All Academic, Inc. Research Logo

Info/CitationFAQResearchAll Academic Inc.
Document

Civilizational Pathology: Transcending Imperial Borders
Unformatted Document Text:  Civilizational Pathology 1 Civilizational Pathology: Transcending Imperial Borders 1 Western civilization, which is the object of critique and evaluation in these pages, has diverse sources of political influences that mainly traverse lines of thought established by the Romans, the Hebrews and the Greeks. The influence of the ancient Egyptians and West Africans are also present, but often overlooked—much to our own poverty of the life of the soul and mind. And it seems today, as it has for decades, that many of our problems are related to the unfortunate fact that we have inherited an imperialist civilization smoothed over by lingering memories of being oppressed or downtrodden states, colonies, peoples and tribes. So-called Western civilization is imperial not only in the common political sense, but in terms of consciousness as well. However, our Western imperialism is obscured by a rhetoric of freedom, a mythology of the frontier, and an ideology of capitalism. This ideology allows us to exploit 1 This paper is a palimpsest of, elaboration on, critique of, and response to Gregory Bateson’s “Conscious Purpose versus Nature,” a lecture given in August, 1968, to the London Conference on the dialectics of Liberation, and reprinted in Dialectics of Liberation, Penguin Books and Steps to an Ecology of Mind, 1972. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press (all Bateson citations refer to this text). In it, I follow his line of thought concerning the social pathologies that remain present and underlie many of the world’s political, military and paramilitary situations; I discuss and critique his use of systems theory— particularly his equation of system and nature; and I propose the adoption of discourse theory and phenomenology to account for observations excluded or obscured by a purely

Authors: Williams, Kevin.
first   previous   Page 1 of 22   next   last



background image
Civilizational Pathology
1
Civilizational Pathology: Transcending Imperial Borders
1
Western civilization, which is the object of critique and evaluation in these
pages, has diverse sources of political influences that mainly traverse lines of
thought established by the Romans, the Hebrews and the Greeks. The influence
of the ancient Egyptians and West Africans are also present, but often
overlooked—much to our own poverty of the life of the soul and mind. And it
seems today, as it has for decades, that many of our problems are related to the
unfortunate fact that we have inherited an imperialist civilization smoothed over
by lingering memories of being oppressed or downtrodden states, colonies,
peoples and tribes. So-called Western civilization is imperial not only in the
common political sense, but in terms of consciousness as well. However, our
Western imperialism is obscured by a rhetoric of freedom, a mythology of the
frontier, and an ideology of capitalism. This ideology allows us to exploit
1 This paper is a palimpsest of, elaboration on, critique of, and response to Gregory Bateson’s
“Conscious Purpose versus Nature,” a lecture given in August, 1968, to the London
Conference on the dialectics of Liberation, and reprinted in Dialectics of Liberation,
Penguin Books and Steps to an Ecology of Mind, 1972. Chicago: The University of Chicago
Press (all Bateson citations refer to this text). In it, I follow his line of thought concerning
the social pathologies that remain present and underlie many of the world’s political,
military and paramilitary situations; I discuss and critique his use of systems theory—
particularly his equation of system and nature; and I propose the adoption of discourse
theory and phenomenology to account for observations excluded or obscured by a purely


Convention
Submission, Review, and Scheduling! All Academic Convention can help with all of your abstract management needs and many more. Contact us today for a quote!
Submission - Custom fields, multiple submission types, tracks, audio visual, multiple upload formats, automatic conversion to pdf.
Review - Peer Review, Bulk reviewer assignment, bulk emails, ranking, z-score statistics, and multiple worksheets!
Reports - Many standard and custom reports generated while you wait. Print programs with participant indexes, event grids, and more!
Scheduling - Flexible and convenient grid scheduling within rooms and buildings. Conflict checking and advanced filtering.
Communication - Bulk email tools to help your administrators send reminders and responses. Use form letters, a message center, and much more!
Management - Search tools, duplicate people management, editing tools, submission transfers, many tools to manage a variety of conference management headaches!
Click here for more information.

first   previous   Page 1 of 22   next   last

©2012 All Academic, Inc.