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The Social Relations of Race

The Social Relations of Race

Antiracism is driven by a need to settle the score–to overtly penalize whiteness because it is whiteness, alone, which created the conditions for the social relations between white and non-white people. Yet, just as a king is not inherently royal, but appointed as such via social construction, so, too, is whiteness not inherently oppressive. This ideology, which asserts that it is such, is a social construction, imposing dynamics onto relationships between people, asserting a misrecognition as absolute truth.

Symposium on Grief

A Parable on Voice

For starters, the more good, ethical people push back against my critique of Critical Race Theory, the more invested I am in its study. Not because I wish to prove these good folks wrong, but because I am really trying to find the good in the framework, to see what it is they must know, which I am missing. The cycle, then, persists, because the more I investigate the theory and its practice, the more suspicious I become of its widespread acceptance and use across disciplines and social communities. After engaging in dialogue with a few individuals about the Voice of Color Thesis, I discovered an analogy for said thesis, which I would like to present to you today. It will take the shape of a metaphor, or a parable.

Sublime Influence

Sublime Influence

When an object (or dream or goal) holds sublime status for us, it has the power to steer our movement in the world, in less than wholesome ways. Recall that an object (or dream or goal) attains the status of the sublime when we fantasize its attainment will satiate desire. Spoiler alert: no object, dream or goal will ever satiate desire because desire is innate to our experience as humans.

The Sublime

What is the Sublime?

I love the way Žižek uses currency as an exemplar for the sublime. Currency has a corporal body subject to decay, like any other corporal body. However, because an external authority deems it to be, currency retains its market value, regardless of its wear and tear. Unlike a car, which loses value as soon as it’s driven off the dealership lot, currency possesses its full market value as long as it remains in circulation. In this manner, due to the intervention of authority, money, as a thing, transcends decay, because regardless of its condition, it always possesses the fullness of its value.

The Good, The Bad, and The In Between

Now that I’ve committed to the decision to bow out of the TikTok community, I have begun (as per my typical response to opportunities terminated) to deconstruct the entire experience. With that said, I created a video for IGTV and YouTube that explains how I achieved success on the platform, and why I refuse to continue doing what is necessary in order to sustain that form of success.

2021 Vision

When I began my website, and when I began producing video content, I was far along my journey of religious deconstruction. I’d begun studying philosophy and psychoanalysis and I wanted a medium through which I could process new insights–to analyze my past experience and to reconstruct the narrative of my existence.

Writing–creating–became a rite of exorcism as I purged my psyche and the demons writhed across the lines.

My website, in particular, and the act of creating, generally, has always been primarily for me–for catharsis and for healing.

Benjamin Bloom identified evaluation as the highest level of intellectual behavior for learning. When we evaluate, we appraise, we judge, we assess, we defend, but it isn’t enough to do these within the confines of the mind. The production of something tangible–the act of producing, itself–deepens understanding and certifies absorption by the psyche of all we’ve dismantled, analyzed, critiqued, and reconstructed. The act of creating anchors insight. Anchored insight emboldens resolve, and bold resolve affirms conviction, which is absolutely necessary for the birth of authentic ethics.

Authentic ethics is my ultimate goal.

This year, I endeavor to honor my roots–by producing content with this sublime goal in mind.

I intend to shift my focus away from social media and onto my website–not to abandon social media altogether–but to produce content for my internet home that aligns with my original intent.

Last year, I lost sight of my true purpose. Platforms and algorithms have a way of diluting content by imposing artificial standards on creators. I’ve allowed “the algorithm,” in all its varied manifestations, to shape the arc of my creation, and it is my aim to abandon that error.

Going forward, I will focus my efforts on producing what I want to produce for my website (my platform), and when it is appropriate, I will share what I can to social media. I am permitting myself to be the author of my own destiny, and it is my hope that you’ll visit from time to time and find respite and refreshment when you do.

The Dollhouse

As an autistic person, I often struggle to understand the origins of my feelings, in spite of the fact that they overwhelm me. Creating content like this helps me understand myself better. It helps me to reframe the narrative of my experience, contextualizing all within the landscape of family dysfunction, and the disconnect between my experience and my parents’ perception of me.