- Feb 2019
Definition: (noun) Having or showing the ability to speak fluently and coherently; having joints or jointed segments; (verb) pronounce (something) clearly and distinctly; express (an idea or feeling) fluently and coherently; form a joint.
Origin: Mid-16th century: from Latin articulatus, past participle of articulare ‘divide into joints, utter distinctly’, from articulus ‘small connecting part.’
Definition: The skill of clear and expressive speech, especially of distinct pronunciation and articulation; a particular style of speaking.
Origin: Late Middle English (denoting oratorical or literary style): from Latin elocutio(n-), from eloqui ‘speak out’ (see eloquence).
Wait, the same dude who talked shit about Mary Astell?
LOL what the f
And besides, we're all of us liable to mistake, .md few have 1-lumility enough to confess themselves Deceiv'd in what they have confidently asserted, hut think they're obliged in Ho• nour to maintain :m Opinion they've once been Zealous for, how desirous soever they may be to gel rid on't, cou'd they do ii handsomely.
Lol is she throwing shade rn because this sentence reminds me of the shade de Pizan threw too
your Friendships arc not cemented by Intrigues nor spent in vain Diversions, but in the search of Knowledge
Women's rhetorical sphere and a space/place for knowledge/information exchange: women's conversations
I hope heller things of you; I dare say you understand your own interest too well to neg\cct it so grossly and have a greater share of sense, whatever some Men affirm, than to be content to be kept any longer under their Tyranny in Ignorance and f-olly. since it is in your Power lo regain your Freedom, if you plcusc but !'endeavour it.
Again, we see Astell's argument working as super confrontational and super empowering at the same time.
Firmness and strength of Mind ·,_ 1 • ..will carry us thro all these little persecutions,, ..... ..-orrt ... • h' h . r • • w 1c may create us some uneasiness 1or a.. .t...t 0r while, but will afterwards end in our Glory and-....:� Triumph.
I think it's important to note that the words Astell is using are not unusual or incredibily difficult to understand -- they are, in fact, pretty conversational, and don't seem pretentious or alienating. She's working with her audience.
it is not because you mm! but because you will.
This is awesome. It's confrontational but also empowering -- definitely keeping her audience in mind.
The Men of Equity
attract the audience's auention wilh an unusually striking expression here and there, to arouse admiration for the way the woman rhetor uses language.
This is more for the men in the audience than the women, no?
Obscurity, verbosity, and pretentiousness are to be avoided; unusual words are to be used only when they aid clarity and prevent the aforementioned faults. For Aslell, women's rheloric should focus on the art of conversation, us both Sutherland and Renaissance scholar Jane Donawerth have argued. This is women's proper rhetorical sphere, different from but in no way inferior to the public sphere in which men use oratory.
My mind immediately went to gossip and how the exchange/passing along of information/knowledge between women has been through this "proper rhetorical sphere" -- (private) conversations.
The way obscurity is used here versus how it's used by Locke is also very interesting and very, very gendered.
became acquainted with other female intellectual leaders such as Lady Mary Wortley Monlagu and Lady Catherine Jones. Astell's new friends respected her learning and intelligence and encouraged her to publish her views.
We can see how the importance of female-only/female-dominated spaces in Astell's life played a major role in how she envisioned female learning/education could/should look like.
to serve God whatever their circumstances and lo support themselves through teaching if that hecame necessary.
Oooo this is a very clever way to educate women so that they can support themselves. To serve God -- duh. Of course.
she did not advocate extensive reading. She wanted her program to be within the reach of every woman-
I'm thinking this is also a nod at the time women had/didn't have because of the various duties they had to fulfill. Also maybe a nod at the fact that women would probably not really have a space/place in which they could extensively read. Yes?
too individualistic, devoid of the community feeling that should bind Chris� thms together.
It's funny how today this view of how Christians should behave with/in society would probably be labeled as socialist (or, at least, not conservative).
n which all relationships were infused with a spirit of Christian love.
Once again, very clever.
Aslell specified in lhe charter or lhe school that it should alwuys he directed by women.
And once again, we see how the importance of female-only/female-dominated spaces/places in Astell's life influenced her beliefs on female learning/education.
This view of Christianity emphasized that humans had inborn conceptions of the true and the good that naturally attracted them to these qualities when they were encountered in the world.
