- Oct 2018
The idea of historiology as a science implies that the disclosure of historical entities is what it has seized upon as its own task. Every science is constituted primarily by thematizing. That which is familiar prescientifically in Dasein as disclosed Being-in-the-world, gets projected upon the Being which is specific to it. With this projection, the realm of entities is bounded off. The ways of access to them get ‘managed’ methodologically, and the conceptual structure for interpreting them is outlined. If we may postpone the question of whether a ‘history of the Present’ is possible, and assign [zuweisen] to historiology the task of disclosing the ‘past’, then the historiological thematizing of history is possible only if, in general, the ‘past’ has in each case already been disclosed. Quite apart from the question of whether sufficient sources are available for the historiological envisagement of the past, the way to it must in general be open if we are to go back to it historiologically. It is by no means patent that anything of the sort is the case, or how this is possible.
Heidegger: "Every science is constituted primarily by thematizing" || Just as Heidegger does not reject facticity outright he is equally careful in his critique of the limits of thematization. Indeed, the two discussions seem to correspond on many points. Is thematization a kind of meta-factualization? A factualization with a temporal component?
Disclosing and interpreting belong essentially to Dasein’s historizing. Out of this kind of Being of the entity which exists historically, there arises the existentiell possibility of disclosing history explicitly and getting it in our grasp. The fact that we can make history our theme—that is to say, disclose it historiologically—is the presupposition for the possibility of the way one ‘builds up the historical world in the humane sciences’. The existential Interpretation of historiology as a science aims solely at demonstrating its ontological derivation from Dasein’s historicality. Only from here can we stake out the boundaries within which any theory of science that is oriented to the factical workings of science, may expose itself to the accidental factors in its way of formulating questions.
Heidegger: "making history our theme" / disclosing it "historiologically" ||
If the question of historicality leads us back to these ‘sources’, then the locus of the problem of history has already been decided. This locus is not to be sought in historiology as the science of history. Even if the problem of ‘history’ is treated in accordance with a theory of science, not only aiming at the ‘epistemological’ clarification of the historiological way of grasping things (Simmel) or at the logic with which the concepts of historiological presentation are formed (Rickert), but doing so with an orientation towards ‘the side of the object’, then, as long as the question is formulated this way, history becomes in principle accessible only as the Object of a science. Thus the basic phenomenon of history, which is prior to any possible thematizing by historiology and underlies it, has been irretrievably put aside. How history can become a possible object for historiology is something that may be gathered only from the kind of Being which belongs to the historical—from historicality, and from the way it is rooted in temporality.
Heidegger: seeking "the basic phenomenon of history" as object "prior to any possible thematizing" ||
- Apr 2018
This is a helpful guide to deep inquiry.
- Mar 2018
My youth was a disease
Most the philosophy/ ideas I've heard about immortality suggest that it is not ideal. So it's interesting that along with the theme of the story (at least the one I assume is developing about the downfall of immortality) is suggested by Bertha
- Mar 2017
This man spoke to people and the great secret was out. A kind of dread seized the people of the village. On an auspicious day, Soma went to the temple priest and asked, ‘At the coming full moon my Nataraja must be consecrated. Have you made a place for him in the temple?’ The priest answered, ‘Let me see the image first . . .’ He went over to the sculptor’s house, gazed on the image and said, ‘This perfection, this God, is not for mortal eyes. He will blind us. At the first chant of prayer before him, he will dance . . . and we shall be wiped out . . .’ The sculptor looked so unhappy that the priest added, ‘Take your chisel and break a little toe or some other part of the image, and it will be safe . . .’ The sculptor replied that he would sooner crack the skull of his visitor. The leading citizens of the village came over and said, ‘Don’t mistake us. We cannot give your image a place in our temple. Don’t be angry with us. We have to think of the safety of all the people in the village . . . Even now if you are prepared to break a small finger . . .’
Gather evidence that it is Soma which initiates how the statue is to be used and that he is generally an unhappy and selfish person. Why do you think Narayan has characterised him in this way? What role does he function in this story? What kinds of people do they represent?
The title hints at the theme of this story — humans are attached to their perfect created things out of their own selfishness.
At about five in the morning the station-master and the porter arrived, and innocently walked in. The moment they stepped in the tiger left me and turned on them. They both ran at top speed. The station-master flew back to his house and shut the door. The porter on fleet foot went up a tree, with the tiger halfway up behind him. Thus they stopped, staring at each other till the goods train lumbered in after 5:30. It hissed and whistled and belched fire, till the tiger took himself down and bolted across the tracks into the jungle.He did not visit these parts again, though one was constantly hearing of his ravages. I did not meet him again—till a few moments ago when I saw him riding in that bullock cart. I instantly recognized him by his right forepaw, where three toes and claws are missing. You seemed to be so much lost in admiration for those people who met the tiger at their own convenience, with gun and company, that I thought you might give a little credit to a fellow who has faced the same animal, alone, barehanded. Hence this narration.When the Talkative Man left us, we moved on to the square, where they were keeping the trophy in view and hero-worshipping and fêting the hunters, who were awaiting a lorry from the town. We pushed through the crowd, and begged to be shown the right forepaw of the tiger. Somebody lowered a gas lamp. Yes, three toes were missing, and a deep black scar marked the spot. The man who cut it off must have driven his knife with the power of a hammer. To a question, the hunters replied, ‘Can’t say how it happens. We’ve met a few instances like this. It’s said that some forest tribes, if they catch a tiger cub, cut off its claws for some talisman and let it go. They do not usually kill cubs.’
