Thu 2 Nov, 2017 05:26 pm
A narrative is not a conversation.
A conversation, by definition, has more than one side. You express your opinions, your ideas, your feelings and your beliefs. But then you listen to other viewpoints. You open yourself up to the needs, fears and beliefs of other people. In a conversation you can accept that issues are difficult and that compromise is a part of life.
A conversation is built on questions.
- What about the impact of wind turbines on migratory birds?
- What about the effect of pesticides on biodiversity?
- What about the needs of police officers to feel safe while doing their jobs?
These questions don't end a conversation. These questions are the conversation.
A narrative is a one-sided communication that already knows the truth that others need to accept. A narrative doesn't consider other points of view or accept any challenge to its perspective.
Where a conversation invites questions. A narrative wants to avoid them.
Our public discourse is built on competing narratives
Recently there have been several narratives that people have been calling "conversations". But they aren't conversations as long as questions are shot down and differing viewpoints are denied, ignored or attacked.
pretty big bumper sticker there.
Tu quoque; it doesn't mean what you think it means.
"Tu quoque" is a very popular phrase these days (Setanta seems to like it more than anyone). And, it is cool to throw around rhetorical terms in Latin. But people here are using it any time someone suggests a conter point, or a different perspective, or an way that a suggested policy might have a negative impact on someone else.
This term has a very specific meaning where the actions (often hypocritical) of a speaker are used to discredit the point the speaker is making. And for someone's point to be a "tu quoque", it has to be irrelevant to the main point. If I am arguing that it isn't fair because I get less time off then everyone else, someone pointing out that other people get less time off than me isn't a fallacy... it is a relevant fact.
Your ideological bubble determines what you judge to be "Tu Quoque". Many people who squawk "tu quoque" when people point out gender roles that hurt men are happy to point out that White people are terrorists too. It is part of the process of convincing yourself that your beliefs are truth.
The Singular Narrative
What is Latin for preventing conversation. The goal is to create a singular narrative that can't be questioned where people with different viewpoints, or different needs are excluded for expressing their views.
In reality, our society now has two competing narratives; equally narrow, and equally exclusive. Unfortunately two competing narratives don't equal a conversation either.
In reality, our society now has two competing narratives...
Just two? And aren't there people who reflect different facets of diverse narratives? I consider myself an anti-rightist, for instance, but I have certain reservations about immigration (although not for the reasons most conservatives give.)