but we are actually all winds
ever more than before
even ever more than before 
gaining 
speeding 
booming
towards future 
speeding
and redeeming laughters
and happiest laughters
Start page JUMO | Code for America | good.is |
“If you want to free a society, just give them internet access. Because people, the young guys, you know, are all going to go out and see biased media, see the truth about other nations and their own nation and they’re going to be able to contribute and collaborate together.”

Jot: Plurality, Hybridity vs. ‘Identity’ (Edward Said, and then, Benjamin Stora)

Well, Algeria really isn’t my subject area - and I should defer much - but I owe a lot to some of Camus work (not in Leftist sense. To me he was more about plurality and hybridity. Though, some would say these ideas are Left’s asset. But in my sense, it’s not about idea, it’s about - stance, attitude.) 

Last time I googled around re: Identity, Hybridity, and Identity and Edward Said, his name might have shown up few times but I failed to pay attention. 

But now here it is. 

Though again, even if you focus on Hybridity or Plurality - it’s just ideas - and your attitude, stance, aggressiveness, approaches - etc could remain just as same (as people touting ‘Identity’ thing.)

I don’t know it’s something about Algeria. Or it’s something probably about 60s or Post-Marxist types, very limited ‘few’ among them probably. American Left’s translate and import industry, I think, basically erased entirely about this Plurality and Hybridity perspective or its tone too. (And boy, it sells like hotcakes.) 

Though, Benjamin Stora is Trotskyist. (I really don’t buy Marxists. I dread people who read Karl Marx and doesn’t come off being outraged about how he set up the entire con-game on humanity.) 

January 18, 2013, 5:03pm   1 note
▸ Edward Said: The Morning After, London Review of Books [Said's take on Oslo Accords]

- 21 October 1993

And this is by far, the most intense ‘thinking’ piece by Edward Said I read - encountered. It’s really intense.

And that means - I say - readers have to think and seek way forward as intense - and expansive as the author did.

At some points, I do feel it sounds like he is really writing to his fellow Palestinians.

Bu then reality is - I really just don’t witness anyone actually thinking this intensely and expansively. 

But that’s always the case about humans. Unfortunately.  

One big name. 

It arrives among us just to be quoted and tossed around. Always impossible to find real successors.

(I’m so genuinely sick of this pattern, but that’s always the case.) 

[…] one can already see in Palestine’s potential statehood the lineaments of a marriage between the chaos of Lebanon and the tyranny of Iraq.

If this isn’t to happen, a number of quite specific issues need to be addressed. One is the diaspora Palestinians, who originally brought Arafat and the PLO to power, kept them there, and are now relegated to permanent exile or refugee status. Since they comprise at least half of the total Palestinian population their needs and aspirations are not negligible. A small segment of the exile community is represented by the various political organisations ‘hosted’ by Syria. A significant number of independents (some of whom, like Shafik al-Hout and Mahmoud Darwish, resigned in protest from the PLO) still have an important role to play, not simply by applauding or condemning from the sidelines, but by advocating specific alterations in the PLO’s structure, trying to change the triumphalist ambience of the moment into something more appropriate, mobilising support and building an organisation from within the various Palestinian communities all over the world to continue the march towards self-determination. These communities have been singularly disaffected, leaderlees and indifferent since the Madrid process began.

One of the first tasks is a Palestinian census, which has to be regarded not just as a bureaucratic exercise but as the enfranchisement of Palestinians wherever they are. Israel, the US and the Arab states – all of them – have always opposed a census: it would give the Palestinians too high a profile in countries where they are supposed to be invisible, and before the Gulf War, it would have made it clear to varions Gulf governments how dependent they were on an inappropriately large, usually exploited ‘guest’ community. Above all, opposition to the census stemmed from the realisation that, were Palestinians to be counted all together, despite dispersion and dispossession, they would by that very exercise come close to constituting a nation rather than a mere collection of people.

[…]



Dec 21, 2012, 6:20pm  1 note      

 
“the challenge now is – I wouldn’t call it anything other than coexistence. How does one co-exist with people whose religions are different, whose traditions and languages are different but who form part of the same community or polity in the national sense? How do we accept difference without violence and hostility?”

Edward Said ‘On Orientalism’ (1998)

  1. But then I’m not sure this is how he read, or how his works are used by - his readers or followers - 
  2. (or ‘quoters’. Just quoting his names and the word ‘Orientalism’)
  3. Or if he survived to see what happened in Iraq and so on - (he died in 2003 Sept) - how things developed after 9/11 - he might have changed his view on his choice of coexistence? 
  4. How much actual, real discussion and - exploration, attempts have been around, and are outhere right now? 

