Slavery

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Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2008 05:41 pm
arjen wrote:
I wonder how you see the "enslavement" by socienty though. Call it a second opinion. How do you see that happening?


Sometimes I see slavery in society, not the physical slavery of chains, but the slavery to such concepts as 'class', riches or opportunity. Perhaps you might call me paranoid, but I see slavery in Hip-hop; young people engaged in social rites and categorizations that seem entirely relevant to lyrics and style of a genre of pop-music. The punks seemed to do away with any propositions they incurred in pop-music, but these hip-hop heads seem to believe, suffer and engage with everything said by what I may call wantonly capitalist rappers.

Some people also seem to believe that racism is a term reserved for 'white' people - that the majority of Europeans in the West are the sole proprietor of racist dictats - but I see a huge proportion of racism bred by immigrants; perhaps they choose to group in neighbourhooods together, or cling together in gangs, some 'white', some 'black' or others 'hispanic', maybe they choose to spread values via music or politics: surely this is a sign of racism affecting all racial parts of society, and not just a few right-wing 'white' capitalists. Maybe I don't know, but from what I've seen a huge number of people of all races are racist, even when in 'multi-cultural' places.

My point, which I hope some might discuss, is that music/racism are genres of society that enslave people in order to meet ends that may not have been predicted by the propagators.
 
Zetetic11235
 
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2008 06:09 pm
@Doobah47,
Music is an art form, it does not enslave, people enslave themselfs within the prisons in their minds. Shackles of emotion and pride. There is a caste system in america and there are ways to get around it.

A poor man can become a rich one, unless he does not have sufficient ability, the weak flounder and perish and the strong survive ideally. Conjunctly, the immoral, greedy and cowardly try to control those who are hindered by decency and respect. To an extent, the system is corrupt, but it is also natural and a part of the human condition.

Ours is not a system which is insurmountable, anyone with a good head on their shoulders can find a way to rise out of the bottom. You have to, it seems have a certain combination of strenghts to make it in this system, if you do not you are screwed, so in a sense it is luck, but most people have the necessary traits.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2008 06:20 pm
@Zetetic11235,
There are a few interesting things about racism and hip hop. First off, you cannot say that hip hop is entirely African American. You do not imply that, but that is just to set it out.

But there is an interesting section of existentialism called African existentialism that I found very interesting that may lend some good points to this discussion. Hip hop is a product of an African American existential dilemma, where in order to be seen as a separate and distinguished minority, it becomes apparent to the hip hop community that they must shine twice as bright to be seen half as much. This is the same dilemma that has plagued women's rights and equality, where a woman must try twice as hard to be considered half as good as a man. So the Hip hop community suffers from something called hyper-visibility, where ideas and notions like extreme wealth and excess lifestyles stake claim to a weak foothold in a society which is a white normative framework.

Remember too that racism is not only white, but there is also reverse racism, which is meant to counter a racist propagation. Racism swings both ways.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2008 08:29 pm
@VideCorSpoon,
VideCorSpoon wrote:
Hip hop is a product of an African American existential dilemma.
The brilliant Cornel West, formerly of Harvard and I believe now at Princeton, commented on this more generally, i.e. the prevalence of nihilism in the urban black communities. Nihilism is, of course, the central challenge of the existential crisis. Hip hop doesn't have a single, uniform message, but it is generally a very important cultural outlet that this crisis flows through.
 
VideCorSpoon
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 07:48 am
@Aedes,
Aedes,

I read one of Cornell West's books a while ago, called Race matters... it's a very good read if you are interested in black existentialism. There is a section on black leadership which I found particularly interesting as there is the high probability that there may be a black president. In so many words, the black community wants a black leader instead of a leader who is black. This is a belief that is always mirrored at the annual American black caucus every year. But somewhere along the lines, the African American community thoroughly disagreed with that assessment and went in the other direction. Funny how academic assessment never really mirrors public sentiment.

I don't know if you are aware of this, but Cornell West produced a few philosophical hip-hop songs, which I think are still on his website. There just... well... there just awesome. I'll try to find them because... well... you'll just have to hear them to contemplate the sheer awesomeness of each track. Whether it be Princeton or Harvard, philosophers don't make the best rappers.

I agree with your assessment that nihilism is a central theme of black existentialism. But I also think the counter parts of nihilism in existentialism have value as well, like anxiety and dread.
 
Arjen
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 10:08 am
@VideCorSpoon,
I think you guys are going a bit offtopic, so I would like to stipulate what Doobah47 points out and widen the thought so it will be easier to see. Doobah47 is saying that there are certain 'thought-objects', such as racism or hip-hop, that have effects on people in the sense that people start behaving in certain ways.

