The French Connection: combining Camus and Bourdieu to explain “alternative facts”

"Who are you going to believe, me or your own eyes?" The internet widely attributes this quote to Groucho Marx, but the gist of the joke is that the line was spoken by Chico Marx, while dressed as Groucho. In a movie (Duck Soup, 1933). In other words, you cannot trust what you see or... Continue Reading →

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Bernie Embodies the Gospel of Matthew at Liberty University: Why This is So Important

My writing from the now-defunct Bernie.blog archives, September 2015 On Monday, September 14, Senator Bernie Sanders spoke to the students of Jerry Falwell's Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, a stalwart conservative Republican soapbox since Reagan’s speech in October, 1980. Make no mistake: this is a monumental event and one that exemplifies the "Bernie brand" for... Continue Reading →

Novel Excerpt: Berea, KY

A rare day off, so I finally get to work on my novel. The first appearance of Reverend What and Kumiko Yasinovskaya: Paradise Motel, Berea, KY. Reverend What, a diminutive man, crossed the threshold from his motel room to the outside world, dressed only in pink-striped pajamas and a jipi fedora, hand-woven by Mayans in... Continue Reading →

REVIEW: Sean McCloud, “American Possessions”

McCloud, Sean. American Possessions: Fighting Demons in the Contemporary United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 2015. A tome with the ritualistic repetition of a grimoire, Dr. McCloud's American Possessions is haunted by a singular truth, the barest mystery of which possesses the reader until the final moment, when the specter of "neoliberalism" reveals its... Continue Reading →

Pierre Bourdieu on How Language Shapes Reality

Although I've written previously about Pierre Bourdieu's social theory, especially in regard to how we view religion in society, my favorite insight from his work is on how language, power and perception of reality are related in our daily lives. Here is a short summary of how language shapes our perception of reality, according to Bourdieu.... Continue Reading →

Power Relations and the Socially Constructed Self: What does this say about “belief”? Part II: Louis Althusser

In the previous post, I presented an overview of this series. Here, I will focus on Louis Althusser. After providing a more comprehensive overview of the three theorists, I will discuss the relationship between social indoctrination and personal belief. Althusser Louis Althusser claims that a primary function of State Power in a capitalist society is to perpetuate the... Continue Reading →

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