Students of Philosophy Association, Concordia University

Philosopher’s Zone – Spoilt for choice or spoilt by choice? Renata Salecl

Posted by admin | 2 September 2010 | Comments Off

Renata Salecl

Renata Salecl

In time to provoke some deep thoughts about course selection, a conversation about choice.

Now that Australia has made its choice – sort of – [There was an election in Australia last week - who knew? The result was a minority government - rs] The Philosopher’s Zone looks as the very idea of choice. Much more than previous generations, we can pick and choose where we live, how many children we have or don’t have, what type of bread we would like to eat and even what our gender will be. But the flipside is that that these choices don’t always seem to fulfil us. This week we look at the connections between choice and contemporary capitalism and freedom, and the ideologies that underpin all three.

Bonus!  The Bard gets existential:

To be or not to be– that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles
And, by opposing, end them. To die, to sleep
No more – and by a sleep to say we end
The heartache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to – ‘tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep
To sleep, perchance to dream. Ay, there’s the rub,
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause. There’s the respect
That makes calamity of so long life.
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
Th’ oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s contumely,
The pangs of disprized love, the law’s delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of th’ unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscovered country from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprises of great pitch and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry,
And lose the name of action.—Soft you now!
The fair Ophelia! Nymph, in thy orisons
Be all my sins remembered.


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