The move from a structuralist account in which capital is understood to structure social relations in relatively homologous ways to a view of hegemony in which power relations are subject to repetition, convergence, and rearticulation brought the question of temporality into the thinking of structure, and marked a shift from a form of Althusserian theory that takes structural totalities as theoretical objects to one in which the insights into the contingent possibility of structure inaugurate a renewed conception of hegemony as bound up with the contingent sites and strategies of the rearticulation of power.
- from Charles Hope’s email signature… I think I’ll just use this in everyday conversations. Should make me even more popular.
This is what I want for Christmas… if I can wait that long!
Yes, I took the sci-fi quiz. Yes, I am a geek. Live with it. Here are my results.
You scored as Serenity (Firefly). You like to live your own way and don’t enjoy when anyone but a friend tries to tell you should do different. Now if only the Reavers would quit trying to skin you.
As a public service to all those who feel the same way about the looming "unimaginative, consumerist-oriented and entirely arbitrary, manipulative and shallow interpretation of romance day", here is a site that might provide just what you need to get through it. You have a week to select the right message…
Yes, it’s that special time of year when chocolate manufacturers and greetings card companies encourage you to demonstrate the extent of your fondness in cold, hard, cash (or the satin-covered equivalent) on February 14th.
Or as a friend once said: Valentine’s Day is to love as tap water is to tequila.
Forewarned, forearmed. Good luck.
In a comment on my previous post Lloyd suspected me of dewy-eyed romanticism based on my choice of films. I shuddered and then thought about why I like those films. I realised that each film reminds me of things that I want to be reminded about.
I like The Third Man’s film noir gloom because it reminds me of the starkness of moral dilemmas. It condemns utilitarianism, with its disregard for the sanctity of human life, which can be treated as one side of an equation, with one’s well-being or other ‘good’ being the other. A sick child or a wounded soldier dying of adulterated penicillin drives the point home uncompromisingly. The images of post-war Vienna, with its hushed up life, helplessness, seedy and desperate decadence feel familiar. Apart from the decadence.
I like Casablanca for showing how fighting for a Greater Cause leaves few choices to the individual. I value the nuances with which the characters and their situations are portrayed – the old German waiter in Rick’s bar who helps others, the young Bulgarian wife willing to sell her body save herself and her husband, the rousing rendition of La Marseillaise that moves even Yvonne, Rick’s ‘girlfriend’ and an easy companion to German officers frequenting his bar. The film’s insistence on sacrificing personal desires to do the Right Thing is harsh. The soppy romantic bits a la "Here’s looking at you, kid!" etc, well done as they may be, leave me fairly cold as they are the stuff of many movies. It is what happens in the end that’s makes this film memorable.
Some Like It Hot is just damn funny (and the first film I have ever seen in English, before I could actually speak any, when I was 13). Great story, brilliant acting and perfect comic timing – just like the rakish and fast-paced Restoration comedies. Romantic in a farcical sort of way, I guess, humour being the main reminder here.
Finally, the ultimate romantic story of Romeo & Juliet reminds me of the futility of youth and the aforementioned dewy-eyed romanticism. And I simply adore the poetry, the language, the allusions – in short – Shakespeare’s genius shown in beautiful colours, enacted by beautiful people. My favourite bits are Act I. Scene V. where Romeo and Juliet meet for the first time (the history’s best chat-up lines) and Mercutio’s rant attacking the Queen Mab in in Act I, Scene IV. Glorious.