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"Choice is a function of expanded awareness"

ari_hall's picture

The more you know, or are informed about things, the better equipted you are to make better choices for yourself. But sometimes knowing more also confuses you. As I have been learning more about gender, I am more aware and conscious of my own identity, and being cautious of not labeling other's identities. However, the more information I recieve, the more I also become confused. Even in Persepolis, I see Marjane Satrapi adjusting and reconfiguring the choices she makes when given more knowledge about the social revolution happening right outside her doorsteps, yet she too is sometimes confused by the different (sometimes contrasting) information she recieves.

The more I know also seems to place a burden on me. I feel like having information many others may not, puts me outside the sphere where the majority live, and creates a barrier. Knowing and understanding the oppresive institutions that operate against marginalized groups and not feeling able to help because the mainstream accepts, perpetuates and encourages them is defeating. The question activity in class really got me thinking, why doesn't society question more, and push boundaries instead of accepting them blindlly? Is it becuase its more comfortable to live in blissful naivete? Do they also feel defeated or afraid to fight for a cause that may seem impossible? Or is it because they benefit from institutionalized racism, sexism, genderism, etc. that they choose to do nothing? 

knowledge is a gift and a burden


nia.pike's picture

Active choices

Choices. Every single second of every single day we make choices. These choices are influenced by our environment both past and present including our family and friends as well as who we are as people. Each indiviual person makes different choices. We can chose to do what the people around us say is the right thing, or we can think for ourselves and carve out our own paths. I prefer to do the later. But it seems much of society, like you mentioned ari_hall, prefers to esentially chose to not make a choice. Although it is true that blindly following is a choice, it is not an active choice, it is not an informed choice. Making choices can put us outside of our comfort zone, which can be well uncomfortable, but how can we learn if we do not challenge oursleves? How can we progress if we do not question what we are told?

When you began to list off the reasons why society does not question, I realized how many of them are true. This realization made me upset. What is society becoming such that we do not question society? We are told change is good, that change is natural, that we should all welcome change, but when it comes down to going through with these words, making real change, we shy away from it like it is a disease we do not wish to infect ourselves with. People are so set in their ways, their comfortable ways that they do not wish to change beacuse they refuse to believe they could be wrong. They are sedentary in their ways even as they preach for the rest of us to perform active change, how hypocritical!