Posted by sigismund on June 2, 2012, at 15:54:03
In reply to Re: I'm having trouble with what normal means..., posted by sigismund on June 1, 2012, at 23:21:53
This brings to mind Alan Bennett's account of his mother's depression. Both parents were good simple people, he had a scholarship to Cambridge (?), his mother decides that she needs to 'branch out a bit' and, having consulted some women's magazines about what is normal, gets in some sherry and biscuits and asks the vicar round for this after church. Her subsequent history was tragic. I attribute Bennett's loathing of many politicians to his affection for his parents innocence.
I rather liked this in yesterday's paper about Roland Barthes.......
Mythologies is often an angry book, and what angered Barthes more than anything was common-sense, which he identified as the philosophy of the bourgeoisie, a mode of thought that systematically pretends that complex things are simple, that puzzling things are obvious, that local things are universal - in short that cultural fantasies shaped by all the dirty contingencies of power and money and history are in fact just the natural order of the universe. The critics job, in Barthes view, was not to revel in these commonsensical myths but to expose them as fraudulent. The critic had to side with history, not with culture. And history, Barthes insisted, 'is not a good bourgeois'.
Bit of a feel of the early 60s there.