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Offline kimmy

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #15 on: November 13, 2018, 02:35:14 am »
They made it into a tribal code, ie. protect our people, rather than a morality based on principle of caring for others.

Exactly so, Michael.  This has been underway for decades, probably as a reaction to liberalism and pluralism and religion's loss of stature in general.  Many have left the church altogether, but many of those that remain have sought a brand of faith that pushes back against the things they feel threatened by.

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Offline TimG

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #16 on: November 13, 2018, 02:51:25 am »
Right, but they slid right in their and 'rationalized morality', as Cybercobra explains it.  In this case they redesigned Christianity to be... whatever it is now, I guess.  They made it into a tribal code, ie. protect our people, rather than a morality based on principle of caring for others.
Your tribal colours are showing where you vilify the "outsider" and presume nefarious/selfish motives while denying the degree to which your own morality is really driven by what if good for you rather than 'caring for others'.

Morality always has been and alway will be a manifestation of tribalism because humans need to belong to a tribe to survive and if resources are scarce the rational "moral" choice will always reserve those resources for one's own tribe. Sometimes morality is dressed up with old books and belief in the divine. Other times it is dressed up with complex philosophical musings but in the end it is the same.

Offline kimmy

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #17 on: November 13, 2018, 03:29:08 am »

Nevertheless, the poisons of post-structuralism have now spread throughout academe and have done enormous damage to basic scholarly standards and disastrously undermined belief even in the possibility of knowledge. I suspect history will not be kind to the leading professors who appear to have put loyalty to friends and colleagues above defending scholarly values during a chaotic era of overt vandalism that has deprived several generations of students of a profound education in the humanities. The steady decline in humanities majors is an unmistakable signal that this once noble field has become a wasteland..


https://quillette.com/2018/11/10/camille-paglia-its-time-for-a-new-map-of-the-gender-world/


I have only made it part-way through the interview, and am not really qualified to comment because my own knowledge of philosophy is about as deep as my knowledge of brain surgery.  I haven't done much in the way of fancy book larnin' myself.

But I do have to say that post-modernism seems to be a concept that I arrived at on my own and never had a name for previously.  A while back in another thread I was talking about the idea that objective news coverage doesn't (and can't) exist because a complete factual description of reality is too much to fit into a broadcast, or a newspaper, or a website.  Those things can show you a portion of reality, but the portion they show is somebody's idea of what is most important and disregards everything else. You get a brief look at some politics items, some local traffic news, some local weather, a few world events, some stock market news, some sports items, and a human interest story.  That's not everything that happened, that's some editor's idea of what they think their viewers will find most useful.  Trying to describe reality is unavoidably a situation like the story about the three blind men trying to describe an elephant by touch.

And that problem isn't limited to a news show trying to explain the world in 30 minutes.  That problem is our selves trying to understand a universe that we can barely perceive at all. Our attempt to understand our world or anything in it is like the three blind men trying to describe an elephant.  We see only a tiny portion of our world. We see what's happening on the street we're walking down, but we don't see what's happening the next street over. We read one news source but disregard another.  We can only see a tiny piece of the world, and which tiny piece we choose to look at is a result of the choices we make.

And even our perception of the piece we choose to look at is edited by our own biases.  Two people can look at the exact same news story and come to different conclusions about its significance because our biases inform us as to which facts are most important.  Our brain itself isn't a perfect rational instrument.  Our perception and our choices at any given time can be influenced by anything from our the amount of sleep we've had and our blood sugar level and how much we've had to drink, to some terrible experience you had back in high school that your current situation reminds you of.

There is an objective reality, but all of us are looking at it through a distorted lens that we have constructed ourselves.  You experience reality through your own set of filters and biases and even biological differences that make your experience different from the person next to you.  The viewer's own lens is an unavoidable part of what they're seeing. In a sense, we ourselves create the way we experience things.  I think that's an unavoidable conclusion.  And if my understanding of the term is correct, that's the basic idea behind post-modernism.