She definitely put this view to work for her and for women.
Especially helpful to Astell were the arguments of Descartes that extensive classical learning, from which women had been largely excluded. was not necessary to a vibrant intellectual life: All people were innately capable of reason. the key men· tal activity
Aaaaaand here is where de Pizan would probably give her a high-five.
More seriously, Christine de Pizan did something very similar to what I think Astell has done. They both seem to take the philosophical arguments made by famous male philosophers that were used against them/their sex/gender and instead make those philosophical arguments work with and for them/their sex/gender. Astell also seems to do this with religion.
Censure vs. censor...
Express severe disapproval of vs. suppress what is deemed unacceptable....
She frequently uses one and not the other.
Meaning "little Madonna" or "small Madonna." What is fascinating about this reference is the history behind the Madonnelle street shrines (little Madonnas) in Rome/other Italian cities. These little Madonnas were seen as the protectors of the communities in which they looked over (literally believed to be protecting them from evil). Also, lamps in front of the shrines were lit at night to guide passer-bys through the darkness, and, unlike other Madonna icons, these little Madonnas gazed directly at the viewer, establishing "a personal connection between the two." Maybe not such a ridicuous bluestocking figure to compare Mary Astell to afterall?
- de Pizan
- Jan 2019
while brains may be wired to seethe world, how and what is seen is never without a cultural component.
In my research on coffee talks with Bosnian/Bosniak women, there's a (recent) story I came across in which a family of four (mom, dad, daughter, son) who are part of the diaspora living in America are visited by grandma, who grew up and continues to live in Bosnia. Upon arrival, the grandma witnesses American coffee culture first-hand when her daughter, son-in-law, and grandkids gather around the kitchen table one morning and drink their coffee -- which was made by a machine -- quickly and quietly before running off to work or school. She is deeply horrified -- offended even -- so much so that she shortens her trip from one month to a week. In Bosnia, what kind of coffee you drink, how you make it, who you drink it with, when, and for how long, what you talk about while drinking it -- these are all very significant things. In America, not so much.
Acoustic archaeologists have found that images areoften placed carefully for particular sounds and echoes, underscoring the point that ancientpeoples explored the full potential of the cave environment, including its deep darkness andunique sonic properties.
This is dope, and it makes me think of the ways in which spaces/places of worship are also spaces/places where acoustic performances happen (sermons, singing of religious songs).
athedrals than anything else. People did not live in the caves,although they sought shelter around them and in their entrances.
This is similar to the ways in which spaces/places of worship are used today, too.
hese con-ditions are sedimented not solely in cultural narrative, ritual, and practice, but in howthey are made, accumulated, and enacted in (or through) material forms.
I've been writing and researching about the coffee talks that Bosnian/Bosniak women partake in and how our particular coffee came to be, how and when it affected/s our minds/bodies, and how it allowed for the emergence of a women-only space designed to foster the exchange of information+women's experiences and hold together entire communities. Coffee, for Bosnian/Balkan women, worked by stabalizing networks, and ultimately stabilizing Yugoslavia (you know, before the men and the West kinda fucked things up a bit). My research is ethnographic, and Rickert's argument here comes off a little bit like that.
What if we rode harder onthe performative, as Barad urges, seeing it as“material enactments that contribute to, andare a part of, the phenomena we describe.”19This ontological shift asks us to situate thehuman more complexly in the material world, and seek out fresh understandings ofhow it manifests in who we are and what we do.
This reminds me of Foucault's Self Writing.
since its purpose is neither resolution nor stasis but continuing process.
Rhetoric, like the story of the carrier bag, like women's work...never finished, done, complete.
I don't know why this word in particular made me so upset, but like... dude, women are always holding shit. Handbags, babies, oats, always fucking something. And whatever that thing is that we're holding, it's almost always something that either a) sustains life, or b) is life.
if to do thatis human, if that's what it tak§, tnen I am a human being after all. 'Fully, freely, gladly, for tneficst time.
