Saturday, May 9, 2015

Joel Alvarado
May 9, 2015

Assignment Due 5/9: Choose a passage from "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction," write out the passage, explain what it means and why you chose it.

Language is the embodiment of experience and tradition; as long as the ability to think rests on language, neither ‘reason’ nor ‘philosophy’ can be pure of the empirical, of experience, and of the experience of the others to whom we relate. It itself is a ‘union of opposites,’ of the aesthetic and the logical, the bodily and the intellectual; it unites the division Kant’s Critique creates (Dickson ibid).

In his writing Hamann, speaks about language and the role it plays on human society. He argues that before we understand the concept of language we need to understand the difference between the intellectual part of it and the linguistic part of it. Even though people might perceive it as being the same, he argues that it requires a higher level of thinking in order to understand and being able to separate the both. He also mentioned that many times language is used to express intelligence and wisdom, but it does not come from tradition nor philosophy, instead it comes from the experiences of that individual. He also mentions that both the linguistic and intellectual aspect of it are connected but are undeniably opposites. 
I personally believe that he was trying to imply that many individuals perceive language as just being a tool that humans use to communicate. He argues that it is much more than that, he clearly explains that language shows one's intellectual capacity and the level of sophistication that they posses.

I chose this passage because I agree with Hannan and his perspective about language. Everyone knows that language is mostly used to express the tongues that they know and express many of their traditions.  I also believe that language can be totally free of meaning, it can sometimes be abstract and utilized to imply other things such as a feelings or rational thought. Language is not only spoken words, it can also come in other forms such as writing and expressions. I believe that language has had a tremendous impact on humanity because it has changed many aspects of human life. Language has allowed humanity to evolve and dominate in everything we do, from recordings in history to the way that the present is shaped.  Another reason why I choose this passage is because language is in many places that we take for granted, for example, it is the key that allows technology to function the way it does. This is why I agree with Hamann when he implied that language is much more than linguistics that expresses things we want to imply.



Saturday, May 2, 2015

Joel Alvarado
LEH 355

                                                            Ernst Jünger

Assignment Due 5/2: Choose a passage from Jünger, write it out, explain the meaning of it, and why you chose this passage.

"We  find ourselves in a situation where we are still capable of grasping what is lost; we can still sense the destruction of values and how the world is becoming more shallow and superficial. New generations are growing up far removed from all our inherited traditions, and it is an amazing feeling to see these children many of whom will live to experience the year 2000. By then, the last remnants of the modern, i.e., Copernican, age will most likely have disappeared (p. 45)."

In that particular section of his writings, Jünger was stating that it was not too late to regain what was lost. With that statement, he was implying that a lot of the traditions, cultures, morals, and values were being lost because of the politics and the technological advances.When he implies that the world was becoming more shallow and superficial he was referring to technology and how it had a tremendous impact on society because it was revolutionizing humanity, as they knew it. Jünger was also arguing that a lot of people were speculating that technology was bringing about plenty of positive things such as wealth and advancements in communication. From a militaristic standpoint, Jüngert knew it was not all positivity because many innovations were going to bring about nothing but destruction.
In the next part of the text, Jünger empathized with many of the societies speculations regarding technology, he mentioned that it was a great feeling to see the new generation reach the year 2000. I personally believe that he knew and understood that technology was benefiting many fields such as the medical world.
The reason why I chose this particular passage is because Jünger was a great writer and philosopher that was really good in communicating what he felt. In his writing he explained that humanity was heading in a positive direction but it had its perks. I found it highly fascinating to learn how in addition to his militaristic experience he was offered many positions in the Nazi regime but he refused to be a part of it. This portion of his writing highlighted the fact that even though he was a high military figure, he had a sense of empathy towards the future and he was concerned about the direction that society was moving towards.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Joel Alvarado
LEH 355

Whoever wants to engage in politics at all, and especially in politics as a vocation, has to realize these ethical paradoxes. He must know that he is responsible for what he may become of himself under the impact of these paradoxes. I repeat, he lets himself in for the diabolic forces lurking in all violence. The great virtuosi of acosmic love of humanity and goodness whether stemming from Nazareth or Assisi or from Indian royal castles, have not operated with the political means of violence. Their kingdom was ‘not of this world’ and yet they worked and still work in this world. The figures of Platon Karatajev and the saints of Dostoievski still remain their most adequate reconstructions. He who seeks the salvation of the soul of his own and of others, should not seek it along the avenue of politics, for the quite different tasks of politics can only be solved by violence [italics added]. The genius or demon of politics lives in an inner tension with the god of love, as well as with the Christian God as expressed by the church. This tension can at any time lead to an irreconcilable conflict. (pp. 125-26)