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Offline MH

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #18 on: November 13, 2018, 07:16:29 am »
Your tribal colours are showing where you vilify the "outsider" and presume nefarious/selfish motives while denying the degree to which your own morality is really driven by what if good for you rather than 'caring for others'.

I'm as tribal as the next guy but 'motives' are a short-term and deliberate element of a planned change.  This change happened naturally over time.  And I didn't say anything about my own morality, so I'm not sure where this comes from.

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Morality always has been and alway will be a manifestation of tribalism because humans need to belong to a tribe to survive and if resources are scarce the rational "moral" choice will always reserve those resources for one's own tribe. Sometimes morality is dressed up with old books and belief in the divine. Other times it is dressed up with complex philosophical musings but in the end it is the same.

But Christianity was based on a principle of empathy, so this was supposed to be different.  It ebbs and flows but this is an ebb.

Offline cybercoma

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #19 on: November 13, 2018, 08:26:01 am »
Exactly so, Michael.  This has been underway for decades, probably as a reaction to liberalism and pluralism
 -k
It's actually a form of liberalism in and of itself. Liberalism in this case being individual liberty and freedom to choose and define their religious community for themselves. Liberalism here being that those who choose to be "saved" will voluntarily join their religious communities and will be not only welcomed, but supported if they follow the tenets of the faith. It's paradoxical because individual liberty is recognized as choosing to be a sinner or saved. Once saved, individual liberty becomes about the liberty of the community as whole--us versus the mass of sinners. So it's absolutely a reaction to pluralism because pluralism is a threat to the a Christian society with homogeneous beliefs and values, ie, the CORRECT values and beliefs, according to them. Anything else is the road to damnation.

This idea that they put the community over themselves (but only their Christian community) is why paradoxically some of the most intolerant religious zealots will actually have people from very different backgrounds in their congregation, so long as they prostrate themselves to the faith. Their intolerance is reserved for those who "choose" not to follow their faith because, as they tell us, there is only one true faith and everything else is heresy.

Offline cybercoma

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #20 on: November 13, 2018, 08:37:35 am »
Morality always has been and alway will be a manifestation of tribalism because humans need to belong to a tribe to survive
Morality is about tribalism because religion is the physical manifestation of social structures. When people get together in a group, they feel certain forces and pressures outside of themselves to act in certain ways. There is no such thing as completely free agency. In pre-modern times, they gave an identity to social forces through religious and spiritual symbolism, rituals, etc. Those social forces are the combination of individual actions, but they lose their place within individual action to become something bigger outside the individuals that then acts back upon them. They begin to influence individual agency, despite being the consequence of an aggregate of individuals acting in patterned ways.

Morality exists because social actions are patterned and those patterns go on to have a life of their own outside individual agency. It's not that we need a tribe to survive. Anywhere people live together, their actions feed into the larger pattern of expectations and normative sanctions against individuals. Morality exists because people act in accordance with the roles and expectations that they have within the group that they exist. Morality would be non-existent in the abstract, hypothetical case of an individual being born in and living in isolation their entire life because morality is always about social action--that is action that takes place within the context of a community of people (even as small as an individual family).

Offline cybercoma

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #21 on: November 13, 2018, 08:56:42 am »

I have only made it part-way through the interview, and am not really qualified to comment because my own knowledge of philosophy is about as deep as my knowledge of brain surgery.  I haven't done much in the way of fancy book larnin' myself.

But I do have to say that post-modernism seems to be a concept that I arrived at on my own and never had a name for previously.  A while back in another thread I was talking about the idea that objective news coverage doesn't (and can't) exist because a complete factual description of reality is too much to fit into a broadcast, or a newspaper, or a website.  Those things can show you a portion of reality, but the portion they show is somebody's idea of what is most important and disregards everything else. You get a brief look at some politics items, some local traffic news, some local weather, a few world events, some stock market news, some sports items, and a human interest story.  That's not everything that happened, that's some editor's idea of what they think their viewers will find most useful.  Trying to describe reality is unavoidably a situation like the story about the three blind men trying to describe an elephant by touch.

