Philosophies which have fascinated me

I have been an avid reader of Philosophy and Literary theory. Here I would like to explicate some philosophies which have fascinated me.

I am fond of Plato especially his theory of forms. There is a dark cave and in it lot of people and they can see light emanating from a wall obstructing the cave. What Plato meant was there was an ideal world apart from the physical world.

Next is the Philosopher Hegel who said there is a thesis, synthesis and antithesis. Let’s use an example to illustrate his idea. The end of World War I brought the harsh treaty of Versailles on Germany a thesis and this gave rise to the rise of Nazi rule in Germany an antithesis and brought forth the persecution of Jews synthesis.

Next I would like to take up the Philosophy of Marx. Marxian theory follows upon the modality of dialectical materialism. Everything starts from production and in a society there is the proletariat or the working class who form the base of the society and then there is the bourgeoisie the capitalists and the various ideological apparatuses like police, govt., law media etc. Workers are exploited class and one day by revolution they will seize the reins of power and establish a got based on equality and justice. However Marxism is a failed theory.

Next I would like to meander into literary theory and I would like to take up the Philosopher Derrida and his idea of deconstruction. Texts privilege some and marginalize others. Through a process of deconstructive reading we attain an interpretative mode of how privilege and marginalization occur.

Next I would like to take plunge into existentialism and the ideas of John Paul Sartre. Sartre introduces the concept of angst and he also introduces a notion of being which occurs in three processes, being in itself, being for itself and being for others. All this he assimilates as ego states. Being for in itself is a state of primary consciousness. Being for itself is an experiential context of being where the being traverses between angst, ecstasy and catharsis. Being for others is an eleemosynary state of being where the being is being empathetic.

Next I would like to explain Julia Kristeva’s semiotic and the symbolic realm. The semiotic realm is a structure of language where there is absence of grammar and punctuation. The semiotic realm occurs in streams of consciousness narratives, in music and dance. The symbolic realm is a structure where texts contain a coherent ideological structure of language. Medicinal and legal texts are symbolic structures. Literary texts contain both semiotic and symbolic realms.

Next I would like to explain the thought of the structuralists. Structuralism divides the language into signs. A sign is made up of the signifier and the signified. The signifier is a visual tangible thing belonging to the realm of the senses. The signified is an idea. For example if I say Rose is Passion: Rose is the signifier and passion the signified.

Next I would like to make intrusions into Freudian theory. Freudian theory proposes the ID the Ego and the Super Ego. The ID is the primary seat of passion, the Ego the language and culture that is assimilated and the Super Ego the laws of the society. An individual has to do a tight-rope-walking between these three states to hold life in equilibrium. Next I would like to explain the Oedipus complex where a child develops a love towards the mother and hatred and desire to kill the father. Freud is mistaken in his view and it is only at the onset of puberty that sexuality awakens. Emotional and empathetic bonding will make childhood into a wholesome being.

Next I would like to take up the Lacanian gaze and the mirror stage. The mirror stage is a stage of childhood where the child attains the maturity of gazing upon oneself as a mirror. Here language enters into the realm of consciousness of the child and world of the child traverses from plenitude to lack. The mirror stage has been used in film studies and critical theory. Next I would like to introduce the concept of the gaze. The gaze has strong sexual connotations. Feminists have developed the concept feminine gaze. And there in today’s word there exists lesbian and gay gaze.

I would like to take up some ideas of the Philosopher Camus. Camus says that we should authenticate our existence and we should avoid suicide. For Camus life is meaningless and absurd. In his book the myth of the Sisyphus, man is condemned to roll a boulder uphill only to find that it is pushed down by the Gods and he has to roll it up all the away. Camus is famous for atheistic nihilism.

Next I would like to explain Nietzsche’s theory of ART. For Nietzsche art was the combination of the Dionysian and the Apollonian. The Dionysian includes rhythm and beat and the apollonian includes melody and harmony. When the Dionysian and the Apollonian elements merge there occurs art. The Dionysian element stands for altered states and ecstasy and Apollonian element stands for catharsis and angst.

It was the Philosopher Aristotle who introduced the idea of Catharsis by which he meant the purification of the soul while watching tragedy. All art is made up of Catharsis, Angst and Ecstasy. Life is a celebration of these three states of being.


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