I have to bring up James Cone and Albert Camus again -- but this time I'm reminded of Camus' The Rebel) and this paragraph from Cone's Black Power and Black Theology: "The crucial question, then, for the black man, is 'How should I respond to a world which defines me as a nonperson?' That he is a person is beyond question, not debatable. But when he attempts to relate as a person, the world demands that he respond as a thing. In this existential absurdity, what should he do? Should he respond as he knows himself to be, or as the world defines him?" Rebellion is what Cone, Camus, and Le Guin decide to do when they redefine what it means to be a person, to be human.
I used to be comforted by their cheering words, by the hours they spent at my bedside, and by their conversation.
Chicken soup for the self-writer's soul? Jk.
Yet another thing words can do: heal.
it also constitutes a certain way of manifesting oneself to oneself and to others.
Seneca does not just give him advice and comment on a few great principles of conduct for his benefit. Through those written lessons, Seneca continues to exercise himself; according to two principles that he often invokes; it is necessary to train oneself all one’s life, and one always needs the help of others in the soul’s labor upon itself.
So, we, too, are exercising ourselves through these readings and annotations -- we are corresponding and collaborating.
For, as Seneca points out, when one writes one reads what one writes, just as in saying something one hears oneself saying it. The letter one writes acts, through the very action of writing, upon the one who addresses it, just as it acts through reading and rereading on the one who receives it.
Words, doing their thing: doing.
the help of others is necessary.
The practice of self must include help of/from others.
to make one’s recollection of the fragmentary logos, transmitted through teaching, listening, or reading, a means of establishing a relationship of oneself with oneself, a relationship as adequate and accomplished as possible.
Collaboration with(in) oneself?
we may credit Plato with demonstrating that mostquestions aren't really interested in responses at all; most questions simply wantan answer.
Instead, it might be productive not to think that we know what rhetoric is at all.
It would also be more dangerous to say we know what rhetoric is -- to define it as one thing.
our hesitation is not unjustified.
I think that hesitation as a response itself to the question "what is rhetoric?" can indicate that the person being asked understands the consequences and complexities surrounding the question and its answer.
o one, or almost no one, fads to beheve 1n climate chan~Je out of sincere ignorance. Ttiey •choose-to d1sbeheve either for material gain or 1ust to be dicks.
"If people were more aware of x, then they would realize they're wrong about y, and they would do z" is a line that is constantly repeated in my WGST classes, and I always look like an asshole when I argue that that's not how things work.
I would argue that this mixture of play, game, and purpose was the characteristic product (if not always the avowed purpose) of the rhetorical, as against the philosophical, paideia.
To doubt Blum was to doubt the traditional edu-cational system and therefore the entire society. Nobody wanted to do it.
This is the politics of ignorance at play. If you acknowledge that there is a problem, you must then address that problem. You must do something about that problem. If you don't want to do something, then you will choose not to acknowledge that there is a problem.
We regularly, in the interests of Plato-worship, disembody language and reason, with the narrow-mindedness Mark Johnson points out in an important recent book, The Body in the Mindl3 Our persistent evasion of the "Q" question makes for a great deal of self-centered, self-serving preaching and a great deal of self-satisfied practice. We do sometimes follow that master of contemptuous, self-satisfied self-absorp-tion, the Platonic Socrates, closely indeed.
This reminds me of Albert Camus' thoughts on absurdity, and what James Cone says in his book Black Theology and Black Power: "All aspects of this society have participated in the act of enslaving blacks, extinguishing Indians, and annihilating all who question white society's right to decide who is human....Absurdity arises as the black man seeks to understand his place in the white world. The black man does not view himself as absurd; he views himself as human. But as he meets the white world and its values, he is confronted with an almighty No and is defined as a thing. This produces the absurdity."
How convenient: a male-dominated, -controlled, -constructed, and -celebrated space is the space in which he is able to do and experience all of this. Too bad that this is also where he peaks.
Their gratitude at learning of Achilles or the categorical imperative is bound-less. (344)
trying co read chem as cheir authors wished them co be read
Train someone in it and, according co Quintilian's way of thinking, you have trained that person to be virtuous. "Virtuosity is some evidence of virtue." To chink of this at/through toggle switch as "virtuous," as implicitly moral, is to com-prehend the deeply felt "reasoning" behind Quintilian's evasive answer to his own question and to glimpse, perhaps, the beginnings of a legitimate explanation of, and justification for, what the humanities do--or at least can do.
