UW in the Classroom

Eyes Wide Shut . . .

      Culture = the stories we tell ourselves; they equate to our collective memory (all our music, art, entertainment).  Pop  (short for Popular) Culture, however, works a little differently.  It arises out of a youthful need for identity; at some levels, it’s temporary (because it is based on fashion and trends).  At another level is permanent (every generation has its own popular culture).  In either case, Pop Culture is always shifting and shaping to reflect our values.

     The stories we tell ourselves become part of our Mythos,  the identity a culture gives itself.  With Mythos, we can see the stories we tell ourselves, and the stories we tell often reflect how we like to be percieved.  With Pop Culture, telling those stories are hard to locate because they come from so many different places: Advertising, Marketing, Hollywood, School Hallways, Shopping Malls.  In short, we are constantly in battle with what we own.  What we own shows, in essence, what we want to become.

      But what happens when the questions of our own identity are given to us, rather than coming from within?   Our 2nd Big QuestionWhy Are You Here? — asks us to look at that question; it begs us to look at the world around us, to isolate the factors that are vying for our souls.  In the end, we may not win the battle, but we will have a reasonable response.