November 18th, 2005

breaking bad

Such stuff as dreams are made of

When I was studying philosophy a big concern I had with modern continental philosophy - such as post-structuralism - was that it was vulnerable to political power. For example, it would be blithely asserted that 'There is no reality, there is only a discourse of power'. But, to me, this takes away the key resource of the disadvantaged - that they can defy the powerful by saying 'you may control what is said, but what is true remains, as mute witness that you are wrong'. For example, it may be said that 'women can't do maths' or 'black people are all drug addicts' (or whatever) we challenge that not by privileging a different mode of discourse but by pointing at the evidence to the contrary. The real world is our ally.
Collapse )