Weekly Summary: 21.9.15 – 27.9.15
by Beauchamp Art
The Social Action Day at the UEA provided and interesting initiation into a political polemic at the start of the week, with a few interesting talks including one from the local Norwich South MP Clive Lewis on political involvement after the elections, which featured an interesting discussion on Neoliberalism (which was especially useful given the specific talk on that subject was cancelled). It also gave me the opportunity to observe the level of engagement and general activity within the UEA community that I felt was especially absent whilst at NUA, for the most part. Though I am acutely aware that the appearance of action can be the most effective way of concealing inaction and apathy, but nevertheless saw a sense of earnest enthusiasm amongst the populous.
Nevertheless, the latter half of this week was spent in Scotland, as a retreat from job applications, the anxiety of work/worthlessness in an aggressive Conservative economy and abstaining from art. Naturally, these three concerns were somewhat mirrored in the minds of those whom I was staying with, so the flashbacks of future echoes may have shone their bleak light amongst the clear blue northern skies in conflict with the glimmering golden disc of Helios.
North Berwick may serve as a counterpoint to Norwich in terms of isolationism was curious to ponder in amongst the warm coast and merry household of my visit; with being a graduate severed from the student community, this compared to the family dynamic and how that is stretched nationally and internationally but is still sustained (through modern communication and transport technologies). Both scenarios embody different aspects of the sense of alienation generated by an internal shift of the self in contrast to the other, a dynamism in the dialectic of one within but also in opposition to the collective; in how individuals moving geographically further away may maintain more a sense of inclusivity that those who remain proximate but separate ideologically (in the case of the student graduating, extricating oneself from the individuals and environment one was formally associated with, whilst still near the educational institution one formally inhabited). Perhaps it is the perspective of distance that must be effectively gauged in order to establish an accurate observation on one’s integration into a community; given ‘closeness’ is a relative and unfixed term; so the sense of involvement may be generated through feedback with that group; ie, the rate of communication being a greater means of determining one’s engagement in a collective that any geographic proximity – with the abstract a more accurate means of plotting the social dynamic.
However, this was not troubling me overtly whilst in the Celtic counties, as I was more concerned with the entertaining antics of a poodle and catching up with old friends without personally descending into the mælström of nostalgia. This also gave me the opportunity to draw, take photographs, do a small amount of filming, and whilst on the train starting and finishing Gene Sharp’s From Dictatorship to Democracy and Hannah Arendt On Violence.