I personally believe that Weber was trying to imply that politics is a highly complex practice that is utilized to influence others. He is implying that that it can be highly effective when combined with religion because it strengthens the believe behind it.  Weber also talks about how politics is influenced by religion, culture, and socialism. Many things can influence politicians to argue different perspectives but the most influential drive that influences politicians is the economics. In the beginning of the expert, he talks about how some individuals might underestimate the intense nature of politics, the start pursuing the practice with an unclear understanding and end up suffering greatly. Weber clearly states that the nature of politics requires its followers to crush the opponent without even feeling an ounce of sympathy or empathy. Lastly he talks about religion and from my understanding, it is referring to the famous prosing work ethic implies that capitalism and Christianity are highly similar.

The main reason why I chose this particular article was because I feel like people should know the intensity politics. A lot of congressman and individuals pursue the art of politics but do not realize that it could literally ruin their lives. There have been many occasions where two politicians battle each other in a political race for office and end up ruining their image. When opposite parties clash and it ended then she will raise in a candidates you raised they reveal all of each other secrets and in many cases those secrets and the end of ruining their career.

Another important aspect that Weber discusses that caught my attention was when he implied that many political parties utilize religion to grasp the public's attention. They set a specific target of people and use some tactics used in religion to gain votes. Although it was not directly implied, many politicians compare capitalism with religion to deliver their discussion. Many individuals state that in the capitalist world, anyone that works hard can be successful and in many religious believes, it is said that if a person is a hard worker, then he/she will be entitled to many great things


Saturday, March 28, 2015

Joel Alvarado
LEH 355
                                                           Weimar Constitution

First Chapter : the Reich and the States

Article 1
The German Reich is a republic.
State authority derives from the people.

Article 2
State territory of the Reich is composed of the territories of the German states.
Other areas may be included in the Reich, if their population desires in exercise of its right of self-determination.

Article 3
The Reich colours are black-red-golden. The merchant flag is black-white-red, with the Reich colours in the upper, inner corner.

Article 4
The generally recognised rules of international law are valid as binding elements of German Reich law

The first article in the first chapter is talking about the introduction of a new form of government where the republic system allows the people to govern themselves with limited government power. This new form of government was supposed to replace the imperialistic form of government that Germany was under.

The second article states that the Republic is divided amongst German states, that particular section of the constitution allowed the other places around the states to also practice the democratic form of government.The third article simply speaks about the colors and design of the flag, it was a form of letting everyone know the republic’s logo so that there was no confusion. The 4th and 5th article of the Constitution stated that all of the decisions being made by the government have to follow the major supreme order of the Constitution.

 The reason why I chose that particular section is because it highlights many of our own constitution guidelines. The United States is also a democratic system that is governed by the three branches of government chosen by the people. In addition, the constitution itself allowed for balance and stability of this country.

Basic rights and obligations of the Germans

First Chapter : The Individual
Article 109
All Germans are equal in front of the law.
In principle, men and women have the same rights and obligations.
Legal privileges or disadvantages based on birth or social standing are to be abolished.
Noble titles form part of the name only; noble titles may not be granted any more.
Titles may only be granted, if they indicate an office or occupation; academic degrees are not affected by this regulation.
The state may no more bestow orders and medals.
No German may accept titles or orders from a foreign government. 

Article 110
Nationality in the Reich and in the states is acquired and lost according to the specifications of a Reich law. Every state national simultaneously is Reich national.
Every German, in every state, enjoys the same rights and obligations as the respective state nationals.

Article 111
All Germans enjoy freedom to move and settle down. Everybody is entitled to stay and settle anywhere within the Reich, to acquire property and to pursue his trade. Limitations require a Reich law.

In this particular section, the Constitution states that all Germans are equal in front of the law, regardless of their genre. It also states that males and females have the same rights and obligations under the German republic. can be given a title like theMonica system is strictly says that no Herman can accept order s from any other government

This section of the constitution was highly important because it was intended to serve the right that Germans had because of their citizenship. It strictly prohibited them from following directions from other governments. This particular sense of belonging shaped the popular “German pride”.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Joel Alvarado
LEH 355

