Search This Blog

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Responding is an Art

I'm fascinated how the way meaning is phrased has to do with how it's received. These sorts of choices about exactly the way to write meanings are what continues to challenge and fascinate me as I get better at expressing my thoughts.

For instance, saying, "I am the one who is responsible for myself" certainly would be in keeping with the cultural view of identity. Let's make some observations about meaning from the way this is stated. The direct object takes away the action of responding and turns it into a noun. Perhaps that doesn't express the same meaning that I'd like.

Let's try to come up with a sentence that makes grammatic sense & also communicates. Here are some ways to express similar content:
"I believe that my sense of identity is how I can respond."
Or how about: "The many ways I can respond expresses my unique intent."
Or since choice is implied by the "can" we could say:
" Identity is the choice of response."

...but is identity "only" the choice of response and nothing else? For me it is, but to make this statement implies this is true for everyone - and I wasn't saying that. So to keep it more personal I would prefer the previous definition.

This could be expressed in the social niceties of pleading, "No, allow me! It is my pleasure to offer..."

The first statement using "response-ability" involving a direct object (being responsible to) that implies an action on a "thingification" (answering to our obligation to an identity.) Also the ability to respond "to someone in particular" is implied in the social nicety, which is how it would usually be expressed. Response can be to anything, even an internal conclusion of thought, such as an interpretation of beauty, a fear, or it can be external as a sensory experience or another person, etc.

Instead in the second way of saying it, we're using "is" like an equal sign, which is more in keeping with the nature of the statement: identity
= choosing my own responses.

In a way, learning to write or use any medium to adequately convey my response. Communicating the response or recognition of meaning that I might like to create in the other person is quite a transcendent skill that seems to be never finished. I also believe that the ability to respond using various mediums of expression with the objective of bringing about certain deliberate effects for others is a definition of art.

No comments:

Post a Comment