December 21, 2012, 4:47pm  0 notes

▸ Edward Said 'On Orientalism' (1998), 'The challenge now is – I wouldn't call it anything other than coexistence.'

  1. Characterization: Palestine is (or was, historically) a case of complex coexistence (not sure true or false)
  2. Characterization 2: Palestine has been fought over past several thousands of years (not sure true or false) 
  3. Edward Said does not say ‘Expel Jews’ from Palestine/Israel. Then how he came to decide so? How much did he weigh the opposing stance from his fellow Palestinians? (He was Christian - minority and then basically left Palestine) Did he weight these fierce oppositions - or just bubbling over? (Coexistence - secular, pluralistic One State option) *Need to check how much debate was there while he was alive. Who challenged him on this? 

And how this his message? on Coexistence - went where? How it is actually read - and how it’s understood or criticized? 

Or just rejected? But then how and why?

Palestine is so important in this respect because of its local complexities, let’s say Arabs and Jews, Arab Muslims and Arab Christians and Israeli Jews of themselves very mixed backgrounds. I mean we’re talking about Polish Jews, Russian Jews, American Jews, Yemeni Jews, Iraqi Jews, Indian Jews, it’s a fairly complex mosaic somehow finding a way to live together, on land that is drenched, saturated with significance on a world scale, unlike any other country in the world. I mean it’s holy to three of the major religions and every inch of it has been combed over and fought over for the last several thousand years.

And the pattern so far has been the Zionist pattern which is to say that ‘it’s promised to us, we are the chosen people, everybody else is sort of second rate, throw them out or treat them as second class citizens.’ In contrast to that, some of us, not everybody, but many Palestinians have said, ‘well we realize that we are being asked to pay the price for what happened to the Jews in Europe, under the Holocaust, it was an entirely Christian and European catastrophe in which the Arabs played no part, and we are being dispossessed, displaced by the victims. We’ve become the victims of the victims.

But, as I say, not all of us say, well they should be thrown out. Because we have been thrown out and so we have another vision, which is a vision of co-existence, in which Jew and Arab, Muslim, Christian and Jew can live together in some polity, which I think it requires a kind of creativity, and invention that is possible – vision that would replace the authoritarian, hierarchical model. But this idea that somehow we should protect ourselves against the infiltrations, the infections of the Other, is, I think, the most dangerous idea at the end of the twentieth century. Unless we find ways to do it, and there are no short cuts to it, unless we find ways to do this, you know there is going to be wholesale violence of a sort represented by the Gulf War, by the killings in Bosnia, the Rwandan massacres and so on. I mean those are the pattern of emerging conflict that is extremely dangerous and needs to be counteracted and I think therefore it’s correct to say that the challenge now is – I wouldn’t call it anything other than coexistence. How does one co-exist with people whose religions are different, whose traditions and languages are different but who form part of the same community or polity in the national sense? How do we accept difference without violence and hostility?

I’ve been interested in a field called Comparative Literature most all of my adult life and the ideal of Comparative Literature is not to show how English literature is really a secondary phenomenon to French literature or Arabic literature is kind of a poor cousin to Persian literature or any of those silly things, but to show them existing, you might say, as contrapuntal lines, in a great composition by which difference is respected and understood without coercion. And it’s that attitude I think that we need.



Source: mediaed.org

Dec 21, 2012, 4:41pm  1 note      

 
“And I would argue and in fact have argued, that the predominant mood of the Arab world is very secular.”
Edward Said, On ‘Orientalism’ (1998)

December 21, 2012, 4:21pm  0 notes

Memo: Identity/Hybridity or ‘Post-Identity’ Projects? America, Middle East, their recent history

Scavenge? on Edward Said’s warnings on ‘Identity’ and programs, projects of identity. 

  1. ref post here: http://akio.tumblr.com/post/35231041605/dug-this-up-from-google-book-search-jacques (3 quotes gathered) 
  2. Actually, it is said (said) - that Edward Said dealt with this subject in ‘Culture and Imperialism’ (1994? - Said died in 2003) 
  3. And I think Google Books search returned 32 hits on ‘Identity’ within the book. 
  • I quickly glanced through - and found not all pages are relevant to this particular discussion, but then like 
  • pp 298, 299. was very important. (Actually pp 298’s his handling of ‘Identity project’ in USA was same as - coincidentally - my take on America’s late 20th century I jotted out this morning. 'America got Tesla')

Problem is 

Said touches on both Middle East and USA - and says both are trapped in sort of insular, imploding cycles of ‘Identity politics’ - (State nationalism - coming down to the level of clan, family). 