                                                Luxemburg and Imperialism

When referring to the term “imperialism”, Luxemburg had a political perspective that can be viewed differently by many individuals. Lenin refers to this term as an alternative to a democratic system which allows the splitting of power. He also believed that the political spectrum should be practiced under imperialism as oppose to the splitting of powers that the democratic system offers. Luxemburg extends this believe and suggest that the finances from other places in the world depend on imperialism. In his passage he stated that it was highly important for the economic development of other countries.
Luxemburg believed that in order to expand the market and extract larger profits and expands industrialization to create and enhance the economic development of other countries, imperialism was the answer. He supposed that in order to successfully expand their businesses, capitalist needed to think larger than just having their business in local places. Through his ideals, he encouraged many capitalist to invest in third-world countries that had yet to experience an economic boom. That was his personal judgment on how the world was going to transform into a more industrialize and technological advanced place.
I personally agree with the fact that some places need industrialization to a certain extent, I believe that if capitalist are going to expand their businesses to other places of the world they must also include them in the profit margins, sort of like a business partner. History has shown us that genocides occur when capitalist step in and imperialize other countries. History has shown us that when imperialism occurs, millions of people end up enslaved by the oppressor and natural resources end up being exploited. In his passage, Luxemburg states that “ it transforms the entire world into the capitalist mode of production; all outmoded, pre-capitalist forms of production and society are swept away; it converts all the world’s riches and means of production into capital” (Luxemburg). He believed that in order for the economic boom to take place, capitalist must take advantage of the world's richest.
 I personally believe that he knew that it was going to be easy for capitalist to use his believe to convince others to think that imperialism is a form of economic growth. His interpretations of this believe would take this into consideration and easily imperialize certain places. Even in today’s society, political leaders are being judged as imperialist. There are lot of individuals that claim and state that the war against the Middle East against the United States have a lot to do with the fact that there are plenty of natural resources that the United States could benefit from such as oil. Some people say that the fight against terror is just an excuse that the US used in order to go into those countries and take advantage of their natural resources. Although imperialism and dictatorship is being eradicated around the world, we still see it in many shapes and forms

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Joel Alvarado
LEH 355

One of the most of impressive scenes from the movie “M” was when Beckett was taken to the kangaroo court, when he was forced into the basement like room he saw a large group of people that were going to witness his verdict. There were also a couple of judges in front of the crowd that were getting ready to sentence him. When Beckett felt the intensity and the atmosphere of the room he automatically went into defensive mode and he was acting like he did not have anything to do with being there. It wasn't until the blind guy confirmed that he was indeed the criminal that he confirmed that the people had caught up to his crimes. As he went into the defensive mode the judges pulled up a couple of pictures of the victims that he had murdered. When he saw the faces of the young girls he tried he went got surprised and he tried to flee but the people in the room did not let him escape.
Prior to sentencing him, he was assigned a lawyer but he was on denial; stating that he did not want to lawyer because he believed he was innocent. When he saw that the crowd was not being receptive to his demands, he insisted to be handed over to the police. Afterwards, he started confessing his disorders and he prosecuted himself. One of the reasons why I found this scene appealing was because it was highly ironic how a criminal tries to beg for help committing unforgivable crimes. It is as if he does not understand the intensity of the crimes he committed. Another important factor that made this scene outstanding was the fact that people decided to take matters into their own hands. I completely agree with a group of people doing so because there are many occasions where we let the government or the judicial system handle certain things under the assumption that they will deliver according but the decision is not fair at all. The fact that these people decided to put their own judicial system together implies that they care about their city and are willing to make a change for the better. Lastly, it would have been interesting to see how the group of individuals was going to punish the criminal if the police had not intervened.
This movie reflects a lot of the instability that was occurring in Germany in the era. The fact that the government was unstable and people were taking matters into their own hands speaks a lot about a society’s instability. Another major issue that was occurring in that particular time was that people were letting their desires overpower them. We saw how desire overpowered the professor in The Blue Angel and ultimately ruined his life, just like the desire of murdering ruined Beckett’s life in this film. Another major distress is that just like the film “ The Cabinet”, they were there were a lot of impression misconceptions that were placed on certain individuals. In “The Cabinet”, the murderer faked to be sleeping while in reality he was out killing people. The outcome of his crimes did not fit the description because he was an important member in society, that goes to show the misconception people had on others

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Joel Alvarado
March 7, 2015
LEH 355

No Time" (Keine Zeit), music by Rudolf Nelson, lyrics by Herbert Nelson
Nowadays, a person doesn't have a second to spare.
Yet many even think the pace is too slow.
If you do business today, you go bankrupt before you have even started.
People don't want to waste time with the beginning,
they'd rather skip straight to the end.
In this day and age, you fall in love in the evening, are engaged at night,
and get married the next morning.
At noon you have a fight; by night you're divorced.
In negotiations between countries, before a treaty is evened signed,
it's already broken.
Because nowadays it is considered chic to be quick.

