Serendip is an independent site partnering with faculty at multiple colleges and universities around the world. Happy exploring!

Reply to comment

Sophie F's picture


I like the idea that internal conflict can be a “good” thing if it can be used as a catalyst for change. I like it in that it is empowering and a way of thinking that does not place blame or judge people for feeling ill at ease, depressed, anxious, etc. It sort of reminded me of the images we looked at last week created by David Feingold. He wrote of this image /exchange/feingold08/hiddendisabilities, “Which is more problematic: When your hidden disabilities are hidden from those around you or when they're hidden from yourself?” I think this is a really interesting way to look at this issue and a question that has no answer, since both sound undesirable. I recall, at the beginning of the course, discussing “intervention” and when it might be (if at all) appropriate to interject oneself into someone else’s world in order to “help” them. Perhaps, we, collectively, need to work on evaluating other peoples’ signals better… How able are we to, whether through the story-teller function or processing through tacit knowledge, able to “sense” or give meaning to other peoples’ behavior in terms of body language and that which is not explicitly stated? Is intuition something with which one can become more in touch? This, too, harkens back to what Adi said in class about being sensitive to when other people just want someone to listen to their story and not attempt to shape it or evaluate it in any way.

Something I find interesting, too, is that our culture tends to define people based upon “self,” the individual, rather than relationships to other people. It seems that for people who may define themselves, or create stories in which “I” is, perhaps, not the primary worldly relationship, but rather “other” is (or community), this creates internal conflict. How do continually evolving relationships with others affect our relationship to ourselves? How might people who have a different sense of their relationship to the world, in a sense, be further alienated from themselves and others as a result? How can we make room for meaning to be created and accepted more widely?

In one of his descriptions of his work, David Feingold also poses the question, “what would the world be like without quirky people?” Is there a way to maximize individual potential without overtures akin to homogenization?

Is the story teller looking to tell stories that create consistent meanings over time? It would seem to make sense and if that is the case, how do we "step outsid of ourselves" and know, if it can be "known" that there are alternative stories? 


The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.
3 + 14 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.