17 January 2023

In a postmodern generation that believes truth can be mine or yours, telling the truth and restating old wisdoms can be a revolutionary act.

"The prince across the water is now the world’s most famous truth bender, but he is far from alone. Last Friday, Trevor Noah, the South African comedian and US television presenter, defended the notorious skit in which he asserted there had been a “racist backlash” in Britain when Rishi Sunak became Prime Minister.

Rather than present proof of his claims, or apologise for his error, Noah argued that a joke can only be judged by its intended audience. “I wouldn’t tell a joke about South Africa the same way in South Africa as I would outside South Africa,” he explained. In other words, it mattered not that British people knew his joke to be untrue: he was making the joke for a liberal American audience, who believed it was true....

The intellectual origins of this nonsense go back to the postmodernism of thinkers like Michel Foucault and Jacques Derrida. Discourse is oppressive. Language, custom and tradition exploit the weak and sustain the powerful in their privilege. Victims of the powerful participate in their own oppression through their assumed social roles.

These concepts have been taken further by thinkers and radicals in America, and the arising critical theories are not only commonplace there but increasingly a matter of consensus among academics and politicians here as well.

And so truth is reduced to a battle between discourses. Whatever the evidence, the truth might be said to be merely “your truth”: a story that exploits one group and perpetuates the power of another....

The crime is always exploitation, and the currency is always victimhood because that is what the theories say. The truth must be bent to fit the template, and, handily enough, the theory tells us the truth is malleable anyway."

by Nick Timothy, Theresa May's former Chief of Staff, with an insight he couldn't get his boss to do the foggiest thing about addressing.. in The destruction of truth is at the heart of Western cultural decline  (Daily Telegraph)

Identify for yourself where and how this is seen across academia, the media and in education across NZ... and in the utterances of so many politicians

No comments: