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  • That is an essay I probably wouldn't have gotten, wouldn't even have made it all the way through, as little as two or three years ago. Everything from the writing style to the content is a challenge for me to read and understand. I appreciate the link.
    all of my datas and histories???? that's a lot of datas and histories i've been around for like 7 years!!!

    um idk i've been busy. school is actually getting pretty interesting now that all the GEs and whatnot are done. also, i've been working like 30 hour weeks up until this week, which has actually been a lot of fun surprisingly.
    Hahahaha! Every thread in Intel should start like this.

    If you're tired of that, drop Foucault for awhile and post an essay about something you actually like in the non-fiction writing thread.

    I just finished applying for a combined grad program in Film and East Asian Languages and Literatures, which is the only program I applied to, so hopefully that works out. I'm still in the middle of my year of doing nothing (useful), but it gives me time to read a few good books at least. Speaking of which, you mentioned you were reading the autobiography of Malcolm X. I have that on my bookshelves somewhere, but I've never picked it up. From your post on the "KHI Book Club" thread, I take it you'd recommend it?
    I assume you're referring to the thread for non-fiction writers? Excellent!
    Sorry for the belated response, the last week or so has been a pretty hectic time.

    These are all ideas I'm very familiar with - and what causes me to court these other perspectives is, in the first instance, the worry that I'm too comfortable saying patriarchy is evil, capitalism is evil, we are constructed by society etc, and not taking seriously enough any counter-arguments. Secondly, and more problematically, as un-intuitive as this sounds, what has most influenced my perspective on this is talking to men about these issues. Like we’ve both acknowledged many people are - to greater or lesser extents, and whether they realize it or not – misogynist. So yes, it’s possible that I’ve rather too generously entertained other interpretations of bedroom kinks just so I don’t have to keep having the awkward arguments where I’m calling out male friends on‘acting out’ patriarchy to the detriment of woman. It often ends with an aporia: I had a debate with a friend, and he said “I can’t unlike what I like.What do you expect me to do?" (of course I would have perhaps proffered an'enlighten yourself', but telling that to a friend is so patronizing); another friend said "Please reassure me that I'm not being judged" (and I thus didn't have the heart to really say what I would have liked).

    Although I'm tempted to go on a rant here, I'm sure you've heard most of it before - how, as a female, is it almost never conducive to critique practices in the bedroom that seem to be misogynistic. And I only use that example because it's something I've personally experienced, in other cases too, I think it's a case of acknowledging 'if you can't beat them, join them' is the best philosophy for a hassle free life - though I'm not necessarily saying I subscribe to that.

    Well, owing to completely running out of money, and not wanting to be a statistic (25% of 16-24 year olds are unemployed here), I sort of ill-advisedly accepted the first job I was offered, which is a position in academic publishing - similar to what I was doing prior to my masters, but I'd say it will be less exciting, and significantly less well-paid. It’s pretty annoying, because living in London is insanely expensive, and my tolerance for living on the poverty line is increasingly vanishing. SIGH. I guess that’s life though!

    Btw, I saw in a thread that you like Circa Survive! Me too - I rarely listen to music of that (ambiguous?) genre anymore, but they’re my guilty pleasure!

    (Sorry, I have no idea why my formatting is messing up so much?)
    Chinese Language and Comparative Literature (French and English) in undergrad. I taught English in China for two years, but I'm "in between" careers and/or grad school at the moment. In other words, doing nothing useful, which is probably why I'm on the forums so much.
    "I realized that the purpose of writing is to inflate weak ideas, obscure poor reasoning, and inhibit clarity. With a little practice, writing can be an intimidating and impenetrable fog!" -Calvin and Hobbes, Bill Watterson

    Is this why you won't post in Intel? :(
    I would have agreed with you maybe even as recently as six months ago, but my mind has changed on this. Yes, I completely agree that women as well as men can be misogynist. Definitely. Not to mention, I recently read a study that confirmed something I suspected all along ? owing to the neuroplasticity of the brain, watching porn can and does alter taste: hence what we desire is not irrevocably and innately hardwired into us. So those who claim a free pass for their sexual idiosyncrasies are often being na?ve of how exactly those desires come to be?(I?m specifically thinking about the pervasive objectification of women by the media, and correspondingly, by men ).

