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[Xmca-l] Re: Sociocritical Literacies and more context



Hi Larry,

I suppose what I'm proposing is looking at the negative space rather than the positive space. In the manner of what is present and what is lacking (is the glass half full or half empty?)

I do not mean at all to propose replicating oppression with another form of it and by new or different perpetrators. 

What I mean is that noticing what _allows_ (affords) oppression can help reveal dynamics. 

I'm not proposing anything specific, but merely employing my interactions with my esteemed xmca discussants as a way to think differently about the problem (which is usually considered in solitude), as an exercise of exploration. I do not have an agenda per se, at least not one that is far flung from what others here possess! :)

Sharing dreams is a difficult endeavor I believe, however noble a quest that might be. It is difficult to agree upon the same dream sometimes. It is a valid approach to be sure. I'm proposing (I think) a more material alternative. 

Let's consider something as simple as this: The US was founded upon the claim: "All men are created equal." The disruption there is to say, "Hold on a minute! That's not true!" because what is claimed and what is lived is discordant.

The first note is "Yeah, but there's this institution called 'slavery', what about that?" If this is allowed to stand, shouldn't it be disrupted?

The second note is "Yeah, but what about the women?" If this is allowed to stand, shouldn't it be disrupted?

The third note is "Yeah, but what about disabled/vulnerable folks?" If this is allowed to stand, shouldn't it be disrupted?

The fourth note is "Yeah, girlfriend, but what about LBGT?" If this is allowed to stand, shouldn't it be disrupted?

And I'm sure there are other notes to hear, such as "Yeah, but what if I'm not American?" Now how that is to be disrupted, I am not sure. It does appear to be the topic at hand lately, wouldn't you say, and in many different manifestations

(The cynics might counter, "Actually, all men are born into classes," but let's put those claims aside since anyone hasn't made that explicit claim in founding the US, even if "separate but equal" during Jim Crow can be interpreted that way. Still, it is worth consideration that there are implications everywhere in the US that people do think this way. The problem is, in that case, is it descriptive or prescriptive?)

I believe in all the above cases disruption was an act of care and concern, wouldn't you say? It seems fair to say historically that disruption is the first step to liberation, by first asking the obvious questions.

An act of care can be the most disruptive force there is. :)

In order to really understand what is discordant however, is to say: How is it possible to live two realities? Where what one says is completely different from what one does? It would mean understanding how that Pedagogy of Oppressors transforms a person to live two realities would be quite valuable, wouldn't it?

This is where I find Orwell to be invaluable. What is interesting in that light is not what happened to Winston, but what happened to O'Brien? How does one continue to live on as an oppressor? Doesn't it get tiring? Does one ever sleep well at night?

But curiously, Orwell doesn't really focus on that. He focuses on the oppression of Winston. At the time this was published it's possible to interpret the demise of Winston as "And this could be you!" This is the moral of the story, perhaps.  Yet actually, what is more terrifying is to think about O'Brien and consider, "And THIS could be you!"

So I'm only looking  at this from a different perspective... same story, different vantage point. 

What do you think?

Kind regards,

Annalisa