Sunday, June 17, 2012

широкая натура

Culturally we surely live in a twilight era: both Christianity and Enlightenment humanism are fading, and they have not been replaced by anything more than spiritually dead consumerism. That's a hoary complaint I'm sure many would feel and object that there never was an era that wouldn't have been, at heart, crassly, graspingly materialistic - but that's not really an actual rebuttal. Ideals differ and change by era, and as ideals go Christianity and Enlightenment humanism are not too bad at all. We now have, increasingly freely expressed, a certain frozen narrowness of mind dominating, a certain totally bogus righteoussness that would have felt at home in the early Victorian era though devoid of the fundamentalist Christian cum primitive capitalistic justification for it. A cynical, narrow era. I don't think that it's the Net that creates this impression though it surely has removed many constraints - it mostly just reflects our current reality. Not a good time, this.


Andrei Tuch said...

Egocentric bullshit. You take the narrow slice of high culture from a bygone era that actually made it into history and influenced future philosophy, then compare it to your contemporary popular culture. At the age of Enlightenment, the vast majority of the population was not enlightened. Just as today the vast majority consumes cultural garbage. That does not signify.

stockholm slender said...

Well, I actually did address that point - obviously the majority is always inclined to cruelty and narrowness of mind, but at all times there always been countering forces, high ideals. Are you saying that their influence is not now fading in our consumer and entertainment civilization? Hard to measure these things, but I have a suspicion that we are living in a particularly empty, particularly decadent era. To a very worrying degree.