plume now scratches the screen at

{Thursday, April 08, 2004}

thanks to Steven Vincent for pointing out this blog: Baghdad Burning.

as we continue freeing the Iraqis to death, I can only repeat what Sam Weber said in his class on the uncanny today:: "To expect the other to be just like us is a sure recipe for the uncanny, i.e. for the other turning to us a face that will be completely unfamiliar."

that is to say, our notion of society is not the only one. but we ( w e ) knew that already.

our notion of the human is not the only one. This example comes to me in reference to a photograph featured in New York Times a few days ago, as well as in other papers: of an army of Iraqi women veiled from head to toe. Uncanny? because we are faced with humans that refuse to show their face. We associate the hidden face with the face of a criminal that has something to hide. We demand openness and nakedness. But why not associate such concealment with ... modesty? Or with truth? In Boetius, for instance, truth is represented as a woman, entirely veiled. The philosopher ponders over the necessity of that veil & and on the fact that, stripped of it, she, the truth, could be neither perceived nor understood.

bush, kerry, same sham. I ask, why do we ( t h e y ? ) insist on approaching ( other countries / others ) from the position of knowing? Why the stubborn separation into good and evil? Why the belief that ( o u r ) weapons of precision are good merely because they aim well?

Chris Marker in his film "Le fond de l'air est rouge" (The grin without a cat) uses some Vietnam footage in which an American pilot comments with relish on his "great shots" and on how he "loves to blast 'em."

so, the underbrush tells us, here it's all different: we are not fighting an enemy. Iraq, it's all friendly fire.

and so on...

our obligation is to think.

plumed @ 12:16 AM | 0 comments



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