"There is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in"
(Leonard Cohen)
"Ignore all proffered rules and create your own, suitable for what you want to say"
(Michael Moorcock)
"Look for your own. Do not do what someone else could do as well as you. Do not say, do not write what someone else could say, could write as well as you. Care for nothing in yourself but what you feel exists nowhere else. And, out of yourself create, impatiently or patiently, the most irreplaceable of beings."
(Andre Gide)
"I want my place, my own place, my true place in the world, my proper sphere, my thing which Nature intended me to perform when she fashioned me thus awry, and which I have vainly sought all my life-time."
(Nathaniel Hawthorne)
“A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us.”
(Franz Kafka)
"All mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated"
(John Donne)
“Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.”
(Robert J. Hanlon)
"Life is beautiful, but the world is hell"
(Harold Pinter)

Friday, August 03, 2012

Establishment's Contradictory Coup

EXTRACTSelf-evidently then, the opening ceremony was hardly a straightforward celebration of the establishment or reactionary values. No, rather, the Boyle opening extravaganza was a complex and contradictory phenomenon that represented another attempt at rearticulating British national identity.
It was a further elaboration of the post-World War II ideology of bourgeois anti-racism predicated on an ‘inclusive’ nationalism embracing the Smiths, Patels and Adebayos as equal subjects under the crown. With everyone safely herded into the big official anti-racist tent, subscribing to the same, mythologised ‘anti-fascist’ British history, the real and hard-won democratic gains of the working class can then be being partially championed and appropriated by this new British nationalist paradigm. Welcome to the reinvented ruling class - now relaxed and prepared to mock even itself. Certainly one that no longer believes in a quasi-scientific biological racism or militaristic empire-building; one that is no longer exclusively white, heterosexual or totally obsessed by a ‘kings and queens’ view of history.
But by definition this is a constantly contested process. In that sense, Boyle’s ceremony - for all the spectacle, razzmatazz and expensive special effects - was a snapshot of the class struggle. It was therefore full of paradoxes, successes, defeats and compromises - just like political struggle and life itself. Naturally it is easy to understand why it seriously ruffled the feathers of Aidan Burley, the Daily Mail and US conservatives - as to some extent the ceremony actually was a giant promo for the Labour Party and ‘socialism’. Or “leftist multicultural crap”, to coin a phrase. But all this just shows how “crap” the ideas of the Tory right are, based on nothing much more than crazed middle class prejudices plus worship of the market, elitism, monarchy, individualism, etc.

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