The image of Lady Justice popped into my head as I was reading this, and I was particularly thinking about her blindfold and how it's meant to represent impartiality, the philosphical ideal that "justice should be applied "without regard to wealth, power, or other status." Upon looking at her Wikipedia page, I discovered that Lady Justice did not originally wear a blindfold because her "maidenly form" guaranteed her impartiality. If we're "toggling" between rhetoric and philosophy here, then it must also be argued that we're "toggling" between the feminine and the masculine. And If sex/gender was once what qualified someone to be impartial, how does this complicate the idea of virtue/training someone to be virtuous? How does it complicate our understanding of what the humanities do/can do? How does it help us work at/through what/who was/is/could be considered human?
Can such a list be said to repre-sent Life, as it is known ixu:he.midsLOf..the living ofit
Well, it can and it can't, right?
You cannot assemble a list oJ neucra!Tacts wl:iidi every citizen in a secular society can safely learn as a fac-tual bible, a body of knowledge beyond cavil, which once-absorbed guar-antees public virtue.
And if you try to, you're probably a fucking monster.
he would extend this to "science" tout court-does not use value-free lan-guage, that value-free language does not exist, and that we cannot posit a purely transparent language devoid of distracting ornament, through which we transact business with pure facts.
This reminds me of an article I read in my Feminist Epistemologies class, "The Egg and the Sperm: How Science Has Constructed a Romance Based on Stereotypical Male-Female Roles," which shook me to my core. It argues that science and culture are intertwined and that they influence and reinforce one another. The scientific descriptions of egg, sperm, reproduction, and ovulation she provides to support her argument show how dangerous the perpetuation of the idea of "value-free" and/or unbiased language can be (and is).
The meaning of the terms did change, not because their relations changed but because the reality underneath them changed.
Underneath the Jenga blocks....
his great curricular judgment Day when all things rruu human-ist specialization has rent apart will come together, though we continually believe in and plan on it, continues to elude us.
If such an event did occur, would we even be able to handle it as humans, as we are now? Do we fear that this would too explicitly showcase the complexities we try so hard to ignore, as well as our own limitations?
can be sure chat simple, straightforward reading will produce guaranteed right doctrine.
Because the theologian is reading it "as a good humanist would read a classic pagen text." Obvi.
Theo-ry and practice are found to agree because the agreement was decided on beforehand.
Very important to ask who decided this and why.
As with Ramus, reason is one thing, and primary; rhetoric is another, derivative and cosmetic. Permitted in the service of n ch, it is otherwise an abomination.
I read this as: Reason = primary = (hu)man/masculine Rhetoric = other = woman/feminine
To be a woman is to be other. To be other is to be an abomination and, therefore, not human.
If you separate the discipline of discourse into essence and ornament, into philosophy and rhetoric, and make each a separate discipline, it makes them easier to chink about.
You also make them boring.
Value-free language and the possibility of a self-contained discipline make possible both modern sci-ence and that mapping of humanistic inquiry onto a scientific model which has created modern social science as well.
And yet, any mapping of humanistic inquiry onto a scientific model would lead to the creation of incomplete maps, of certain lies. One of those lies? If you can't use the scientific method to come to know something, then that something isn't knowledge/true/truth/fact.
To read it is co learn how the "humanities crisis" started, how the conception oflanguage as value-free and ideally transparent underwrote the modern world.
To read it is also to learn how/why we have been lied to and how/why we will continue to lie to ourselves and others.
~ shout out to my homie Nietzsche ~
there is as much truth as we need, maybe more,
And not enough of other truths.
there the advocate cannot prejudge the case lest he threaten both jus-tice and his own livelihood.
There is danger afoot.
I remember when I used to think that achieving equality under the law was like playing Jenga. Legal precedents were things that were stacked--one on top of another--like a tower of Jenga blocks, intricately connected. To fight for equality was to strategically go after specific precedents (blocks) that would eventually cause the tower to fall and allow for new, pro-equality precedents to be made (stacked), creating a new tower. But then I realized that Jenga can't be played if the initial blocks aren't placed on top of something else -- a particular surface/foundation -- and the same goes for legal precedents. There's always something lurking below (or beyond). We are still prejudging when it comes to the law -- but not in a way that works with or for everyone.
- James Cone
- black power
- black theology
- politics of ignorance