Wednesday, May 07, 2008

slow-cooking the frog

i frequently tell my students that they need to pay attention to the way things are organized instead of just their response(s) to the way things are organized. for instance, most of us have to work longer, take on more than one job, reduce vacations, etc., just to make a decent living. students today understand this, so they are looking for a career in which they can, "make a lot of money." understood. the problem is that they will be sucked into the long days, longer weeks, less time with family and friends, etc., in their pursuit of this career.

my point to them is that doing all of the above is simply a reaction to the way things are organized. another response would be to question the way things are organized and ask, "wait a minute, why do i have to do all of this just so i can have a decent wage?" in other words, instead of adapting to the environmental conditions, why not change the environmental conditions? yes, i know, it is hard, impossible, etc. these are just ways of reducing the anxiety of the awareness that our lives are really not our own; somebody is going to establish the environmental conditions, how about if we have a say in that?

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