Emerson vs Swimme

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Marc-Eli Gabriel
HMXP
5-22-2013
Paper
Emerson vs. Swimme
This paper is going to examine the writings of Self Reliance and How Do Our Kids Get So Caught up in Consumerism. Self reliance is from Emerson, and is basically addressing the reader in terms that people need to be authentic and it’s all about how people should be themselves. “How do our kids get so caught up in consumerism,” is writing from Brian Swimme, which explains how kids get caught up in the world of consumerism and how it affects them. In this examination of these two writings the main points, and how they are alike and dislike will be compared and analyzed at a deeper thought. In order to explain how we can learn from these writings and so what. The major points established in the readings are based on the by Emerson and Swimme. In self reliance, Emerson talks on the fact of how we as a society, fail to recognize the chains (norms) that bind our mind and behaviors. Also in the reading, he explains that there is no authenticity in this world. In Swimme`s reading he’s answering the essential question of “How do our kids get so caught up in Consumerism.” Swimme`s major points are that society doesn’t realize how much advertisements and consumerism influences kids, and culture in general. Another point he makes, is that the world of advertising/consumerism has interfered with the moral and spiritual development of kids. This eventually causes kids who aren’t recalcitrant too accept consumerisms basic worldview as their cosmology. These two readings are different but actually are a lot alike. There are three reasons of how these two readings are in common with each other. The first reason, is the idea that kids and our culture have no authenticity because of the chains that society uses to conform them with. In self reliance Emerson states “Their mind being is whole, their eye is as yet unconquered…Infancy conforms to nobody” (Emerson 89). This is basically saying that a child has an authentic mind, because it has yet been conformed by the chains of society. In Swimme’s reading, Swimme states “It is just too horrible to think that we live in a culture that has replaced authentic spiritual development with the advertisements crass materialism” (Swimme 156). So what Swimme means by saying this, is that crass materialism has replaced authentic development in our culture. As you can see the themes of these readings in terms of authenticity obviously match up, and are alike on the topic that authenticity is there but is affected by chains brought on by society. Second reason why these readings are alike, is that they both talk about the ways and how the world shuns nonconformity. Emerson in self reliance said “For nonconformity the world whips you out with displeasure” (Emerson 90). This line means that the world casts out nonconformist with displeasure because it shuns nonconformity. In Swimme’s reading he states that “advertisements determine the sort of shoes our children desire, the sorts of clothes and toys and games and sugar cereals that they must have…unhappiness that in many cases leads to aggressive violence…to obtain by force that which …parents will not or cannot give them” (Swimme 156). This passage is explaining the point, that materialism brought by these advertisements really mess with our kids, and cause them to lash out to get what they want. It could even lead to in groups and out groups in a school setting. This causes things such as bullying because someone isn’t following the trend therefore he or she isn’t a nonconformist. Third reason is that the authors are actually talking to us in deeper thought; it is not just about consumerism, or just about morals and traditions affecting our authenticity and etc. What essentially should be brought to the reader’s attention, is that these two authors are explaining, more or less showing us how we fail as individuals to recognize the chains of society that bind our mind and behaviors which is a...
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