Comment on :

Such an inventive expansion on the poem. It flows so well, yet hits us with uncomfortable truths. The juxtaposition between the smooth flow and rough lines like “taking orders like whores” is fascinating.

“We are no longer men” WOW!

Week 10: The “Sucker Punch”

Instead of political double-speak I would like to look at a concerted effort of the media to alter the public opinion of the sucker punch. This is being achieved by replacing a phrase possessing a positive connotation with one that better describes the sinister act.

A sucker punch is basically punching someone in the head when they are not ready. Previously it was reported as a “King-Hit” which alludes to a grandiose and macho action. This has been replaced with the term “Coward Punch” which is a much more accurate description of it.

Growing up with my fair share of knuckleheads I was exposed to these word games in day to day life. The guy who threw the sucker punch would call it a “King Hit”. The one on the receiving end would label it a “Dog Shot”. The same action would receive a different name depending on which side of the altercation one was on.

Interestingly, in self-defence terminology it is called a “Pre-Emptive Strike”. The logic is that in a real life violent encounter blocking and dodging is ineffective. If you are reacting to the onslaught of the other person you are in a lot of trouble. One saying that sticks with me is “in order to succeed in a violent encounter, you need to be the one doing the violence to the other person”. This is good advice if you are in a terrible situation where violence is your only means of escape. Unfortunately many people resort to violence simply because they are losing an argument, or worse, just in a bad mood. “Pre-Emptive Strike” could be a way for a person to justify their “Coward Punch”. The USA invading a foreign country springs to mind for some reason.

Comment on:

Great call to action Dave!
One of my favourites is “enhanced interrogation”; it’s bloody torture!!!! “Pre-emptive strike” instead of unprovoked attack because we suspect something may possibly happen in the future. “Downsizing” instead of we’re going to sack a bunch of people. It’s become so prominent I’m not sure most of us know we are being subjected to it, or doing it ourselves.
Nice use of video too.

Week 8: Being the Bossman

“I perceived in this moment that when the white man turns tyrant it is his own freedom that he destroys. He becomes a sort of hollow, posing dummy, the conventionalised figure of a sahib.” – George Orwell

This paragraph conjures up the image of the “Great and Powerful Oz”, who sustained his power by fooling the masses into believing he was a masterful wizard. Make no mistake, the British Empire definitively possessed the firepower to destroy anyone who opposed them, but one cannot rule a dead population. Ghandi proved that the people needed to co-operate with their rulers in order for the tyrants to be successful. If that co-operation is removed and fear no longer inspires compliance, the wheels cease turning and the system may well collapse. The rulers consistently need to impress their own necessity and brilliance into the minds of the population in order to maintain respect. In the end most power is simply artful deception that would crumble if the people actually realised their combined strength. As a leader it is better to be loved than feared, but instilling awe into the hearts of one’s subjects will do the trick nicely.

Comment on:

OUCH!!!! The image of the red hands grabbed my attention straight away. You built the tension well, but I think you let us off the hook a bit too quickly. You could have kept us guessing a little longer. I was intrigued! Maybe, like me, you try to keep your blogs short, but I would have read more if you dragged it out a little further.

Week 7: Dylan Thomas is spinning me out!

Dylan Thomas’ poem “The Force That Through the Green Fuse Drives the Flower” splits my mind in two and then seems to re-join it with a bizarre revelation; death is life!

I sense that the force he speaks of is both life-force and a force of decay and annihilation:

“The force that through the green fuse drives the flower

Drives my green age; that blasts the roots of trees

Is my destroyer.

And I am dumb to tell the crooked rose

My youth is bent by the same wintry fever.”

The force that creates eventually destroys. Time must move forward and eventually everything will succumb to its ravaging attrition. It is an extraordinary thought that life cannot exist without death. If I were never born I would never know about death. Before I was born was I dead?

That’ll do for now…

Trying to unpack this on my own makes me appreciate the group effort of our tutorials.

Comment on:

That is bizarre!!!! I’m so glad you explained how the poem was created because at first glance I thought I had forgotten how to comprehend the english language. Sometimes it’s great to just play around with the language and not be concerned with making sense. Many people would call this a waste of time and then proceed to stare at a reality show on TV for an hour. A lot of great art comes from experiment and play.

Week 6: “What the hell are you talking about?”

A few weeks ago I woke up on a Saturday morning (no, not after a big night) and recorded this on my phone. I have no idea what it means, but it interests me:

As much an alien, as much a human.

As much a child at play,

As much an old man dying.

To sweat in the cold,

To drink underwater.

To see in the dark,

To love without fear.

I am a dream, I can fly.

I can taste the wind.

I’ve been around once.

I’ll be back again.