Compare what the humans did and what the tiger actually did. What do you think this story is saying? What role does the Talkative Man serve in this story?
We watched this scene, fascinated, drifting along with the crowd—till the Talkative Man patted us from behind and cried, ‘Lost in wonder! If you’ve had your eyeful of that carcass, come aside and listen to me . . .’ After the crowd surged past us, he sat us on a rock mount, under a margosa tree, and began his tale: I was once camping in Koppal, the most obscure of all the villages that lie scattered about the Mempi region. You might wonder what I was doing in that desolate corner of the earth. I’ll tell you. You remember I’ve often spoken to you about my work as agent of a soil fertilizer company. It was the most miserable period of my life. Twenty-five days in the month, I had to be on the road, visiting nooks and corners of the country and popularizing the stuff . . . One such journey brought me to the village Koppal. It was not really a village but just a clearing with about forty houses and two streets, hemmed in by the jungle on all sides. The place was dingy and depressing. Why our company should have sought to reach a place like this for their stuff, I can’t understand. They would not have known of its existence but for the fact that it was on the railway. Yes, actually on the railway, some obscure branch-line passed through this village, though most trains did not stop there. Its centre of civilization was its railway station—presided over by a porter in blue and an old station-master, a wizened man wearing a green turban, and with red and green flags always tucked under his arms. Let me tell you about the station. It was not a building but an old railway carriage, which, having served its term of life, was deprived of its wheels and planted beside the railway lines. It had one or two windows through which the station-master issued tickets, and spoke to those occasional passengers who turned up in this wilderness. A convolvulus creeper was trained over its entrance: no better use could be found for an ex-carriage.
The unusual narrative switch whereby the Talkative man takes over the story should surprise you. The preceding paragraph is a framing device. It establishes a key thematic idea — human civilisation vs the power of nature.
Attila was the hero of the day. Even the lady of the house softened towards him. She said, ‘Whatever one might say of Attila, one has to admit that he is a very cunning detective. He is too deep for words.’
In what way is this an irony of situation? What does it say about the nature of fate and its relation with human intentions?
But as time passed our Attila exhibited a love of humanity which was sometimes disconcerting. The Scourge of Europe—could he ever have been like this? They put it down to his age. What child could help loving all creatures? In their zeal to establish this fact, they went to the extent of delving into ancient history to find out what the Scourge of Europe was like when he was a child. It was rumoured that as a child he clung to his friends and to his parents’ friends so fast that often he had to be beaten and separated from them. But when he was fourteen he showed the first sign of his future: he knocked down and plunged his knife into a fellow who tried to touch his marbles. Ah, this was encouraging. Let our dog reach the parallel of fourteen years and people would get to know his real nature.
Narayan has a tendency to humanise animals. Can you find another place where he does so? What is the moral of such a characterisation? Can you say Narayan is more subtle or more didactic in conveying the message of the story?
In a mood of optimism they named him ‘Attila’. What they wanted of a dog was strength, formidableness and fight, and hence he was named after the ‘Scourge of Europe’.The puppy was only a couple of months old; he had square jaws, red eyes, a pug nose and a massive head, and there was every reason to hope that he would do credit to his name. The immediate reason for buying him was a series of house-breakings and thefts in the neighbourhood, and our householders decided to put more trust in a dog than in the police. They searched far and wide and met a dog fancier. He held up a month-old black-and-white puppy and said, ‘Come and fetch him a month hence. In six months he will be something to be feared and respected.’ He spread out before them a pedigree sheet which was stunning. The puppy had running in his veins the choicest and the most ferocious blood.
Consider here how fate plays with human expectations. Here, the name Attila symbolises the roles which the family hopes the dog to live up to. Then, there is hereditary genetics, which should bolster the family's hope.
Also, notice the time shift in the second paragraph. Why does Narayan begin with the naming of the dog and then go back in time?
See Narrative Techniques.
- Feb 2017
at least five keywords
I like questions like “Why do I like chicken nuggets?”
When a girl in the back of the room blurts out this question, half a joke, half a test (Do they really want us to write down any question that we think of?), she seems a bit surprised to have her query treated seriously.
Thanks for that question Neisha. Let's use it as an example of how to think of keywords for each of your questions. What would be a good one for that question?
Not really. That’s too specific. What's a more general word.
“Food,” somebody yells.
Right, write that down Neisha. What kind of food are we talking about?
Junk food. Fast food. Fried food.
Right. Right. Where do you get chicken nuggets?
Down on Nostrand Avenue where all the fast food places are.
Neisha catches the drift, interrupts: It’s in my neighborhood and not in White people's neighborhoods. They get healthy food, which is hard to find where I live.
So could we add “health” to your keywords?
And what else is in your description? What about “inequality?“
They’re good, Mister.
So, what about “delicious? “
Do we have to write five keywords for every question?
But what a gift this question was! Do you see how a question can start with something personal, something real for you, even if you aren't sure how important it is? Keep putting the personal pronoun, I, in your questions, then ask your friends and your teachers to help you find the social justice behind them. That's what to look for in your keywords.