Category Archives: Society

Cindy

One of my all-time favourite artists, Cindy Sherman, on Art21.

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People think because it’s photography it’s not worth as much, and because it’s a woman artist, you’re still not getting as much – there’s still definitely that happening. I’m still really competitive when it comes to, I guess, the male painters and male artists. I still think that’s really unfair.

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Each country..

Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. – LeoTolstoy, Anna Karenina

Totally altering that quote to fit my life goes like this:Countries are all alike; each country is crazy in its own way.

When I lived in Thailand, I often felt like the country was crazy. I mean, it is. To me. There is an acronym there used among foreigners, TIT – This Is Thailand. As in, what did you expect? This is Thailand, baby! It really takes living there (and, in my opinion, working there) to truly even begin to see the myriad differences, let alone understand them.

As I was getting ready to go to Germany, I asked around about the requirements for obtaining an artist freelance visa. One of them is having valid insurance by a German provider.

After dealing with my twenty questions (because, geez, insurance is bloody complicated!) my potential insurer ended up providing me with a truly invaluable service – giving an inside glimpse at the nonsensical rules + regulations of the bureaucratic world of German insurance. This is from one of his emails.

Just today: Client told that cover for pregnancy, premature baby and congenital conditions is compulsory!   The client is a 65 year old man who has had a vasectomy!

Female who has pregnancy cover in a group scheme.  Her husband and her new born child must also have the same cover because it is a group scheme!

Last week: A gay male couple in an official Civil Partnership were told that as Civil partnerships now qualify for the same benefits as a heterosexual marriage, including child benefits etc., then one of them had to have pregnancy cover – they should decide which one themselves!

A gay female couple were told the same and even offered IVF (In Vitro Fertilisation) or AID (Artificial Insemination by Donor) – but not a male partner!

At first I thought, gee, maybe Thailand isn’t so crazy after all! Then I realized that, no, Thailand is totally crazy. Like how each person boasts their own unique brand of insanity, each country is insane in their own way. You just need to get a feel for the country’s particular brand of insanity and see whether it fits with (or, better yet, complements) your own. I don’t think I’ve found my country-mate yet, but I have a feeling that it might take a combination of two or three to make a satisfying match for me at the moment.

Compromise, patience, understanding = Words of the year!

Century of the Self

My argument with so much psychoanalysis is the pre-conception that suffering is a mistake, or a sign of weakness, or a sign even of illness, when in fact possibly the greatest truths we know have come out of people suffering; that the problem is not to undo suffering or to wipe it off the face of the earth but to make it inform our lives instead of trying to cure ourselves of it constantly and avoid it, and avoid anything but that lobotomized sense of what they call happiness. There’s too much of an attempt, it seems to me, to think in terms of controlling man, of defining him rather than letting him go and it’s part of the whole ideology of this age, which is power mad.

– Marilyn Monroe’s ex-husband Aurther Miller on psychotherapy, after her suicide:

The BBC documentary series The Century of the Self talks about the link between consumerism and Freudian psychoanalysis in the US, showing the latter to be a repressive form of societal control. I found the series incredibly informative and learned some new things about two of my favourite topics, societal constructs and consumerism. Filmmaker Adam Curtis has made a ton of other quality docos, too. Next on my list is a series called The Power of Nightmares. Happy watching!

On school

This is almost perfect, I think. (Brainpickings is the best!)

I’m not sure about the living in a commune part. Teens needs some sort of healthy guidance, discipline and boundaries. But I do love idea of letting teens have those years to be free, experience, live, act, explore, have positive sex education, time away from parents, etc.

Even though I’m not sure what the best alternative would look like, I’m confident that highschool is for the birds.

Do you think our current school system should be torn down and re-built into something totally different?