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JSIS 202 Week 3 Notes

by: Rachel Pollard

JSIS 202 Week 3 Notes JSIS 202

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Rachel Pollard

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Here are the notes from the lectures this week.
Cultural Interactions in an Interdependent World
Professor James Wellman
Class Notes
International Studies
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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by Rachel Pollard on Friday April 15, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to JSIS 202 at University of Washington taught by Professor James Wellman in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 42 views. For similar materials see Cultural Interactions in an Interdependent World in Art at University of Washington.


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Date Created: 04/15/16
Genealogies of the Secular Self Monday, April 11, 2016 11:28 AM • How religion uses violence to order society • Escaping the mimetic • Nova effect Mimetic Desire • Rene Girard: o "As we know, mimetic desire always ends in enslavement, failure, and shame." • Children learn through mimetic desire • Our desires really come from others • We have very few natural desires The Problem of Mimetic Desire • At a certain level, it is humiliating. It exposes the fact th at most of what we desire is the desires of someone else. • Rene Girard: o Mimetic desire is humiliating, once we realize we are doing it, we don't really desire that which we desire, we are only imitating. o Intellectual conversion, most everything we do is a f unction of mimetic desire - nothing is our own- we are our social interactions. Mimetic Desire and Mirror Neutrons • "Neurophysiologists have discovered an interest class of neurons, the so -called 'mirror neurons', which fire both when an individual is perf orming a particular movement, and when she is observing the same movement in another person." • Is it hard to take on a new habit? o It takes 21 days to form a new habit Mimetic Desire and Rivalry • Rene Girard: o "One is always moving towards more symmetry, and thus always towards more conflict, for symmetry cannot but produce doubles, as I call them at this moment of intense rivalry." • As we get closer and closer to one another, there tends to tension and conflict. • Those you are closet to tend to fight the most. • Withdrawing projection o What you want is projected onto the other person, and if they don't give it then you become angry. o Use non-violent communication (a much better way to communicate rather than rivalry) Violence as Sacramental • A mimetic desire leads to rivalries and competitions • "Violence becomes a sacrament by which one wins glory for oneself, ones family, and the state." • Sacrifice a way to protect a community from its violence. Mimetic Desire Creates Culture • Great stories tell the truth but we as humans. • The beauty of human beings it through mimetic desire. Commandments Sustain Culture by Stopping effects of Mimetic Desire • Ten Commandments o "You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall give not give false testimony against your neighbor." o Tenth commandment: "Prohibits desiring anything that belongs to your neighbor." o At their heart stopping mimetic rivalry. o As Freud said: • "We create rules against the very thing we desire." Fear of Mimetic Crisis • Rwanda" Hutu vs. Tutsi - a million Tutsi killed n 100 day period - 1994 • "As antagonism and violence erupt, they spread in the same mimetic way, by cumulative resentment and vengeance, producing a state of Hobbesian radical resentment of all against all." • Through the process of mimetic desire, we scapegoat those who are slightly more vulnerable than us. Mimesis and the Sources of Violence • Violence is contagious, product of imitation o "Rivalry does not arise because of the fortuitous convergence of two desires on a single object…Rather, the subject desires the object because the rival desires it." Sacrifice and the Sources of Violence • Rene Girard: o "Real or symbolic, sacrifice is primarily a collective action of the entire community, which purifies itself of its own disorder through the unanimous immolation of a victim, but this can happen only at the paroxysm of the ritual crisis." • It solves the intensity of mimetic desire. Sacrificial • Sacrifice protects the community from its own violence, sacrifice is designed to suppress internal conflict. • Sacrificial victim is chosen from someone who the group has no fear of reprisal ,their death entails no necessary act of ven geance. Sacrifice and the Scapegoat • Religion is far from useless, it humanizes violence, gives order to the murder, justifies and