And that problem isn't limited to a news show trying to explain the world in 30 minutes.  That problem is our selves trying to understand a universe that we can barely perceive at all. Our attempt to understand our world or anything in it is like the three blind men trying to describe an elephant.  We see only a tiny portion of our world. We see what's happening on the street we're walking down, but we don't see what's happening the next street over. We read one news source but disregard another.  We can only see a tiny piece of the world, and which tiny piece we choose to look at is a result of the choices we make.

And even our perception of the piece we choose to look at is edited by our own biases.  Two people can look at the exact same news story and come to different conclusions about its significance because our biases inform us as to which facts are most important.  Our brain itself isn't a perfect rational instrument.  Our perception and our choices at any given time can be influenced by anything from our the amount of sleep we've had and our blood sugar level and how much we've had to drink, to some terrible experience you had back in high school that your current situation reminds you of.

There is an objective reality, but all of us are looking at it through a distorted lens that we have constructed ourselves.  You experience reality through your own set of filters and biases and even biological differences that make your experience different from the person next to you.  The viewer's own lens is an unavoidable part of what they're seeing. In a sense, we ourselves create the way we experience things.  I think that's an unavoidable conclusion.  And if my understanding of the term is correct, that's the basic idea behind post-modernism.


 -k
**** hell, Kimmy. This is a better understanding of post-modernism than most professors have. Your view on it is exactly what I keep trying to tell my colleagues who seem to think post-modernism means that there is literally "no objective reality." In way, they can say that because we only understand reality through our perception and knowledge/understanding, which are extremely limited. However, it's not a useful shorthand, in my opinion, when people confuse that to mean that there's no such thing as facts or that rationality and reason are moot.

Your description is exactly what the purpose of post-modernism was. Modernism was the idea that only privileged individuals, who got to be objective observers, could define the contexts and situations that other people are in. The problem in the social sciences and humanities is that this was usually reserved for those who could even have a place in academia in the mid-20th century in the first place, ie, wealthy, white men. Black kids couldn't even go to college. Some women worked outside the home, most took on the responsibility of raising children--very few went to college. So what you're left with is a bunch of rich, white dudes talking about society and defining the experience of others. Needless to say, it's from a very specific perspective.

So post-modernism does not completely reject objectivity. What it's supposed to do is make people aware of the subjectivity in their narratives and their research methods. Take interviewing respondents as case in point. Some believed when you interview a respondent, their answers are wholly theirs and objective data. What post-modernism highlights is the fact that the interviewer and interviewee create knowledge together through the interview process. An interview is a social interaction with actions and reactions. The interviewer's very presence changes the interview process. How they word questions, the affect they have on their faces, the emphasis they place on words--these all change how the interviewee responds. Further still, when the researcher drafts up their report, what they choose to emphasize, what theoretical framework informs their interpretation, how they analyze the interview, these are all inputs into the final product. There is no such thing as completely distanced objectivity here.

Now that's not to say that things are entirely and radically subjective either. It's about recognizing subjectivity and understanding its influences and effects, while trying to maintain the description of the experience or social phenomena you're looking to understand or explore. The value of the researcher is the theoretical contexts that they're able to situate these experiences in to tell a broader, more generalizable story. Post-modernism just begs the social sciences and humanities to recognize the element of subjectivity, in contrast to the modernism era where absolute objectivity was believed to be possible.

Offline MH

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #22 on: November 13, 2018, 08:58:41 am »
Morality is about tribalism because religion is the physical manifestation of social structures.

Because ?  Or... "just as" religion is the physical manifestation of social structure. 

'Because' talks about causality and it seems to me morality appears in groups before religion does.

 
Everything else you wrote makes sense to me.  Culture seems to me to mean a set of designs of behaviours and norms, to apply to some group.  National identity is that, too.  But none of them quite fit.