But then - substantial backing of this (way) abstract assertion aside - 

He - I don’t think - ever came up with something for actual ‘civil society’ level. Okay so these aggressive ‘identity projects’ just leads to ruins of pesky insularities. So we need to seek something else. 

But how and what?

For USA.

For Middle East or ‘Arab world’. (or even for Israel) 

???

  1. I have to read more on this (have to find reading materials) *Hope it just doesn’t end up in bunch of ‘utterly divorced from realities’ kind of Lefty academic paper piles. 
  2. If my take on America’s ‘Identity Project’ - and Said’s take on America has similarities - I do have ideas for actual ‘civil society’ level projects. 
  3. But not sure American consciousness (its extremely simplistic emotions) can handle even its own actual history. 
  4. This is a same problem I faced with Israelis and Jewish people. They can’t really take in their actual complex episodes. They only can carry around very very simply structured stories, narratives and emotions. If something becomes too complex, they simply stop processing. 
  5. When a person can’t take in one’s own complexity, of course that person could have very hard time creating capacity for ‘Others’ (DUH.)
  6. Such a helpless conclusion. 
  7. But then, what Said found, proposed and tried actually? For - ‘post-Identity’ Civil Societies - here in USA - and in the Middle East - and elsewhere? 
November 07, 2012, 10:10pm   0 notes
Dug this up from Google Book search
Jacques Rancière: History, Politics, Aesthetics (Duke University Press, 2009)
Don’t have time to type it down. It’s a discussion log, so he is thinking and talking - he might have much rendered thought/reflection recorded somewhere. (Needs real careful approach. Yo. It’s not like he said ‘forget’ so we should forget. I think he is mostly (persistently) warning about the risk/danger of the idea of Identity and attempts/projects of Identity Politics.) 
Interview is in this academic Journal, if anyone wants to dig further. (Maybe there are free PDF copy somewhere?)
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1467-8705.00144/abstract
(On 14 May 1997, as part of the Brighton Festival, Jacqueline Rose interviewed Edward Said.)
Also see these quotes from previous Tumblr posts re: Said and Identity Politics

lenamabz:

[Edward Said] “No one today is purely one thing. Labels like Indian, or woman, or Muslim, or American are not more than starting-points, which if followed into actual experience for a moment are quickly left behind. Imperialism consolidated the mixture of cultures and identities on a global scale. But its worst and most paradoxical gift was to allow people to believe that they were only, mainly, exclusively, white, or Black, or Western, or Oriental.” - Edward Said

(And another quote circulated on Tumblr)
bombmagazine

Edward Said: But the other thing I find troubling is how the world has changed as a result. People began to think xenophobically. The worst evidence being what happened in Lebanon: Christians versus Muslims, Palestinians versus Arabs. It’s the whole problem with Israel, where people think in terms of identities.Phillip Lopate: You talk about that in Culture and Imperialism: the curse of identity politics.ES: That’s ruined a lot of lives, and that’s why I’m so resolutely against having this tremendous sense of where you belong. It’s overrated. It doesn’t give people enough of a chance to feel different, to feel like the other, which is an important feeling to have, and it’s slowly disappearing.PL: I would agree.
—BOMB 69/1999
(akio: Posted on my Tumblr here, with a long rant)
  1. Dug this up from Google Book search
  2. Jacques Rancière: History, Politics, Aesthetics (Duke University Press, 2009)
  3. Don’t have time to type it down. It’s a discussion log, so he is thinking and talking - he might have much rendered thought/reflection recorded somewhere. (Needs real careful approach. Yo. It’s not like he said ‘forget’ so we should forget. I think he is mostly (persistently) warning about the risk/danger of the idea of Identity and attempts/projects of Identity Politics.) 
  4. Interview is in this academic Journal, if anyone wants to dig further. (Maybe there are free PDF copy somewhere?)
  5. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1467-8705.00144/abstract
  6. (On 14 May 1997, as part of the Brighton Festival, Jacqueline Rose interviewed Edward Said.)
Also see these quotes from previous Tumblr posts re: Said and Identity Politics

lenamabz:

[Edward Said] “No one today is purely one thing. Labels like Indian, or woman, or Muslim, or American are not more than starting-points, which if followed into actual experience for a moment are quickly left behind. Imperialism consolidated the mixture of cultures and identities on a global scale. But its worst and most paradoxical gift was to allow people to believe that they were only, mainly, exclusively, white, or Black, or Western, or Oriental.” - Edward Said

(And another quote circulated on Tumblr)

bombmagazine

Edward Said: But the other thing I find troubling is how the world has changed as a result. People began to think xenophobically. The worst evidence being what happened in Lebanon: Christians versus Muslims, Palestinians versus Arabs. It’s the whole problem with Israel, where people think in terms of identities.

