known to some. I also thought about stories like Genesis. If this exact story were to have happened or even Kant’s version, imagine how much the facts of the story could have changed to create the modern version of the story.
Ok so I still don’t fully understand Leviathan, but so far this is the most interesting of the philosophical books we’ve read so far, in my opinion. Although, there are a couple ideas that I don’t full agree with (probably because I don’t fully understand :s) but one was at the beginning (P.18 I think, I’m so bad at finding things after I’ve read them) when he talks about how words can make a person wise or foolish. I disagree with this, I think words can make a person APPEAR wise or foolish, but they aren’t need to decipher between a foolish and wise person. Whether you express yourself (through words) or not, you can still react to things in different ways that can be considered weird, abnormal or foolish. You are still a foolish person, but it’s your words that give others the evidence to label you as foolish. To be wise is to be experienced and you’re able to experience things without speech, and oppositely if you’re inexperienced you might be considered foolish, which again has nothing to do with speech.
Words can share other people’s knowledge and experiences which can potentially make you more wise (Not definitely since you’re pretty much a blind person following another blind person as Hobbes said), but it is still the experience that is making you wise not the words and through reading there’s no way to transfer a lack of experience or foolishness.
One other thing was his statement that there is “no reasoning without speech” (P.20) Again, I’m not sure if I even understand this, but the way that I read this made me disagree because reasoning isn’t just through words, it’s also through memory and vision. You don’t need to recount aloud your memory to reason something and you don’t need to voice what you’re seeing either. For example if you saw a weird looking fruit that your friend just ate and got sick it doesn’t take words to reason that you shouldn’t eat this fruit. It’s out of the memory of your friend becoming sick and seeing that fruit and associating the two. You’re making connections in your brain that don’t require you to write your findings on a piece of paper or even think in words what happened.
That is all
At the end of Dr. Faustus I didn’t feel sorry for him.
He had so many chances and warnings ,but he never listened.
Dr Faustus reminds me of Kreon in the way that he’s so focused on acquiring power that he shrugs off all of the signs towards a downfall. In the end he faces the same fate as Kreon in losing all of his power. Yet, Kreon you feel sorry for because he was honestly fighting for something he thought was beneficial, but Faustus fights completely out of greed.
I found it interesting at the beginning the way he decides on the dark arts. He goes through other disciplines that he could possibly go for and when he gets to religion he dismisses it using only justifications that put it in a negative light, he quotes only a section of religion that makes it seem negative while neglecting the positive side.
You can tell from the beginning he’s just not very smart……………
Sorry this blog post is mostly about me disagreeing with things.. 🙂
First of all, I admit I looked at a few blog posts before starting mine and I noticed a few people talking about female empowerment in Antigone. I disagree with this, because although Antigone did refuse to conform to Kreon’s laws, the bigger point in this play is Kreon and his superiority over everyone, including Antigone. She does completely step out of the female role to defend her brother and his rights, but she’s still exiled for disobeying which shows that man still has the higher role.
The other statement I disagreed with was the one mentioned in our lecture today that Antigone and Kreon were in the same boat, neither of them right or wrong. In my opinion, Antigone is the protagonist in this play. Like Kreon, she’s fighting for what she thinks is right. She thinks that Polyneices deserves to buried and treated with the same holiness that Eteokles is treated with, while Kreon thinks that Polyneices’ treachery makes him unfit to be buried. It’s a simple difference of opinions and each of them is valid. The only aspect that sets them apart is that Antigone is opposing the law out of pure respect for her brother, while Kreon fights out of stubbornness. He doesn’t want Antigone, a woman and a minority, to appear smarter than him, the ruler.He repeats over and over in the play that he doesn’t want to give and be beaten..he’s treating it more as a game than anything.
I did air cadets for a few years (embarrassing) and at least half of our squadron was made up of Kreons (insecure kids who tried to enforce ridiculous regulations while they could, because outside of their titles they had no power and they were derps)
And that’s about all I can think of for now