Dr. Tamura, Slack on “Sontag says…”

Sontag says whenever people feel safe, they will be indifferent
But what about those who are no longer safe in their own homes
Living in constant turmoil, the inevitable caving in
Familial betrayal lingering in the tense air
A false promise that cuts deeper than war itself
No headlines, no breaking news
I felt safe because I didn’t know

Dr.Robb, Slack on Bullshit

Reading Frankfurt’s analysis into “Bullshit” gave me a new way to look at the word. Before reading, I initially conceptualized bullshit as the same entity as lying, only I was never allowed to call something bullshit out loud. Throughout the reading, Frankfurt tries to define bullshit through the use of other words. For example, he is able to get an idea of the meaning through the definition of the word humbug. This leads to the basis of BS not being a total lie because it can have some truth within it. As I read about how Frankfurt views BS in society, it made me think about how more accepted BSing is over lying. When someone bullshits a speech, an essay, or is called a bullshitter, society does not categorize them with the same offense as someone who for example lied about breaking a window. When I read the passage about Pascal’s situation, it made me consider that there are two levels to BS. One in where the BS is done in a non-harmful way as in Pascal’s situation, and one where it is done to partially deceive for an advantage, i.e. appearing smarter. I peg the latter as being just as harmful and sometimes worse than lying. This also made me wonder how others view the idea of bullshit regarding its relation with lying. Do you think that society has made it to where people proudly accept being called a good BSer but take offense to being called a liar?

Dr. Tamura, Hiku

Mirror a false smile
Conceal the trembles within
A simple…I’m good

Dr. Fache, Slack on “Discourse on Colonialism”

In Césaire’s Discourse of Colonialism, it is discussed how colonization ruins not only those colonized, but also the humanity of the colonizers. While reading this article I often thought back to Sara Baarttman. Césaire mentions how in the relationship between the colonizer and the colonized there is only room for forced labor, degraded masses, etc. This made me think back to Baarttman as even though it is unsure if she came to Europe on her “own accord”, we know that her only option in staying in her home that was colonized was going through forced labor. The exploitation of her body against her will in Europe was another form of forced labor she was pushed into due to the imbalance in power. Furthermore, there was a degradation in the masses that came to watch her be exploited. As Césaire mentions, the colonizer becomes uncivilized and is awakened to a buried instinct of violence and hatred. Each person that contributed to the exploitation of Baarttman, even those who came to see the exhibit, were degraded in their human nature and opened themselves to be filled with hatred against other races. By ignoring her own discomfort for their own pleasure, the European citizens allowed the colonization process to make them the uncivilized individuals. I thought the connection made to Hitler was very significant, as many of the people who may have not supported colonization and racial hatred, allowed it to continue. This connection also demonstrates that how even with the long period between colonialism and the Holocaust, Europeans still had the same mind set of turning their backs against groups that were being openly oppressed in front of them.

Dr. Wills, Slack on Eucharist

I found the linkages between the customs and understandings of Judaism and Christianity interesting to read about. For example, in the passage it mentioned how the table ritual of last supper is similar to the Jewish Passover table ritual. I was also intrigued by the connection of the idea with sacrifices between the two religions. Since Christianity developed after Judaism, it is unsurprising why some customs come from Judaism; however, this stood out to me as I often see the two has two distinct entities that only have the Torah/Old Testament in common.
Since the understanding and customs have changed so much over time, is it valid for people to interpret it as absolute fact?

Dr. Denham, Slack on Never Look Away

I really enjoyed watching this film and how it handled a different aspect of Nazism. Usually in movies built on the premise of Nazism, and involving Germany, the villain is often someone who is inflicting harm on Jewish individuals. Dr. Seeband’s villainous character stood out to me as he was focused on eugenics and purity, which is often not played out on film. I also found it interesting how he was willing to go as far as performing an abortion, without consent, on his daughter in order to keep his bloodline “pure”.

Does Kurt ever make the connection between Dr.Seeband and his aunt Elisabeth? Did his family ever find out what happened to Elisabeth or did they just assume she was killed? With the deaths of his father, uncle, and aunt, I wished the film went into a little more detail about the effects those had on him growing up.

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