quick anecdote… quick is subjective haha don’t let capitalism dictate your idea of speed… ;)
I wanted to post this story (and rant apparently) because it’s an example of a racial, anti-mad micro-aggression (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microaggression), aka seemingly small daily (oppressive/repressive/supressive) actions which subtly maintain the status quo of power (and as we know, the current state of power is racist, patriarchal, heteronormative, En-ablist, etc.).
The pathologizing (both between people and from structures of power acting on us from above) of race, class, gender, sexuality, differently & less-legible bodies, religious &/or spiritual beliefs, etc., is extremely important to study and be aware of. (Don’t even get me started on the link between racial formation during Radical Reconstruction in which white men pitted southern white Women and Black men against each other in a sexual narrative of rape to justify lynching, and it’s undeniable parallels to mass culture’s extremely emotional defense/protection of innocent taylor swift against the CrAaAaAzY Kanye West.)
Pathologizing is a How of racism, classism, sexism. It a major tactic of scary structural powers which seek to maintain the exclusion of people/other animals/the earth. This exclusion maintains their inclusion, their access to power. This is why Radicals and Mad people are trying to stop saying “that’s so crazy.” Because that kind of daily diagnosis is rooted in the idea that ppl who are more calm, reasonable, normal, can objectively assess something and categorize it as beyond comprehension. Mad pride asks “beyond whose comprehension exactly?” society does a LOT of work to keep power by normalizing certain locations and positions, so as to unify a collective sense of comprehension. Doesn’t this sound just like affluent (read: indebted to britain) “white” pre-U.S. people inventing themselves as a race so as to trick poor “whites” to see themselves as having something in common with the ((((rich)))) “white” (dudes), instead of all that poor “whites” & “whites” descended from “white” slaves actually had in common with poor “Black” people and “Black” slaves, effectively preventing poor, slave, and working class coalitional revolts? Yes it does.
my friend is in a psycho-history course on U.S. Presidents and he told me this story. As they have time-traveled through analyses of these d00ds there have been moments for each Chief of State when the class let out some cathartic “that’s crazy!” commentary. Considering that this is a course based in Bowen Family Systems Theory, which does some of the most radical contextual work of all psychological theories, pathologizing statements like “that’s SoOoooooOOo CRaZY” are already problematic.
so finally it’s near the end of the course and the class is discussing Obama’s memoir
(did i mention the class is majority white? apparently a bunch of them liked President Obama less after reading Dreams of My Father it because they felt like he was trying to get votes???? i’m just like who ARE you people? I’m pretty damn sure he would have written less about all his Black Nationalist friends and relatives if he was pandering for votes. ps whose votes are you talking about? i’m just like look white hipster peers, just because you romanticize Black Nationalism and now know Obama was informed by those politics does not mean he was trying to get your vote! … white narcissism, the fuel of neoliberalism (yes i did just diagnose that shit). Majority white liberal artz colleges have SERIOUSly dangerous reality-bubble inversion problems. Like my (white) str8 girlfriends who insist they are being oppressed by the “queer community” (most queers here would/say “what community do you mean exactly?”) because they perceive [read: project] judgment of their tolerance for misogynist boyfriends. REALITY BUBBLEs, they’re real. i know about (racist sexist neo/liberal reality bubbles from being confined for 15 months.)
and, don’t worry, equal pathologizing for all presidents Black or white, the cathartic moment finally arrived, and this white girl goes “That shit CRAY.”
That shit totally racist.
“they ain’t crazy, they don’t know how insanity feel” - Kanye West