Common sense is everyday knowledge that is passed around and often accepted as fact. It is not necessarily wrong. The problem though, is that ‘common knowledge’ also includes prejudices, stereotypes, and assumptions about social life, and our common knowledge may not apply to people outside of our social groups – people who do not share our culture, subculture, norms, values, and beliefs.
The point is: weddings enable and constrain, and I feel most couples prefer a ceremony that’s more enabling than constraining. The choice of some couples to defray all wedding expenses (as was the case in the two weddings I attended) is a subtle attempt of bride and groom to lessen that constraint, wield a little power, and assert their independence. (Image from tuscanaresort.com)
But woe to the reserve army of labor! Already disadvantaged by being the first to be laid off when the recession began, they are now doubly disadvantaged by a new manufacturing order that renders their labor unwanted. One long-term effect will be greater poverty for the unemployed, and eventually, a larger divide between the poor and the rich. (Image from globalresearch.ca)
As we close down 2013, we find ourselves, like at any other new year, at a cross roads as peoples of one world. It’s nice to look back at the year that was, and think of the year that will be; to note what could have been and what could still be.
You might be thinking that this endeavor is foolish, knowing full well that everything is sociological and anthropological, but there are those that occur that make us stop in our tracks and rethink where humanity is now, and where it is going (or not going, for that matter), and those are the events we revisit in this year-end countdown.
On the one hand, calling Miley trashy because of twerking, and leaving twerking to blacks, is not a critique of cultural appropriation. It only sends out the message that twerking does not suit white people. It is an element of a lesser culture and should remain within those subordinate peoples, where its practice actually makes them look good. (Image from billboard.com)
Sociological formulations of commodification suggest that human actions and ideas are treated like items with price tags, implying that human relationships are reduced to commercial relationships.
With the recent pork scandal, we can see the power of the family as an institution, and how the interests of political families have overshadowed the political process. (Image from annawrites.com)
The ongoing pork barrel circus is not merely a testament to the oversight of Janet Napoles and her conspirators; it is also an issue that calls us to rethink the limitations of this “iron cage of rationality,” as Max Weber puts it (image from The Manila Times).
The pork barrel is, above all, a disciplinary tool, a carrot for donkeys. It also functions to keep those in power in power and to redistribute a trickle of the nation’s wealth to the lower levels (image from Interaksyon).