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Wednesday, 3 March 2004

More navel gazing

I tend to see the world as a series of binary oppositions. I just read an article about this for my english class by Hélène Cixous (a french feminist) called "Sorties: Out and Out: Attacks / Ways Out / Forrays." In this article, she documents the essentially masculinist (phalocentric) nature of binary oppositions. She makes a claim that inherent in these oppositions are value judgements. Things binarily opposed are not equal. One is better than the other. Moreover, it is how some chooose to define themselves, but labelling on thing as "me" and another thing as "not me", opposing them, and then comparing them to rate how we are doing in relation to everything else.

I do this and it has not served me well. For starters, it means that there is always a hierarchy and thus I can never equally relate to anyone or anything I put myself in binary opposition to. Furthermore, it creates false dichotomies. There are a lot of grey areas in life. Real life is not "do X or be a loser." this has been harming my worldview and my relationships.

I think it might relate to my trying to supress mourning and not feel sad, something that has also not served me well. I wanted to bravely soldier on and put the past behind me and not look back. It's like I formed my self image from outdated ideals of maleness and manhood. How did I get such a masculinist viewpoint? It's bizarre. Reading my blogposts from last winter is bizarre. I know I must have been in turmoil, but I barely acknowledged it.

So I'm confused about how I have formed my concept of self, but, while I cannot change the past, I can effect the future. I'm not going to say "these things must go now (or i'll be a loser)," since this would just put me in another binary opposition, but I can look at how I am reacting to things as I react to them and see if I am falling into a pattern that might not serve me well. I will feminize myself. But don't expect skirts or lipstick. I have boundaries.

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