Monday, July 10, 2017

Cultural Appropriation

According to Misao Dean, Professor of English at the University of Victoria, the canoe can be a symbol of colonialism, imperialism and genocide. She also accused canoers of "cultural appropriation" because they are primarily white men and have a privileged place in society.

Susan Scafidi, a law professor at Fordham University who has written a book on the subject(!),  defines cultural appropriation as “taking intellectual property, traditional knowledge, cultural expressions, or artifacts from someone else’s culture without permission. This can include unauthorized use of another culture’s dance, dress, music, language, folklore, cuisine, traditional medicine, religious symbols, etc.”

Lionel Shiver got into heaps of trouble defending such activity as the core of fiction writing. But the Progressive knows the present is the knowing past impurely refined. The dialectic must be cruel to be kind.

As these "leaders" force history to its logical conclusions, what are we poor humans to hold in common? How many of these divisive fissures these people try to create with their wedges and axes are we supposed to accept with understanding and tolerance? And why are these "leaders" surprised when groups become isolated and separate when these "thought leaders" specifically ask them to be so? If canoes, sombreros and rap are, essentially, genetically patented, where is an expropriating European to turn on a lake, in the sun, wanting a song?
Perhaps we should start at the heart of the Progressive's discontent, the internal combustion engine. Maybe the Europeans should simply give up, pick up their toys so universally appropriated, and go home.

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