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❱❱ Reading Colonialism in “Parasite”

This is not a charge against any attempt to relate Parasite to other contexts. Bong’s social critique concerns the international conditions of globalized capitalism, but particular to Korea’s neoliberal and neocolonial present. Examining the film as a story of class in the neocolony shifts it from a decontextualized tale of rich and poor to one of compradors and the colonized. This lens takes Parasite from an allegory of “class conflict” to one of imperialism, and illuminates the film’s recurring motifs of English, militarization and appropriated Indigenous material culture.

Ju-Hyun Park's scene by scene breakdown of the explicit role American colonialism plays in Parasite's tale of inequality…

❱❱ Ring and Nest helped normalize American surveillance and turned us into a nation of voyeurs

Catherine, a 58-year-old Florida snowbird who uses Blink cameras to watch her home in Minnesota and who requested to use only her first name, said the cameras have become so easy to turn on that many people don’t really think about what’s at stake. Parents who installed cameras in kids’ rooms, she said, might end up depriving them of the privacy they need to grow into independent adults.
“We’re all getting too paranoid. Everybody thinks they’re going to be the next victim. And it’s set into us this mentality that we have to watch everything and everybody,” she said. “They think, ‘If I put all these cameras up, I’ll be safe.’ Safe from what? … It’s only making them more afraid.”

Speaking of consumer culture developing, then praying upon, a stunted maturity…

❱❱ What It Takes to Grow Up, What It Means to Have Grown

Perhaps the most difficult beauty and the hardest-won glory of true adulthood is the refusal, vehement and counter-cultural and proud, to relinquish our inner magnolias as we grow older, declining to sacrifice them at the altar-register of a culture that continually robs us of our self-worth and tries to sell it back to us at the price of the latest product.

Maria Popova collects a bit of wisdom about growing up and it's relationship to consumer culture…

❱❱ Why You Can't Trust Yourself

  1. You are biased and selfish without realizing it
  2. You don’t have a clue about what makes you happy (or miserable)
  3. You are easily manipulated into making bad decisions
  4. You generally only use logic and reason to support your preexisting beliefs
  5. Your emotions change your perceptions way more than you realize
  6. Your memory sucks
  7. ‘You’ aren’t who you think you are
  8. Your physical experience of the world isn’t even that real

Thorough breakdown from Mark Manson…

❱❱ Simple pleasure

Usually in the Buddhist tradition, you sit, and then you stand up and do slow walking in the meditation hall, and then you sit again. We don’t do that here. Instead, we do outdoor walking. That practice is helpful because you can apply it in your daily life. You walk normally—not too slowly—so you don’t look like you’re practicing and people see you as normal. And then when you go home, when you’re going from the parking lot to your office, you can enjoy walking.

The basic practice is how to enjoy—how to enjoy walking and sitting and eating and showering. It’s possible to enjoy every one, but our society is organized in such a way that we don’t have time to enjoy. We have to do everything too quickly.

Thich Nhat Hanh answers questions about  sitting, walking, mental illness, consuming entertainment, and modeling joy…

❱❱ It is solved by walking

Antonia Malchik for High Country News…

Walking a thousand miles a year hasn’t given me a tidy list for how to live a good and effective life that I could stick up on the refrigerator. But it’s kept the promise contained in the Latin phrase solvitur ambulando, or “it is solved by walking.” Originally used to describe a premise that is explored through practical experiment, the phrase has been used by thinkers, writers and travelers throughout millennia of written history, people who believed — because they walked and found it to be true — that walking was an answer to the stuck thought, the sorrowing heart, the moral dilemma. It is the realization that freedom of the mind is intertwined with freedom of movement.

Throughout Elementary and Middle School I was a "walker". In High School I'd occasionally miss the bus - It was a 2½ mile walk home.

When I left St. Louis, I sold my car. Most days I walked to and from work. Enduring Northeast winters when gusts of below-zero-wind would harden the contacts in my eyes. Through humid summers where I'd arrive home soaked with sweat.

In San Francisco I rocked a granny cart to help when trudging large piles of laundry to the laundromat. For a couple of months I lived at one end of Sutter Street (near the bus lot) and worked at the other (at Market). Walking the length of that street at the end of the day is the best job perk I've ever had. When going back to visit, I'll make time to walk it again. It's up there with SFMOMA and a burrito on my priority list.

In Santa Fe, pedestrians have the right away. Though no one seemed to know it. Or they did and were furious about it. Even city buses will come at you aggressively while you're in a cross walk (with a stop sign). Still…It's hard to beat a snowy walk through little adobe neighborhoods.

I bought a bike a year or so after moving to Portland. I can count on two hands the number of times I've ridden it.

I'd much rather walk…


How to Walk by Thich Nhat Hanh & Jason DeAntonis

❱❱ The Ben Franklin effect

The Ben Franklin effect is a proposed psychological phenomenon: a person who has already performed a favor for another is more likely to do another favor for the other than if they had received a favor from that person. An explanation for this is cognitive dissonance. People reason that they help others because they like them, even if they do not, because their minds struggle to maintain logical consistency between their actions and perceptions.
This perception of Franklin has been cited as an example within cognitive dissonance theory, which says that people change their attitudes or behavior to resolve tensions, or "dissonance", between their thoughts, attitudes, and actions. In the case of the Ben Franklin effect, the dissonance is between the subject's negative attitudes to the other person and the knowledge that they did that person a favor.One science blogger accounts for the phenomenon in the following way: "Current self-perception theory tells us that our brains behave like an outside observer, continually watching what we do and then contriving explanations for those actions, which subsequently influence our beliefs about ourselves....Our observing brain doesn't like it when our actions don't match the beliefs we have about ourselves, a situation commonly referred to as cognitive dissonance. So, whenever your behavior is in conflict with your beliefs (for example if you do a favor for someone you may not like very much or vice versa, when you do something bad to someone you are supposed to care about), this conflict immediately sets off alarm bells in your brain. The brain has a clever response – it goes about changing how you feel in order to reduce the conflict and turn off the alarms."

More @ Wikipedia…

❱❱ Portraits of “Most Beautiful Chickens on the Planet”

If you were asked to name the most beautiful species of bird in the world, it’s unlikely that “chicken” would be your first answer. However, Italian photographers Moreno Monti and Matteo Tranchellini believe chickens are underrated. The two began a portrait project called Chic!ken to show the world just how beautiful these humble farm birds really are. Today, with over 200 stunning portraits showcasing 100 different types of chickens, the pair decided to combine the collection into a hardback photobook.

More @ My Modern Met…