Re: Durkheim redux

From: Kenneth Van Oost (
Date: Thu 05 May 2005 - 19:19:58 GMT

  • Next message: Bill Spight: "Re: Mutant swarms and copying fidelity"

    From: Scott Chase <> To: <> Sent: Saturday, April 16, 2005 8:09 PM
    > Maybe not so much across cultures, but more so within
    > a culture (or a nation). We could each perceive the
    > world through lenses similar to others in our
    > respective countries when it comes to matters of
    > patritotism and national pride. Taking it down a few
    > notches, we might perceive sports similarly to fellow
    > fans of a certain team. The sports franchise is a
    > social institution and we identify with it and get
    > pulled in by emblems, mascots and songs and share
    > these socifacts with fellow fans, just as we share a
    > comon flag and national anthem with other citizens.

    Maybe overdue, but...

    Hm, I doubt the sense of collectiviness within your explanation, Scott ! Like you know, I ain 't that keen on what is called " being obedient as part of a collective project or as part of the common will. " I like more what Rousseau stands for, " I obey myself and only myself in those parts that any collective project ' wants ' me to or in those parts that the common will ' asks ' me to."

    That does ask a lot more from myself... self- responsibility, tole- rance and an open mind, but I do think there is more to say about being in harmony with a collective project ( society) than simply follow the rules. My self- building scheme via Memes- concept just fits right in.

    On the other hand, thus in my mind there is no ' collective Self ' like C. Taylor argued. That people are moved by disasters or over the death of a Princess is no point, but the notion that just a thing like a collective self ' exist
    ' is too much_ each of us individual is and has been conditioned by past informative input and is cascaded forward, and thus responds accordingly, due to those past info. Collectively, we see a people mourn, but we look at the wrong marker, again !

    We could even say, that the mourning is a by- product of evolutionary genetic and memetic lineages to get people ( who in other circumstances were alone on their tiny island) together. Your sports example just shows that. To get people in the mood for freaks like Hitler/ Jones or Pol Pot, people must IMO deny who they are, or forced it all up, and neither in cases of sport or by the tsunami or by the death of Diana that is what happened.

    In the specific case of < 30 Germany, that is what people did, they finally denied who they really were, and one and only fragment of what Germany stood for ( the heritage of the Weimar Replublik), nationalism and patriotism were blown up beyond comprehension
    ( Deutsche Kündigkeit and Deutschland über alles came instead) by Hitlers propaganda machine ( although Germany past history played its role too and people ' believed' that they were more human
    ( übermensch) than men himself. We all know the result....



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