Offline cybercoma

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #23 on: November 13, 2018, 09:05:42 am »
Because ?  Or... "just as" religion is the physical manifestation of social structure. 

'Because' talks about causality and it seems to me morality appears in groups before religion does.

 
Everything else you wrote makes sense to me.  Culture seems to me to mean a set of designs of behaviours and norms, to apply to some group.  National identity is that, too.  But none of them quite fit.
Morality feeds into religion. Religion is the physical representation of morality through rituals and artifacts. Morality is the external force of aggregate social action that influences individual agency.

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #24 on: November 13, 2018, 10:14:32 am »
Thanks Kimmy & Cyber.  I had no idea that I already knew and understood post-modernism until you guys explained it.  :) 

Offline MH

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #25 on: November 13, 2018, 10:34:51 am »
Nietzsche isn't postmodern, though.  ???

Offline SirJohn

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #26 on: November 13, 2018, 03:24:29 pm »
There is an objective reality, but all of us are looking at it through a distorted lens that we have constructed ourselves.  You experience reality through your own set of filters and biases and even biological differences that make your experience different from the person next to you.  The viewer's own lens is an unavoidable part of what they're seeing. In a sense, we ourselves create the way we experience things.  I think that's an unavoidable conclusion.  And if my understanding of the term is correct, that's the basic idea behind post-modernism.

The problem is that when you apply this to education it allows for an enormous variance in what youth are taught, depending on the professor's mindset and which books they choose. Which means you can take History 101 and Fred can take History 101 from a different professor and you'll wind up with entirely different views. Oh, you'll know dates and places and names. But you'll come out thinking Sir John A MacDonald was a brilliant, wonderful visionary and Fred will come out thinking Sir John A was a monster who was responsible for all manner of societal ills. And the way the course is taught will not allow for any different conclusion, depending on which professor you take.

It also allows for people to basically make up their own conclusions based on their own version of reality in most of the rest of the humanities, especially in the 'made up' subjects like gender studies, where there really is no firm academic basis for anything being taught. It's almost all purely subjective.

"When liberals insist that only fascists will defend borders then voters will hire fascists to do the job liberals won't do." David Frum

Offline Queefer Sutherland

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #27 on: November 13, 2018, 04:12:22 pm »
I'm pretty sure that the merger of the Republicans with the evangelicals has little to nothing to do with universities.  Most of those people aren't big on "fancy book learnin'".

The difference between evangelicals and leftwing "postmodernists" & intersectional identity politics types is that one is based on a morality from an old book of fairytales, while the other is based on academic reasoning.  The only problem is that sometimes the reasoning in the latter can be faulty, at least IMO.
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Offline Omni

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #28 on: November 13, 2018, 04:31:35 pm »
The difference between evangelicals and leftwing "postmodernists" & intersectional identity politics types is that one is based on a morality from an old book of fairytales, while the other is based on academic reasoning.  The only problem is that sometimes the reasoning in the latter can be faulty, at least IMO.
Reasoning is better than having a ring in ones nose from religious indoctrination.. Even faulty reasoning can be corrected by further reasoning.

Offline Queefer Sutherland

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Re: Philosophy Culture
« Reply #29 on: November 13, 2018, 04:35:38 pm »
people live together, their actions feed into the larger pattern of expectations and normative sanctions against individuals. Morality exists because people act in accordance with the roles and expectations that they have within the group that they exist. Morality would be non-existent in the abstract, hypothetical case of an individual being born in and living in isolation their entire life because morality is always about social action--that is action that takes place within the context of a community of people (even as small as an individual family).

Morality would still exist if we lived in isolation because treatment of animals and the environment has moral implications.

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Morality exists because social actions are patterned and those patterns go on to have a life of their own outside individual agency. It's not that we need a tribe to survive.

I think we do need a tribe to survive.  Our country is one tribe we need.  Without this tribe we wouldn't care about defending our borders to survive, and foreign tribes (countries) could attack or invade us if we didn't band together to protect ourselves& pooling our resources etc.
I queef, therefore I am.