Man laesst sich weit und breit heut nicht mehr Sekunde Zeit heut.
Es geht im Gegenteil uns noch zu langsam fast.
Machst du Geschaefte heute, bist du bereits schon pleite, bevor du ueberhaupt noch angefangen hast.
Man moecht am liebsten, ja das soll’s geben, das Ende noch vor Beginne leben.
Heut verliebt man sich abends, verlobt sich bei Nacht und vermaehlt in der Frueh sich zufriede und am Mittag da hat man bereits sich verkracht und am Abend ist man wieder geschieden.

This particular song implies that in the early 1920’s, everything was fast paced and people were always in a rush. The artist felt like society did not take the time to appreciate the important things that really mattered. The artist also felt like the economy was impacted tremendously negative, therefore he felt like even the banks were not reliable. To reinforce that thought, he stated that the society was going at such a tremendous rate that people not take the time to get to know each other and some parts of his song, it is conveyed that people are getting engaged and married in one day and then divorce and separate the next day. This also expresses how the artist felt in regards to a society not having a good sense of organization.

"It's All a Swindle" (Alles Schwindel), by Mischa Spoliansky and Marcellus Schiffer (1931)

Papa swindles
Mama swindles
Grandmama's a lying thief
We're perfectly shameless
but we're blameless
after all it's our belief
Nowadays the world is rotten
honesty has been forgotten
fall in love but after kissing --
check your purse to see what's missing
Everyone swindles some
my son's a mooch and so's the pooch

Papa schwindelt,
Mama schwindelt,
tut sie auf blob ihren Mund!
Tante Otilie,
und die Familie
und sogar der kleine Hund!
Und besieht man’s aus der Nähe:
Jedes Band und jede Ehe
jeder Kub in dern Betriebe
und sogar die grobe Liebe!
Und die ganze heut’ge Zeit ja,
sogar die Ehrlichkeit!

This particular song, "It's All a Swindle" was stating that everyone was a liar and a thief including her family members. She felt like nobody was trust trustworthy, she also feels like of everybody has become selfish and only cared about him or her. In her song, she implies that her mother cheats and steals, her father cheats and everybody around her was a lying and cheating their way through. I believe that she had a traumatic experience growing up, she probably saw much corruption; therefore, she is unable to trust and believe in anyone. She also states that there is no shame in doing what these people were doing and that it was perfectly normal to encounter those behaviors. Another important aspect of the song was that love was highly unusual and that there was no trust. She also stated that the once a person finished being with their partner, they had to check their purses to make sure nothing is missing. I personally believe that there was a high level of uncertainty amongst society, and that people were not really concerned with feelings or emotions.

paragraph 175
A national prohibition, Paragraph 175, was added to the Reich Penal Code in 1871. It read:1

"An unnatural sex act committed between persons of male sex or by humans with animals is punishable by imprisonment; the loss of civil rights might also be imposed."
When the Nazi's came to power in 1933, they put a halt to efforts seeking reform of this law. In 1935, after the murder of Ernst Roem, the NSDAP amended the Paragraph 175 to close what were seen as loopholes in the current law.

The new law had three parts:

Paragraph 175:
"A male who commits a sex offense with another male or allows himself to be used by another male for a sex offense shall be punished with imprisonment. Where a party was not yet twenty-one years of age at the time of the act, the court may in especially minor cases refrain from punishment."
Paragraph 175a:
"Penal servitude up to 10 years or, where there are mitigating circumstances, imprisonment of not less than three months shall apply to: (1) a male who, with violence or the threat of violence to body and soul or life, compels another male to commit a sex offense with him or to allow himself to be abused for a sex offense; (2) a male who, by abusing a relationship of dependence based upon service, employment or subordination, induces another male to commit a sex offense with him or to allow himself to be abused for a sex offense; (3) a male over 21 years of age who seduces a male person under twenty-one years to commit a sex offense with him or to allow himself to be abused for a sex offense; (4) a male who publicly commits a sex offense with males or allows himself to be abused by males for a sex offense or offers himself for the same."
Paragraph 175b:
"An unnatural sex act committed by humans with animals is punishable by imprisonment; the loss of civil rights might also be imposed."
Paragraph 175 is a criminal code that incriminates those men who perform sexual behaviors amongst each other. This law incarcerated thousands of men that practice this odd behavior. The Nazi regime executed many of these individuals during the Holocaust. Understanding the importance of paragraph 175 during that time was important because the lives of those that was an important A necessity coma the reason why I stayed is because it targeted many innocent individuals. I believe that stripping the civil rights of many of those individuals was another difficult circumstance of the people were living in that era. Society was very unjust and because of that, many innocent citizens were being targeted because of their sexual preference. The conditions of government intervention with society were very high in that time because the society was being controlled and manipulated by the government.