The Deeper Bonds of Love

Domination; the state of being in control. Jessica Benjamin expresses domination a lot; she calls it “a twisting of the bonds of love.” She emphasizes that domination starts between yourself and others. And that there’s a psychological destruction within the desire for recognition. Benjamin states that to recognize the heaviness of psychological destruction it has to start with parent and child. That’s where domination kicks in, whether if it’s the child that has dominion over the parent, if they want that special toy, they kick and scream just to get it. Or if the parent has control over the child, by always telling them what to do. Benjamin believes that’s a bond of power and powerlessness. Where you can’t just have good and not evil, but both.

Benjamin’s and Sigmund Freud’s similarity are pertaining to Parent and Child. Well in Freud’s case Father and Son. Which, Benjamin argues, is not fair to leave women out of his subjectivity. So she uses a psychoanalysis theory to show that feminism and masculinity are a new problem of domination along with parent and child. Benjamin mentions this because of how they play a part in Psychoanalysis theory. When we have both feminism and masculinity, it opens up many possibilities for Men and Women to confront the difficulties and recover an idea of interconnection.

Benjamin’s idea of life, can open our own thoughts and connections to the psychoanalysis theory she was explaining about. Like how it’s okay to have masculine features in women or vice-versa for men. And just to dive deeper in the explanations of how she talks about the bond between parent and child, and how sometimes it is rough, especially when you both want to be right, but you know, that’s not fair on all engagements. When reading “The Bonds of Love” we can deeper relate to what Benjamin is talking about and how it has a role on us and the world.

Orientalism Within India and the World.

The orientalist view is very interesting to me, particularly how it affects the same people that the view is based on. Obviously there has been a false interpretation of South Asia and the Middle East conveyed to the western world that changes the way we perceive those areas, but that false interpretation also seems to affect the people who are the object of the orientalist view. This stems from the earliest form of British colonization in India and other parts of the orient.

This concept is illustrated very well by Roy’s ” God of Small Things” with the family because they are Indian, but they have British ties. Typically, we think about the orientalist view exclusively from the perspective of the western world, but we rarely think about how this view has affected the way Indian people view their relationship with Britain and the rest of the west. From the way it is portrayed in GOST, it seems like the British superiority view is perpetuated by the Indian people themselves. Because they have been conditioned to do things the western way when they were colonized so long ago, some are still set in these ways. An example of this is explicitly touched upon by Mammachi and Baby Kochamma. Both are Syrian-Christian, which is completely influenced by British missions and imperialism, and seem to cherish western values over traditional Indian ones. They encourage Ammu to marry a British person and forbid her from being with a touchable. The influence of British colonialism is so deeply rooted in India’s current culture and government, that it has even convinced the people at the bottom of the caste system that that is how it should be.

Orientalism is a word to describes a specific instance in history when colonialism affected the way the entire world views a specific place. However, the concept can be applied in a lot of different instances. It shows how we view any place that we have heard about, but are limited to our presumptions and internalized stereotypes. To me, a privileged person living in an an upper-middle class neighborhood, I have somewhat of an orientalist view on neighborhoods in Chicago that I’ve been told to avoid. I hear of stereotypes and less than credible stories to paint a picture in my head of what it is like, but to someone who lives there it might be completely wrong or distorted. I think it is important get a full story on something before you make judgments about it, and also try to be understanding of how systems of power can change the way we perceive others and how we perceive ourselves.