I think that the broader issue at hand is that people create 'thought-object' with certain values attached to the, I might value 'rock' as being 'great' and therefore buy an electric guitar (perhaps a not so great example, but the best that came up). In that sense 'thought-objects' have consequences for the behavior of people. A government may try to teach all the inhabitants the 'thought-object' 'nationalism', which has the result that millions of people will line up in trenches on opposite sides and charge into the enemy machinegun fire when told to, all because 'nationalism' is 'good'.

In the same way a government may teach its inhabitants certain aesthetic ideals to value. That can ultimately lead to people seperating certain lives or certain behavior as 'right' or 'wrong', as Nietzsche argues in his 'Zur Genealogie der Moral (jenseits von Gut und Bose)'. In that sense people would start to think that there is a certain kind of behavior which creates a judgement on the self of the inhabitants and, when showing certain behavior, people might think deserving of punishment. This, in fact, is the enslavement Doobah47 refers to. When thinking deserving of punishment, one has made onself a slave to that which will punish.
 
de budding
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 10:46 am
@Arjen,
Arjen,

I have one major good/evil divide which I follow and which I expect others to follow and it is social consideration. I expect people to consider my feelings and situation and act accordingly because I do the same and I think this is how we should all act. Of course this isn't the case and I am certainly enslaved by it, no matter how inconsiderate and belligerent the idiots around me are I will still open a door for the... Am I a coward?



Any way I think it is clear that even thought I pay no attention to the government or people around me I have created my own good/evil divide and enslaved myself.

Dan.

 
Arjen
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 10:57 am
@de budding,
de_budding wrote:

I have one major good/evil divide which I follow and which I expect others to follow and it is social consideration. I expect people to consider my feelings and situation and act accordingly because I do the same and I think this is how we should all act. Of course this isn't the case and I am certainly enslaved by it, no matter how inconsiderate and belligerent the idiots around me are I will still open a door for the... Am I a coward?

This is not an ethical discussion.

Quote:



This is the aestethical ideal Nietzsche refers to.

Quote:

Any way I think it is clear that even thought I pay no attention to the government or people around me I have created my own good/evil divide and enslaved myself.

You only think this. You are paying attention and you have been paying attention for a long time. The trick is to make you think that you are able to choose A from B, while A and B are really choices on the same level, thereby having the same consequences.

--edit--
The fact that you think the above proves the slavery I'd say.
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 12:20 pm
@Doobah47,
So from what I understand, Culture is Slavery?
Are we now trying to tear down what makes us human?
Or are we trying to superimpose a meta culture?
Crying Slave to Culture is like crying Slave to Drinking Water.
SuperImposing a PC culture would inevitably, if possible, be implemented by it own "elite group" creating its own "slavery" as defined by the original post.
 
Arjen
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 12:46 pm
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead,

It indeed can be said that culture enslaves people. It enslaves people because it tears down what makes us human: subjectivity. Culture in that sense is a metaculture, one that I feel (as Nietzsche does) should be resisted. Crying slave to culture is like crying slave to the notion that drinking water is 'not human'.

No superimposion will ever create slavery if the superimposion is seen as superimposing instead of a natural truth which cannot be doubted. In fact, the thought of 'elites' and 'slaves' are merely 'thought-objects' which people choose to obey (or not). They are not grounded in reality in any way.

I hope you will see, Gishisdead, that indeed, it is the idea of the validation of culture which can mean slavery if it is valued as 'binding' and overruling 'natural order'.
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 12:54 pm
@Arjen,
Quote:
I hope you will see, Gishisdead, that indeed, it is the idea of the validation of culture which can mean slavery if it is valued as 'binding' and overruling 'natural order'.


Neitzche although fascinating, was arguing for an abstract that is in itself contra-the human condition, as well he knew. It is true that transcending agents can break free from a binding culture, however, they also become the agents of the "new" culture they create in their wake. If something is an inescapable condition, and a required natural human trait, it cannot be enslaving, just like drinking water does not enslave us to water.
 
Arjen
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 01:06 pm
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead wrote:
Neitzche although fascinating, was arguing for an abstract that is in itself contra-the human condition, as well he knew. It is true that transcending agents can break free from a binding culture, however, they also become the agents of the "new" culture they create in their wake. If something is an inescapable condition, and a required natural human trait, it cannot be enslaving, just like drinking water does not enslave us to water.

The thing is that Nietzsche argues that what suppresses these inescapable conditions are what is enslaving. Just like the thought that drinking water is 'not done' enslaves us to other, non-natural, substances. That is Nietzsche's entire point. He reasons towards moral skepticism in the sense that judgements always suppress inescapable conditions in greater of smaller manners.