rationalizes the killing of the scapegoat. • The victim is divinized. Religion, State and Violence • Aztec, depended on trib utes religious system depended on blood of human beings to insure the rise of day. • Religion shelters use from violence A Secular Age: What is the present age about? • Belief in God no longer axiomatic; search for alternatives? • Kant: power as rational agen ts who make the laws by which we live • Our power is autonomous not heteronomous (external) • De-centering of humanity: Copernicus, Darwin, Freud • Unbelief has achieved a certain hegemony - especially in "intellectual circles" • Transcedent vs. immanent order in natures • What is human flourishing? • Rise of humanism Sources of Neo-Liberal Economics Wednesday, April 13, 2016 11:29 AM A Secular and Disenchanted Age • Transcedent vs. immanent order in nature o Transcendent forces reinforce all things together • It was really a part of indigenous cultures o Order from within vs. order from without • What is human flourishing? From God vs. internal markers of the authentically fulfilled life - o Tikkun, to heal the world o We do it vs. we partner with divine to do it • Rise of humanism-we are on our own, to fulfill or fail • Naiveté is not available to believer or unbeliever • Is secularization a binding force or is this a form of being unbound? A new Social Imaginary • Genealogy of the modern individual: o Pre-modern self, deeply enmeshed/embedded in society, in tribal relations - family, group, nation, religion o Your tribe is your identity, their religion is your religion o Lack of differentiation • Buffered identities, impervious to enchanted cosmos -demand for a differentiated self • Post-modern self: Dis -embedding from the social sacred order - to a new social order: o From Christian order of the Good Samaritan to a justice founded on immanent demand for solidarity. equality, and non -domination New Humanistic Social Order • Distancing from hierarchy • Evolution of Human Consciousness: o Stages of humanity, from hunter gatherers to agriculturalists, culminating in contemporary commercial societies, states, directing and ordering communities - freedom to be ME. • Creation of new form of culture of authenticity - expressive individualism, "do their own thing." o Originates in the Romantic period, 18th/19th century. From Mono World to Deism, to Humanism • Mono world, destiny is set from beginning • Deism: o A God that orders the universe, sets up a model and let's the game go • Humanism: o Ethic of freedom, demand for individual choice and authenticity • Benefits of buffered self: no longer open to world of spirits, a self that is self -determining • Pride in overcoming old enchantments o Look back on superstitions of the past • A movement to, our desires are inherently ordered in such a way that we can build a new economy based on it. ( as Smith and Hume would say) Negative Side to this Freedom? • Traps us in secular time - immanent order - blinds us to what might be beyond • Malaise of the disenchanted world: o Is this all there is? Caught in world of instrumental rationality - everything exists Nova Effect • Between orthodoxy and unbelief - "nova effect" multiplication of forms of spirituality o Lust for meaning o Some go back to Orthodoxy, to materialist, atheism, even to authoritarianism o Cross-pressures, too difficult to negotiate multiplicity of options, too much freedom o Others, self-create, new spirituality, inclusive and creative (vs. narrow an d violent- fundamentalism) Anis Mojgani • Baha'i faith • Transpiritual language Adam Smith - Enlightenment and its Consequences • Unlikely hero of capitalism • Pre-industrial revolution; led, with David Hume, the Scottish Enlightenment; never uttered, Laissez-faire, free enterprise, entrepreneur or capitalism. • Produced two books (burned all other manuscripts) o The Theory of Moral Sentiments o An Inquiry in to the Nature and Cases of the Wealth of Nations • The foundation of his thinking was understanding the moral sense of human nature • Secularism doesn't mean that you don't have a moral foundation • He referred to competition as "an invisible hand", which kept the economy stable and orderly. Original Thinking • Private gain could lead to general welfare • What appears to look like original sin is self -interest that can be channeled into productivity • Move away from mercantilism (protectionism, subsidies, reducing imports, fearful nationalism) • Humans have an innate "moral sense" extended further by reason, self -interest that creates common good • Epistemology o Empirical reasoning, using evidence to seek truth, progress • Importance of civil and religious liberty David Hume • Humans must, can and will discover, construct, and dominate a new world Learnings • A