Phillip Lopate: You talk about that in Culture and Imperialism: the curse of identity politics.

ES: That’s ruined a lot of lives, and that’s why I’m so resolutely against having this tremendous sense of where you belong. It’s overrated. It doesn’t give people enough of a chance to feel different, to feel like the other, which is an important feeling to have, and it’s slowly disappearing.

PL: I would agree.

BOMB 69/1999

(akio: Posted on my Tumblr here, with a long rant)

lenamabz:

“No one today is purely one thing. Labels like Indian, or woman, or Muslim, or American are not more than starting-points, which if followed into actual experience for a moment are quickly left behind. Imperialism consolidated the mixture of cultures and identities on a global scale. But its worst and most paradoxical gift was to allow people to believe that they were only, mainly, exclusively, white, or Black, or Western, or Oriental.”

Edward Said

And previously on Tumblr - 

bombmagazine

Edward Said: But the other thing I find troubling is how the world has changed as a result. People began to think xenophobically. The worst evidence being what happened in Lebanon: Christians versus Muslims, Palestinians versus Arabs. It’s the whole problem with Israel, where people think in terms of identities.

Phillip Lopate: You talk about that in Culture and Imperialism: the curse of identity politics.

ES: That’s ruined a lot of lives, and that’s why I’m so resolutely against having this tremendous sense of where you belong. It’s overrated. It doesn’t give people enough of a chance to feel different, to feel like the other, which is an important feeling to have, and it’s slowly disappearing.

PL: I would agree.

BOMB 69/1999

  1. What is the source of this ‘Identity’ thing? The practice and idea.
  2. There have been quite varieties in human history -
  3. but I think it’s not really only limited to modern centuries. ‘Israel (vs. Romans and others)’ - had that issue thousands of years ago. Even without Romans (empire) - records of histories of conflicts do pick up ‘Identity’ (Group A vs. Group B = Us against Them perception) as major cause of escalation of conflict - locally. 
  4. And each ‘nation’ and ‘empires’ (in older sense, not modern sense) created narratives of ‘Security’, caution, deterrence etc. 
  5. Then what would really act, counter-act against this ‘Identity’ spell/meme (for its problems and toxicity, if it doesn’t have to be completely written-off)? 
  6. What would? Do we have neat, sorted, clear, reliable list of options? 
  7. I don’t think we have sorted that out yet. Not really. 
  8. (Then what are we doing?)
  • Then the problem of this influence and popularity - how Edward Said (and other contemporaries) are read - or  are actually making their readers really think and look for solutions - 
  • or just creating some ‘key phrase’, diatribe - thus antipathy and hatred repeaters, multipliers
  • What are they doing really? 
  • My take is fairly negative. They really aren’t even thinking. Harsh. But that’s the case I believe. 
  • And I think that could ‘bog down’ easily like 2 or 3, even more ‘generations’ down the line. We saw that in Marxism and Communism/Left. Academics, quasi-academics, writers, activists, there are so many of them haven’t changed their positions and discourse - approaches and perspectives - like ever since. 
  • And worse, this ‘Edward Said’ and other contemporaries are pretty much a sub-grade mutation of Marxism - I tend to think. 
  • The types who can’t deal with complexity of realities, not economics or financial subjects - goes into this identity, culture, root politics thing. 
  • And I often find ‘actualities’ on the ground - surrounding ‘identities’ tend to be inserted into something far more complex and actual/real than some papers or books tend to portray. 

Without really looking at the issue of 5. and 6. 

It’s been too much of ‘simplistic’ hype and fad element surrounding this Said and Orientalism and Anti-Orientalism - 

But then how do we find and build - better ways? Should be possible. Doable. Then how do I or do some of us find starting points? 

Other (weak) points I’ve been putting out is 

  1. Why not Hybridity rather than Identity? (Yeah, expat generations are still actually small in numbers. Not accepted in USA or Europe, and also face estrangement at their homelands. But then - what we got to lay out clearly and ask ‘Others’ (to us) to think about? [*Why modern thinking always lead to ‘conclusions’ others have to accept (*politics and discourse of condemnation) - why we can’t approach like making list of requests we want other positions to consider and respond?]
  2. And why we have the term and idea like ‘racist’ - but we don’t have antonym for it?

So driven by angers? 

And then what shall we do? 

September 06, 2012, 11:42am   324 notes