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A Blog About Culture

Recognition, Situation, Identity, Reality

Or Academic Immaturity.

As I think more about the nature of this blog, I find that noticing, isolating, and analyzing cultural occurrences strike me as immature practices. It’s one thing to say “Ok, here’s the world. This is what it’s like (in my opinion).” It’s another to make something or to suggest something. In some respects, I find it quite impossible to create a theory (based on my own ideas of the impracticality of production).

My main question is what is the point? What’s the point of cultural theory? To say “This is how it is?”  Why does that matter to anyone? Karl Marx, in Theses on Feuerbach, answered, “Philosophers have hitherto only interpreted the world in various ways; the point is to change it.” Okay, Karl.

Understand, then control.

It’s pretty much a motto I can apply to any aspect of my life- not in a manipulative way, but in a good way. Understand the culture you’re in. Once you can do that, you can make changes to control the parts you want to improve. That’s what my point is in all of this.

On paper, it’s easy to say. Just do it. Develop an idea and then implement it. I feel as though it’s not always possible. I was brimming with this kind of academic angst of insufficiency when a classmate of mine shared the website of Provisions Library, “a research, education and production center investigating the intersections of arts and social change” that is physically located at the campus of George Mason University.

I clicked around on the site, loving everything I was reading and wishing I was on staff there– even formulating a plan to foist myself into its sanctum (I live about 20 minutes away) — when I happened to fall into the “meridian” of Philosophy and Critical Studies. There, on that page, was a more eloquent version of everything I’d been feeling. I recommend you go read that instead of me right now. If you are reading me.

If our understanding of reality is theory-laden – we understand the world according to a set of engrained theoretical approaches that function like a pair of intellectual glasses – does our use of critical thinking to understand our reality only add another layer of theoretical nuance? — Provisions Library

Does it? Probably. Is that what I’m doing on this blog, adding just another layer of “Oh hey, look at that!” Is it immature? Yes. I’m not ready yet to say anything. I’m still trying to understand, to bring my thoughts together. I think that’ll always happen. I think that’s okay. It’s okay for that to be my life right now, because maybe it will inspire something in someone else, someone who can do something about it.

Read the reference: Philosophy and Critical Studies (Provisions Library).


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