just society is held together by the rule of law, this does not mean that humans act for the good of all, but their private desires can benefit all. o Wealth of nation derives from two factors: • Truck, barter, and exchange one thing for another • Desire of bettering our condition, from the womb, never leave us • The moral sentiment: inherent to the human being, to the human condition, your desire to better yourself in intrinsic • Government must: o Protect freedom of exchange o Insure rights of ownership • Requirements of an Monarch: o National defense o Domestic rule of law o Public works • Money is the general stock of society making circulation more efficient; individuals, free to pursue Shadows of Invention and Production • Division of labor o Making a pin o Dehumanization of laborers, doing same thing over and over again Smith Liberalizing Agenda • Recommended universal education, workers' rights, public health… A Secular Revolution • Smith, believer in God • Humans could be trusted, not only that ,but this sen timent of self-interest to improve ones life for oneself, when trusted, and given the conditions to thrive, would be to the benefit of all, if the government protected rights, health, infrastructure, education and the environment…Something beautiful could happen…Utopian vision. Construction of Democratic Liberalism Friday, April 15, 2016 11:28 AM Democracy • The common people rule • Mostly shackled under monarchy, oligarchy and tyranny • Individual rights and self-determination, rare and difficult to keep • England's Glorious Revolution of 1688 o Bill of Rights, placing limits on kingly authority Slow Process of Democracy • 1900 - 15 democracies, most excluded women • 1930 - less than 30, none outside Western Europe • In 2014: Freedom House: o Fully free: 88 countries, 40% world's population o Partly free: 59 countries, 25% globes population o Not free: 48 countries, 35% of globe's population Britain, US Constitutional Government • Major political miracles o Individual rights o Freedom of the press o Freedom to assemble o Freedom of religion o Legal protection of self, and property o Representative Government Influenced by Scotch/French Enlightenment, Classical Greek and Roman Thinkers • Alexander Hamilton o Strong Central government o Large military o Federally driven industrial economy o Active foreign policy • Thomas Jefferson o Weak government o Local militias o Nation of yeoman farmers o No entangling alliances John Locke, 1689, Two Treatises on Government, published anonymously • First Treatise o Attack on patriarchies - Adam has authority over a ll things - Locke: "Not over human beings." o Divine Right of Kings - no evidence from Bible that Adam, as King, should and could rule over all. • Second Treatise o All men are created equal in the state of nature by God. o State of nature, each individual needs n o permission to act and be. o Rise of property and civilization, only legitimate governments are by the consent of the people. America, US Foreign Policy and Global Politics • Seven Year's War (1754-1763), fist World War - known in America as the French and Indian War • Following this war, England cracks down on American colonies, directly leads to rise of independence movement - mostly burdening taxes. Boston Massacre (1770), Rise of American Independence • Locke's Second Treatise on Civil Government o Notion of unalienable rights • Right to private property • Rule of law, without which no real freedom • Limited constitutional government • Natural law (system of jurisprudence) - no arbitrary power over people • Freedom of speech Alexander Hamilton • Out of wedlock birth • Rags to riches tale - be something before you are something • Congress must take responsibility, in war, peace, trade, finance, foreign affairs and the military - "blend the advantages of a monarchy and republic in our constitution." • He was for a strong state Hamilton and the Constitution • Defending the Constitution and its monarchial cast. o With John Jay and James Madison, 85 essays published, The Federalist Papers (most important writings on political theory ever written) o Power of taxation; structure of new Government; judiciary, independence of each branch Anti-Federalist • Patrick Henry of Virginia - fight against the tyranny of the federal government o James Madison answered with the Bill of Rights to the first US Congress in 1789. o Steering the Republic through the reefs of either tyranny or anarchy o Hamilton: • Ultimate test for the Constitution, to survive bad leaders - through voluntary consent of the people o Hamilton's 1791, Subjec t of Manufactures, create tariffs and subsidies to favor domestic products (seemingly anti Adam Smith)


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