7 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2018
    1. Immediately many people will object that this is too hard, too implausible, contradictory to human nature, politically impossible, uneconomical, and so on. Yeah yeah. Here we see the shift from cruel optimism to stupid pessimism, or call it fashionable pessimism, or simply cynicism. It’s very easy to object to the utopian turn by invoking some poorly-defined but seemingly omnipresent reality principle. Well-off people do this all the time.
    2. One way of being anti-anti-utopian is to be utopian. It’s crucial to keep imagining that things could get better, and furthermore to imagine how they might get better. Here no doubt one has to avoid Berlant’s “cruel optimism,” which is perhaps thinking and saying that things will get better without doing the work of imagining how. In avoiding that, it may be best to recall the Romain Rolland quote so often attributed to Gramsci, “pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will.” Or maybe we should just give up entirely on optimism or pessimism—we have to do this work no matter how we feel about it. So by force of will or the sheer default of emergency we make ourselves have utopian thoughts and ideas.
  2. Jun 2017
  3. Jul 2016
    1. I’ve heard it suggested often that the World Wide Web is an example of what Ivan Illich called “convivial tools” — although his book predates the Web by 15+ years, Illich speaks of “learning webs” in Deschooling Society. I grow less and less certain that the Web is quite “it."

      Yours in struggle.

    1. cautiously optimistic

      One of the many reasons we need Maha in our world. Honestly, there’s a lot out there to bring us down. The problem with that, in part, is that it may discourage the most courageous among us. Not Maha, though. Proving once again how courageous she is (despite her claim to the contrary), she brings us forward on our quest for empowered learning despite technology.

  4. Nov 2015
    1. Isn’t the point of life to change and improve, rather than just accept things the way they are and naively believe the future will be better? In fact, mindfulness and the other techniques discussed help put us in better touch with reality so we can see things clearly and act from there. And thanks to neuroplasticity, science has shown that we are able to change.
  5. Nov 2013