Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Dangers of Self-Expression

Nowadays, it seems the Thing To Do is express yourself. Well...it's been that way for a while, and I also feel like an Old Fogey for using the word "nowadays". Be that as it may, self-expression is the new self-reliance, which is interesting because Emerson sort of propounded self-expression as an outworking of self-reliance.

Self-expression is now, in fact, a measure of quality. Critics still look at absolute or even relative aesthetic standards when critiquing media, but the question, "Is it real self-expression?" is rapidly overtaking other standards as THE unassailable measure of quality.

If someone doesn't truly express what they're feeling, they're ridiculed as wearing masks. If they do bare their (sometimes hideous) selves, they're lauded for bravery and amazingness, even if what they do express is despicable and disturbing.

I don't know what I'm trying to say here. I guess my point is that sometimes, I don't want to see people express themselves fully and intimately.

Long live meandering!

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