a visionary’s report: assumptions about tribal ways need attitude adjustment
You know, when i read stuff like the msn news link below (“Indian boy marries dog to ward off tiger attacks”), i recall how such is characterized by the well-financed media: usually without any empathy much less comparisons to “strange” things in *our own* cultures. And such gets me to think of smug readers being invited to *laughing at* those “backwards” tribal peoples, in the most snide of ways. And i think of such as being just more propaganda (aka thought management) that serves to keep those fellow human beings being “reported on” in some kind of negative, or at least consistently discrediting light, in order to do something that such “light-hearted” stories aren’t telling us.
Maybe you think i’m “un-necessarily” challenging you? Maybe you think it’s just a light-hearted poke of fun at those East Indians? Think again, i say. It’s just those subtle stories that help do the work of euro-centric globalism. Where anyone else’s way of doing things is to be categorically discredited, while Western ways of doing things are to become “Better” (i.e. “Modern” and “Advanced”).
You think I’m being “too sensitive”?
That last part of the text was the clincher, for me. It openly exposed the otherwise cammoflauged value system. The value system, that is, that’s being pushed by Western scientist-types (i.e. social scientists on a new beach-head, exporting so-called “Western Democracy”). So-called “literacy”. The so-called excellence of “literacy” versus the alleged categorical backwardness of “illiteracy”. Think about that one.
One’s legit, the other is not. One is “objective” and so on, the other is merely superstitious, and thus backwards and out-dated. A “bad” thing for smug Westerners “just doing their jobs”.
Now what if we looked at these differences as merely differences, and didn’t attach and/or impose all kinds of hierarchical war-like hype on them, eh? i mean, the practitioners of such beliefs ARE making themselves out to be sitting atop high horses, ain’t they? While they send their allegedly “More Advanced” system to the “poor” Indians. Well, is it not so?
And look at how these Friendly Professionals(tm) sermonize their deeply domesticated readership in a way that kind of facilitates the continuing smooth deployment of Western Ways of Doing Things’ Righteousness. Well, is it not so??
After all, aren’t they all going over to India with major smug attitudes? There’s certainly not very much critical thinking. Oh, maybe they’ve read a little Chomsky and are questioning. But how deeply? Aren’t they seeing themselves as “Helping” “The Poor [Stupid] Indians”?
Maybe it’s not so openly hostile, but if you think about it a little, you can see that just under the surface, i think.
Think about that one, will you? i’ve heard my take on this over and over again in the writings of anti-colonial voices. So it’s not “just” me.
And Americans think, “Oh, but that was Then, we’re not doing colonialism anymore. Now it’s merely ‘development’!” And they’re figuring that this is not colonialism when they make these smug assumptions and then export them! A little Newspeak sprinkled in, and oh, suddenly, there’s NO colonialism! Uh-huh, riiiight….
Maybe you don’t get it. Well, then please take a look at “Just Leave Us Alone!” by a certain Papuan tribesman. (Scroogle it!) It’s a pretty effective counter to the type of drivel so many seem to be uncritically swallowing these daze.
If you’ve already read it, maybe it’s time to re-read it..and make some copies to give to your idealistic friends who are expecting to go overseas and “help” others.
“Indian boy marries dog to ward off tiger attacks
Dad: ‘It will overcome any curse that might fall on the child as well on