    And yet (!) I think that, in many cases, what happens in the bedroom CAN stay in the bedroom. I?m not suggesting that the bedroom is some kind of magical vacuum free from all these structures we?ve been talking about. But it is at least potentially specific and private (i.e. this ?act of domination? was a consensual act between two individuals that is only going to take place in this specific situation, and no other). I?ll grant that maybe such behaviours are a reaction to being brainwashed (though we just don?t know enough to say this for sure), but it?s possibly more a cathartic scenario, rather than one that further perpetrates violent tendencies.

    Not to mention, it?s difficult to envisage sexual intercourse without ANY power dynamic. Outside of gender and its constructs, (in a heterosexual relationship) individuals are beholden to their sex. The sexual act i.e. the very act of penetration, is ? at a physical level ? reinforcing male domination. Sex is somewhat inherently violent, not just because we figure it to be so. Yes, the penis has been often hilariously, if not harmfully, been equivocated with the pen, rockets or whatever other cultural objects so as to reinscribe patriarchy, but there?s no way of getting around the fact (or is there?!) that sexual intercourse very readily lends itself to putting a man in a dominant position. And because we are fundamentally sexual creatures, that is taken as the paradigmatic model of male-female relations. Sometimes that is subverted through the male being submissive or passive. But the point is that, at the very least, it?s difficult to achieve true balance in sexual intercourse; in the heterosexual model, it positively thrives on difference, predominately in terms of power.

    By the way, I?m amenable to having my argument undermined or even proved wrong, (I enjoy having the veil lifted from my eyes as it were) so go for it if you want to pick apart any of those points.

    Well predicted. Benjamin is my absolute favourite, albeit his writings are quite fragmentary, so sometimes I feel he remains a bit elusive, a bit of an enigma. Which is probably a good thing. In fact, I?m very interested in the Frankfurt School as a whole. Gramsci I know I?ve read something by, but I can?t remember what? hmmm ?.

    Oh yeah, it?s just as mired in bullshit as any other institution. I?m dealing with the very question of what to do right now? I just finished my master?s and my school said they wanted me back for a PHD, but it doesn?t seem like the right thing to do ? because, even if I got full funding for one, then what? ASIDE from the uncomfortability of the hypocrisy, as we know, academia is highly competitive, with much fewer positions than there are candidates. So I don?t want to spend 4 years working myself to death, not only writing the PHD, but publishing, giving papers at conferences, doing other stuff to make yourself look good, and worst of all, like you said, doing a lot of ass kissing. Even then, all UK universities are research based, so then even if you got tenure its PUBLISH OR PERISH. It just sounds like a hell of a lot of hassle. I like doing things with friends, I like having other interests, I like random time wasting. That said, I always feel like I?ll probably do a PHD when the time is right, even if I?m like 60 years old. But then, how does one stay true to themselves in any profession? Honestly, I worked a 9-5 job for 2 years in between my degrees, and even though it was in academic publishing, so I supposed it would be quite removed from the corporate culture of most companies, I was very very wrong, and without going into details because this message has got insanely long, it bothered me a lot :/
    Hahaha, I'm glad you agree ;)

    To respond to the previous message, this is tricky because material motivations and power imbalances are often what turn people on. How much can we separate desire from power, given S&M and its ilk?…Lest we also forget that normal people frequently roleplay scenarios such as that of professor/student, and actually – as much as I dislike mentioning this – some women do have rape fantasies that they’ll simulate with their partner, in which case, consent certainly is the be-all-and-end-all.

    Lol, that’s fantastic. I don’t think I’d seen that before! Whilst Foucualt’s nicely anticipating some of the more positive aspects of posthumanism here, his separation of the subject and knowledge raises a whole host of other questions.

    I’ve purposely stayed away from Lacan, thus far. Zizek is an interesting one in the context of our disenchantment with academia, in that he’s completely changed what it might mean to be an academic. I mean, isn’t it great, to some extent, that we know he thinks about The Dark Knight in explicit detail, for instance? I’ve even seen pictures of his socks, which he keeps in his kitchen drawers. I find him very chaotic, and occasionally amusing, but I’m reluctant to depreciate his worth – but then again, I have a weakness for energetic thinkers, and am pretty interested in the question of utopia. I actually have one of his books that is yet to be opened – hopefully I’ll get around to it soon.
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