Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Networks and Ancient Greece Final

I think I wanna talk about some of the readings and some aspects of ancient and especially hellenistic greece w/r/t one another.  I'll focus on Fassin, Tsing, and (maybe) Ranciere.

I'm interested in Tsing's history of generalization and the ways her project nuances, interacts w/, subverts, self-deprecatingly relies upon, and (sometimes) aggrandizes generalizations and universals.

I'm intereseted in Tsing's history of generalization and I'm interested in hellenistic greece as a kinda "pre-universal" culture, to an extent- how cultural syncretism circumvented (or didn't) many of the major "global-local", "universal-particular" tensions/frictions described in Tsing.  less uncomfortable movement?  But how do structures of power and hierarchy act w/o established hegemonies//valued "universals"? (because they certainly were there)
I'm interested in how these thinkers, esp. Ranciere (and Fassin?), borrow from the Greeks in their attempts to deal w/ these sorts of problems, and how/if the potential of cultural "othering" could be minimized by different conceptions of "the universal" - and how humanitarianism depends on this "othering".  I'm interested in potentialities of progressive discourse: martyrdom (pity, humanitarianism) vs. friendship (politics)- this would also tie in to my reading of Citizen Kane, but may be entering a whole other bag of biscuits (as if biscuit bags were discontinuous!) (but perhaps this later non-existent bag would be more focused/topical)

I'm interested in reading Plato's Phaedrus as a syncretic document that is also a founding document for "universal thought" - but i feel like theres some scholarship on this that i don't know about and i feel that looking into it would be outside the scope of this project.  But I kinda want to think through Arendt's reading of Kant as able to offer a strange sort of remedy for this contradiction, and i want to think about the importance of these 3 figures for Ranciere.  That would almost certainly be outside of the scope of the project.
I think i'm about to read a piece by Ranciere about plato and politics soon which could play into this.

 I'm interested in Tsing's species-classification chapter, although i haven't read it yet.  Particulars of a species abstracted on the basis of their species-being - generalization on a smaller scale.  I'm interested on "scales" of universalization.  How do different "scales" of generalization alter its uses/effects? This may actually be a more focused topic.  I could talk about Tsing and Parks.  So far i've proposed at least 3 topics.  I'll probably write about this or Fassin/Kane/humanitarianism (poss too easy?) and leave the rest for kicks/virtuality.  This is the last thing I wrote, chronologically.

I'm also interested in how Tsing's unity of form & content.  I kinda want to play w/ language and form in similar ways and write this as if it's a fiction piece - realistic fiction which uses accurate and specific quotes- but not in the form of a paper.  But i'd understand if this is not desirable.

I'm interested in post-colonialism as secular paganism.

That quickly spun out of control.  I will narrow it down and talk to you about it obvs.  But if it doesn't come together, I could also write about free labor and imagined communities in the video game World of Warcraft.  (i played it, like just a little, in early high school, but i think it's free for a month - torrent ads tell me -, and i think i'd be okay w/ turning procrastination into "research")

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