luka

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Lee Fang

One rhetorical trend on the left is using the term “structural” for everything, often for problems that are just interpersonal or anecdotal. The word is rapidly losing meaning.

Jamie McCallum

No, there’s a growing recognition on the left that systems of oppression are more usefully described as structural than interpersonal. This is a good thing. In fact, accusations of interpersonal racism still dominate the way we think about racism. Which is not good.

ManTheStateAndVore

There is no recognition, precisely the opposite. Leftists use "structural" as a buzzword to rationalize a praxis focused entirely on personal and group psychic purification. "Structural bigotry" = "pervasive sorcery", actual material analysis of structures is ignored.
 

luka

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'structural' is a word i've never heard used by an intelligent person. speaking for myself. it's always a word which stands in for thought. which occupies the place thinking should take up.
 

luka

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Staff member
as soon as i hear someone say the word 'structural' i know for a fact they're blagging and i ignore everything they say from that point on.
 

Leo

Well-known member
I just sat through a demo by this company, who pitched this training session for a client: https://www.factualitythegame.com

all the client wanted was a little perfunctory anti-racism training so they could tick their "inclusion & diversity initiatives" box, and here these guys are preaching structural inequality!
 

john eden

male pale and stale
Yer Neoliberalism encourages the idea that everyone is a free spirited individual who has Choices. Some people make good Choices and some people make bad Choices.

Some people choose to be racist and some people choose to be poor.
 

john eden

male pale and stale
More black kids being stop and searched by the cops than ever before during the lockdown? Bad Choices.
 

john eden

male pale and stale
Jacob Rees Mogg raking in huge profits in his investment portfolio during the financial crisis? Good Choices.
 
Yes it’s overused but good. it's like that advertising maxim about when you start getting bored of the message, that's when it's getting through. like john points out, and has pointed out across a few discussions on cancellations and other things. personal blame, ad hominem etc is the default, encouraged position and is difficult to overcome

I’m getting even more bored (and guilty of it myself) of the first guy on about words losing all meaning!

Buzzword accusations are equally boring and easy, buzzcriticisms.' actual material analysis of structures is ignored' is it? whos he talking about? nobody cares about marx now?

I agree with the socialist
 

luka

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Can always rely on Mr Eden to roll out the company line. And I don't disagree I just I don't think anyone knows what a structure is other than in the fuck the system sense.
 

luka

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In that sense it's a completely meaningless abstraction that stands in for comprehension. A vague sense of an evil sausage factory blurting foul black clouds into the sky.
 
well yeah exactly, it forces you (if you actually want to comprehend) to get out of monkey responses and start to think about systems, which is always complex and difficult and involves abstraction, modelling, simplifications, probabilities
 

luka

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Staff member
well yeah exactly, it forces you (if you actually want to comprehend) to get out of monkey responses and start to think about systems, which is always complex and difficult and involves abstraction, modelling, simplifications, probabilities
I'm arguing that it does precisely the opposite. That it fills the space where that thinking would otherwise happen.
 
My disgust response is really strong with language too as you know, template craic etc. In labour whatsapp groups I was often REPULSED. but what is the part of me that is so repulsed and why?
 

luka

Well-known member
Staff member
I don't know? This thread is an invitation to answer that question and also work out what 'structural' might mean beyond 'evil sausage factory.' I want to rescue it.
 

john eden

male pale and stale
I'm arguing that it does precisely the opposite. That it fills the space where that thinking would otherwise happen.
I think it can do that but that some people are putting in a fair bit of effort to try and understand what the system is, how it operates and where it is going.

And how it could be changed.
 
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