For this week’s discussion post you may write either on the final chapters of What Is Found There or the first few chapters (I have attached a pdf version of these chapters in course content) of Sounds of Freedom. As usual, please write at least a five paragraph response to the assigned readings and at least a one paragraph response to the writings of a fellow student. The discussion post should be posted by 11:59day Wednesday, December 9th. I hope you will enjoy our next book! Attached Files: File Sounds of Freedom.pdf (1.708 MB) Example Discussion post: Born and raised in Chicago, just after the end of World War II, Laurie Anderson has surely lived tumultuous times. It is undoubtedly this experience that has shaped her views on politics, arts, and society. In terms of society, her perspectives are interesting. In the lyrics of her song, “The End of the Moon,” Anderson hits the nail in the head. She uses a decolonized viewpoint to better explain the perception that the rest of the world has of developed countries, and particularly the United States of America when she sings “Why does everybody hate us? Is it because we are rich, free and democratic? No. It’s like in high school when the beautiful girl says, People hate me because I am beautiful.’ No, actually people hate you because you’re a jerk!” Her views of politics are intriguing as well. During her interview with John Malkin, Anderson reveals the possibility that our wars are not different wars, but only one. I find this particular point very enlightening because, despite the media and politicians innumerable attempts to deceive us, American citizens manage to see hints that lead to the conclusion that all these wars are interconnected. The relation lies in the interests they represent. As I read her say this, I couldn’t avoid thinking that perhaps the other wars, the social wars are part of this huge war Anderson describes. Might it be crazy to think that there could be a relationship between these military wars and the war on poverty and war on drugs? I do not think so, because they are the consequences of a socio-political-economic system that promotes the pernicious values of greed and materialism. Another fascinating point of view of Anderson is the one related to ideals. She confesses to admire the French revolution and what it represents. Nevertheless, she also admits her problems with the emphasis made on individual rights. This emphasis, according to her, put relegates to a lower level responsibility. This connects with the core values of capitalism and how they affect collective rights. Giving more importance to individual rights over collective rights has brought us the levels of inequality that we experience nowadays. On top of poverty and inequality, this accent on individual rights also harms our planet. In that sense, I view a positive her criticism toward the stress that individual rights enjoys over the interests of the conglomerate and its well-being. Finally, Anderson touches a sensible string when she speaks of the manipulation of the truth. It is true that lastly we have experienced a lot of lying from our media and politicians. The saIDest part, however, is not the lying, but the act of believing these lies. Nowadays, as she very well mentions, any president can, with total impunity and without any hint of shame, lie about even history, just like George W. Bush did when he talked about the founding fathers. But the media is not serving is role. I would not be surprised if none of the analysts that work for major News companies, such as FoxNews, CNN, or ABC ever correct the at-the-time president for such an unforgivable blunder. In the end, Anderson speaks of many relevant issues and topics. The topics she touched that struck me the hardest were her views on the last wars we’ve been engaged in, on ideals, and on the manipulation of truth. From my point of view, it is necessary to have more critical voices in the arts that will strike at the core of the powerful. Given the status quo, they will need the help of the ordinary citizen to have a space in the palestra.
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