So I've been writing about the state of things and change and such for a bit now. And, usually, my posts and essays inspire rage of some sort or another. At first, I was taken aback, surprised by the the casual loathing of others (not here; here there's been passion but no loathing, thank you very much). But now I'd like to take a moment to reflect on it.
When I write — when I speak — it is at once emphatic and uncertain. I speak from a position but with the full understanding that positions are not fixed, that conditions change, minds change, feelings change. But I still feel the way I feel and so I write on.
But, usually, I write essays, not treatises. And I do this not out of indecision, not because I am somehow lame or uncommitted, but because this is the change I'd like to foment: I want the whole world to be less dogmatic, to embrace ambiguity and multivalence, to love multiplicity and sing in dissonant chorus, to embrace complexity and all that it engenders.
So of course I run into problems: the very terms of political exchange are premised on opposition. And I'm trying to speak outside of opposition, in the language of play because play, methinks, will set us free.
Part of the issue is that we're all beginning from different places, from different sets of assumptions. Me, I'm not sure what politics is, what people means, what capital denotes. Which is to say, I begin from a place of rampant stupidity — my own rampant stupidity, that is. But ingrained in this is the belief that we should all begin from such a place — a place that privileges the question over the answer, a place that is willing to put it ALL back together into odd, beautiful shapes that resonate.
And then there is the nature of this subject matter. It is run through with pathos, with sentiment, which tends to eclipse discussion. People find themselves all worked up — which always surprises me.
And then there is the nature of discussion. What happens when the terms of exchange are premised on oppositional argument and I operate in a discourse with very different rules? My favorite mode of exchange is the conversation punctuated by the monologue: You hold forth, I ask some questions, lend some refinements; then I hold forth while you question and lend some refinements. This way we enact a multiplicity of perspectives co-existing — which is precisely the change I'd like to enact!
Solidarity in multiplicity!