A Personal Response To Rosaldo’s Essay Entitled Grief and a Headhunter’s Rage
In the beginning of his essay Rosaldo describes the essay as his attempt to discuss the appropriate way to talk about the cultural force of emotions. On the first page he states that: The emotional force of a death, for example, derives less from an abstract brute fact than from a particular intimate relation’s permanent rupture. It refers to the kinds of feelings one experiences on learning, for example, that the child just run over by a car is one’s own and not a stranger’s. Rathder than speaking of death in general, one must consider the subject’s position within a field of social relations in order to grasp one’s emotional experience. When thinking about emotional force, I automatically think of what the great Jedi master Obi-Wan (Ben) Kenobi once said about the Force: It's an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us, penetrates us, and binds the galaxy together. (Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope) Emotional force works in much the same way, events can bind us together, especially either tragic or extremely happy moments.
I believe that what Rosaldo is trying to saying here is that the more direct your connection to an event, the more it penetrates you. In this essay I will try to prove this theory through a variety of experiences.
One of the most immediate examples of an event causing an upheaval of emotional force is the events of September 11th, 2001. On that date, the nation of the United States of America experienced a horrific tragedy, the likes of which the younger generations had never seen, and even for the older generations, it had more of an impact than even December 7th, the attack on Pearl Harbor, a day that as Roosevelt said “will live in infamy.” The major reason why was the fact that it was an attack on an entirely civilian , “target.” After this event we saw an extreme outpouring of emotion and patriotism. This outpouring of grief, anger...
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