Have you read Nietzsche, and if so, which works? I might be able to elaborate using the work in question.
 
Arjen
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 01:11 pm
@Arjen,
I have asked Aedes to move this topic to the aesthetical subforum on the following grounds:

It is an aesthetical discussion because it is not about the question if aesthetical ideals are 'good' or 'bad', but about what these aesthetical ideals are and how they exist, or are used. There is no ethical question involved in the discussion.
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 01:36 pm
@Arjen,
Quote:
That is Nietzsche's entire point. He reasons towards moral skepticism in the sense that judgements always suppress inescapable conditions in greater of smaller manners.

Exactly, what I'm trying to get accross is that he never gets past, as far as I know, the perpetual cycle of culture creation, that once a tradition is broken a new tradition is formed from the breaking.

Quote:
non-natural, substances

Also the idealist abstraction disallows the possibility of culture being natural. And maybe some clarification of culture here would help. I using the general anthropological definition, which presupposes that it is natural.

And I've only read Twighlight, Zarathustra, and several 3rd party comentaries.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 01:42 pm
@Arjen,
Arjen wrote:
I have asked Aedes to move this topic to the aesthetical subforum on the following grounds:

It is an aesthetical discussion because it is not about the question if aesthetical ideals are 'good' or 'bad', but about what these aesthetical ideals are and how they exist, or are used. There is no ethical question involved in the discussion.
Thanks for the suggestion, Arjen.

This is a sociological discussion more than anything else. It certainly draws on themes that are pertinent to both ethics and aesthetics. It doesn't fit perfectly into any one category we have here, but my preference is to keep it in the Ethics forum. The main reason is that questions of social victimization strike at the heart of ethics. The differential nature of how victimization is understood, perceived, and expressed by different groups in our society is one of the great challenges in our policy decisions, and the application of finite political and fiscal resources to societal problems DOES depend on how we perceive and prioritize societal injustices.

So let's keep it here and see where the thread goes. I'd rather avoid getting into discussion about the discussion -- let's not worry too much about what forum it's in unless it's overtly inappropriate, and let the conversation carry on.

Paul
 
Arjen
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 01:52 pm
@Aedes,
The point you are missing is that the discussion is not whether it is 'good' or 'bad' that this happens, nor 'if' it happens, but how it works. That is aesthetics and nothing else. Leaving it here can only serve to cloud the discussion at hand.
 
Aedes
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 01:55 pm
@Arjen,
Arjen wrote:
The point you are missing is that the discussion is not whether it is 'good' or 'bad' that this happens, nor 'if' it happens, but how it works. That is aesthetics and nothing else. Leaving it here can only serve to cloud the discussion at hand.
The discussion is what it is, whether or not it's in an ethics forum or an aesthetics forum. I agree that it isn't entirely appropriate for ethics. I disagree that it is appropriate for aesthetics. That aside, THIS discussion is now going way off topic and we're at risk of hijacking the thread. So thanks again for the thoughts, now let's leave this alone and get back on point.
 
de budding
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 02:32 pm
@Arjen,
Quote:

The trick is to make you think that you are able to choose A from B, while A and B are really choices on the same level, thereby having the same consequences.


The same consequences? making empathy your first port of call when you see some one coming has the same consequences as doing what you fancy?
 
Arjen
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 03:33 pm
@de budding,
Aedes wrote:
The discussion is what it is, whether or not it's in an ethics forum or an aesthetics forum. I agree that it isn't entirely appropriate for ethics. I disagree that it is appropriate for aesthetics. That aside, THIS discussion is now going way off topic and we're at risk of hijacking the thread. So thanks again for the thoughts, now let's leave this alone and get back on point.

But getting back ontopic would lead it away from ethics.

de_budding wrote:
The same consequences? making empathy your first port of call when you see some one coming has the same consequences as doing what you fancy?

It is the same level: choosing between the mode of conduct is not really relevent. It only shows your definitions of 'right' and 'wrong'; the aestehtical ideal you have chosen as 'thought-object' of 'how it should be'. The reality of the matter is that it is very hard to support any action by a reasoning which would be in any way realistic. So, the real question is: "why act in such a manner?".
 
de budding
 
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2008 03:59 pm
@Arjen,
Arjen,

Arjen wrote:

Why act in such a manner?
[CENTER]__________________[/CENTER]



...Because we have evolved the ability to empathize; it is extremely practical and helpful for everyone to simply, pay immediate attention to each others states of mind and body, in-situation, when occurring in the vicinity of each other.

This leads to a host of healthy benefits and is very pleasant compared to the usual conduct of now.

Dan.
 
 

 
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