Sunday, June 28, 2009

I've linked to this before, more than once
note taking. my comments elsewhere.
I’m reminded reading this of the philosophy grad student who comes back to school in the fall after teaching undergrads in summer school and when asked how it went says: “It was strange. My students were all obsessed with sex. Not the idea of sex, or the meaning of sex, but sex!”
True story. I was told it by a witness.

“Difference” feminism. Puritanism vs the feminine prerogative. What you’re looking at in these women is the sexual performativity of mediterranean culture. The best casual commentary on Iran in the press over the past years has been Elaine Sciolino [and again] in the NY Times, who spends half her time covering the Parisian glamour beat...
Has no man reading this ever had a beautiful woman blow smoke in his face?

Glamour is the performativity of the sexually intimidating woman—intimidating according to conservative gender roles: the woman not as passive but as judge.

I just won and lost a beautiful girl by assuming that our connection revolved primarily around ideas when in fact it centered on trust. Even at my age too often I’m clueless. We communicated wonderfully but I was concentrating on the surface while she was judging my behavior: my manner, my confidence, my openness, my comfort with her.
Later she’d begun to test me -her description- and I’d gotten nervous, I began to grasp. Needing someone is not the same as liking or respecting them. She pulled away; I gave chase, briefly, but you can’t chase from weakness. I stopped and waved, she waved back and laughed and kept going. 
Trust isn’t what you say it’s how you say it and in the end I was saying very interesting things badly with obvious ulterior motives. There’s a very solid logic to the girl’s decision-making process. Trust and Intimacy are not ideas.

The entire weekend revolved around sex and sexuality. Not cheap sexuality but the sexuality of intimacy or the possibility of intimacy. Gender roles either in standard form or reversed give structure to performance and allow people to read and recognize behavior patterns. I’m a formalist. But there's a distinction between methodology and ideology; that’s where it gets interesting.
Gender roles, religion, law, theater. Public models as methodologies. We judge each other as variations on recognized codes. We only recognize one another as variations of types and tokens. An individual would be unrecognizable: unable to communicate and unable to receive communication.

The geek/pedant model of communication is a model of ideas unaffected by form, subtext, or context. The geek model of intellectualism is a joke.
Balkin is not worried.
"My view of the Supreme Court is sort of like the husband in the French farce," Balkin says. "He's always the last to know."
Posner spends most of his life in public argument. He's engaged in a form of social theater on a big stage. While trying to convince others of his beliefs he's also trying to defend them. But you can believe something in silence. Why doesn't his father just shut up and judge? Because both father and son are living a political life much more complex than the definition of 'politics' they pretend to believe in.

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