“The need of reason is not inspired by the quest for truth but by the quest for meaning. And truth and meaning are not the same” ~ Hannah Arendt Hannah Arendt’s The Life of the Mind turned out to be quite different from what I had imagined it would be. I had underestimated how much […]Read more "Some thoughts on Hannah Arendt’s ‘Life of the Mind’"
“I am out with lanterns, looking for myself.” This quote from one of Emily Dickinson’s letters, while it did not seem to mean much to her in the context of which she wrote it, that being an account of moving to a new house, made me think about an anecdote that I read once. A […]Read more "“I am out with lanterns, looking for myself”"
“We must go back and find a trail on the groundback of the forest and mountain on the slow land;we must begin to circle on the intricate sod.By such wild beginnings without help we may findthe small trail on through the buffalo-bean vines. We must go back with noses and the palms of our hands,and […]Read more "Meditations on Poetry – 2"
Jacaranda, Shirley Kaufman “Because the branches hang down with blossomsfor only a few weeks, lavender clumpsthat let go quicklyand drop to the ground, because the flowers are so delicateeven their motion through the airbruises them,and they lie where they falllike tiny pouches of shriveled skin, because our lives are sagging with marvelsready to fail us,clusters […]Read more "Meditation on Poetry – 1"
Much has already been written about the link between masculinity and anti-mask wearing beliefs. In an interview for Mother Jones, political scientist Christina Wolbrecht remarks, for instance, that traditional masculinity and American manhood is built upon an identity and performance of strength, vigor, and health, and a rejection of weakness; it glorifies independence, individual freedom, […]Read more "On Men “Taking a Stand” against wearing Masks during COVID"
Eva Illouz provides a salient framing of why some men, typically white, heterosexual men may draw on the concepts of “political correctness” and “cancel culture” when faced with feminist based activism to change gender scripts and relationships between men and women. Illouz, in her book, Why Love Hurts, writes: “because femininity is defined, by and […]Read more "Notes on Cancel Culture and White Men"
“the exercise of freedom can and does generate … distress” ~ Eva Illouz “The terms of the bargain between men and women are shaped by their emotional positions in the romantic transaction. While in the nineteenth century, masculinity was expressed by emotional steadfastness and by the almost ostentatious display of men’s capacity to make and keep […]Read more "On Commitment Phobia and Commitment Phobic Men"
How can (heterosexual and white) men talk about the emotional abuse in intimate relationships that they experience without losing sight of important gender differences? How can we frame what is happening to such men, the emotional and psychological violence they undoubtedly experience, while recognizing the historical, cultural, social, and political context of patriarchy, the inequalities […]Read more "Making Sense of Emotional Abuse in Intimate Heterosexual Relationships"
In her book, The End of Love: A Sociology of Negative Relations, Eva Illouz dedicates one chapter to ‘pre-modern courtship’ and normative certainty, and traces its transformation towards sexual liberation and the collapse of the traditional certainty that courtship rituals enabled. Her book is partly an exploration on how relationships are formed in a context […]Read more "Grammars of Social Bonding: Between Courtship and Tinder"
“… life continues, but time has somehow stopped … there is no more time here, not any more” “… there is an implicit acknowledgment that the hopes created by postwar electronica or by the euphoric dance music of the 1990s have evaporated — not only has the future not arrived, it no longer seems possible. […]Read more "Non-Places, Temporal Anomalities, and Capitalism"