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[Xmca-l] Re: What is a Pedagogy of the Oppressors?



Message from Francine:

Annalisa, Gregg, et al

There is an ideology of individualism that predates Marx that is found in
the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. It is not based on
the individual capitalist exploiting natural and human resources, on the
contrary is based on inspiration from the natural world and social responsibility
to others. I consider myself a latter day Transcendentalist.

And there is also an ideology of the individual in the writings of Marcus Aurelius
based on stoicism, drawing inspiration from nature, and moral duty to others.

Both Emerson, Thoreau, and Aurelius valued self-reliance - that one should strive
to consciously direct one's thoughts, behavior, and emotions in healthy and moral
ways. They all felt moral responsibility for the welfare of others. The interesting thing
about stoicism is that one learns it primarily by example while the inspiring quotes 
help solidify the concept. 

> From: annalisa@unm.edu
> To: xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu
> Date: Tue, 6 Jan 2015 22:38:26 +0000
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: What is a Pedagogy of the Oppressors?
> 
> Hi Greg, 
> 
> Thanks for your fine explanation.
> 
> I appreciate that you are sensitive to interpretation and that others read Marx differently, that there is no one way to read Marx. What I question is the notion that we have "lost" our connection to others. I believe that there is an appearance of "loss" and this expresses itself as alienation in modern society as long as we (each of us) adhere to a notion that we (each of us) are the master's of our individual destinies. 
> 
> As we I think we all know, in reality we are not only not master's of our destinies, but that death is inevitable; we are mere mortals. Yet, it appears an elitism has been created to support this ideology of individualism that is not sustainable for many different reasons and from many different angles. This elite class is its own collective, apparently with its own groupthink.
> 
> I'm still not clear about the ideology of individualism though, what you describe is how the fetishism of the commodity creates alienation. So there is something implied but forgive me if I feel you didn't actually explain what it is. 
> 
> I'm trying to say something new, although I don't want to say I'm the first to say it. I'm proposing that alienation comes from a kind of censored language void of emotion and feeling, not only the environment and not only economically. Isn't it the case that the genesis for this alienation would come from the outside first before inside. Capitalism isn't a bad thing if it were to account for all the costs of making things, like pollution to clean air, taxes for safe roads and running water and sewage systems, as well as the cost for maintaining an intact ecology, and that's in terms of the material. It would also not be so bad if this system would recognize the needs of humans to sleep, to have good health, to be a part of community, to have a good education, to feel safe, and all the other trappings that are described as "socialism" as if needing these things were a slander against the collective elites.
> 
> So the problem is not capitalism but alienation. Is it possible to have capitalism without alienation? Some would say not. I wonder about that. Because I wonder about it doesn't make me an adherent of the ideology of individualism, I hope. I agree that the distancing from laborers makes it easy to forget someone made the objects we use as tools. But isn't that also because no one tells us where these items come from? We have labels for our food, why not have labels on our products? Isn't that sort of happening with wanting to know where our food comes from? The whole "buy local" movement? For example, I won't shop at Walmart. 
> 
> Just thinking out loud. I know it's not that simple. 
> 
> If these notions, these ideologies, are pathological, and they run against our natures, I don't believe that we are so plastic to lose completely our facility for community, especially if community is a precious aspect of human experience and as much a part of what it is to be human as having eyes, or lungs. 
> 
> So speech seems to be the one possible antidote if not the only possible one, and this is why I agree with you that the CHAT is so important.
> 
> Still, I'm wondering why no one is interested in exploring what I've said about the loss of emotion in speech?
> 
> Kind regards,
> 
> Annalisa