A Quote by Kenneth Smith on philosophy, marx, kafka, kierkegaard, isolationism, privatism, self-interest, and ego

All cities, all geography, even all art and music and writings and inventions are fastidiously subdivided into parcels of proprietary claims:  all the world, under the virtually theological rule of modern egology (“ego” taken as a ruling principle), is meticulously defined as “mine” versus “thine,” “ours” versus “theirs.”  We use our homes as we use our bodies, as we use our faces and our words as well:  as a mask and a shield, a barrier to exclude others.  Kafka captured the nightmarish dementia of man self-considered as an obscure and obsessive sort of reclusive mole (“The Burrow”), paranoiacally banking up involuted underground labyrinths against the anxiety of being invaded.  Kierkegaard, whom Kafka esteemed, had already written intricate expressions and symptomatologies of an “esthetic” type of personality hellbent on retreating from the public, natural or social domain, living a pathologically secretive life of perverse games and exploitative self-interestedness.  And Marx as well saw the capitalist or bourgeois class in toto as a constitutionally self-concealing and mendacious character-type, doomed always to relate to language and action only as a way of systematically misrepresenting their true purposes and qualities of personality.  The bourgeois world-construct is functionally complete when its underclass has been systematically and intimately hemmed-in by its ideological virtualities, the contrived and projected “false consciousness” in which it has been axiomatically catechized.

Kenneth Smith


Contributed by: Dave

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