#11: Clock time and oppression
Plus the seven factors we use to choose friends. The characteristics of white supremacy culture.
You’re reading This Might Resonate, a fortnightly newsletter from me, Emily. If you like this sort of thing, you can subscribe here.
Links only this week. An ill-advised bike ride plus vaccinated socialising has left me with but a small pocket of energy for newsletter-writing. Thoughts percolating for future editions: what it means to pay attention, Yin Yoga as a disability justice practice, liberation and adult development, pace layers of the body-mind, what the Romantic poets can teach us about transformation.
Reading + watching
This brilliant article about how “clock time” polices us and reinforces oppression: “The more we synchronize ourselves with the time in clocks, the more we fall out of sync with our own bodies and the world around us”. It reminds me of 24/7 at Somerset House, one of my all-time favourite exhibitions.
Tema Okun’s new website that updates her work on the characteristics of white supremacy culture: Fear, One Right Way, Either/Or & The Binary, Denial & Defensiveness, Right to Comfort & Fear of Conflict, Individualism, Progress is More & Quantity over Quality, Worship of the Written Word, Urgency. The characteristics are one of my favourite org design resources; you may recognise them from environments such as: most UK workplaces.
This in-depth interview with evolutionary psychologist Robin Dunbar, creator of the Dunbar number (we can cognitively maintain 150 stable relationships at any given time). Interesting nuggets from Dunbar’s new book, including the seven factors we use to evaluate whether someone has the potential to become a friend.
Head in the Sand. “All around us, humanity. Black Muslims, Arab Muslims, Southeast Asian Muslims, White Muslims, old and young, fathers and their children, in full cultural dress, in their Chicken Express uniforms, all of us in our socks on the plush red carpet as the kids run and laugh between our bodies, oblivious to the solemnity or else, enacting their own kind of prayer, if joy can be said to be holy”.
The climate crisis requires a new culture and politics, not just new tech. “Changing the collective mindset of a civilisation calls for a shift in values. It means educating our children about humility and connectedness, rather than vanity and individuality”.
Upon viewing this clip of Matt Hancock, I became nostalgic for series three of The Thick of It, when a psychotic Government spin-doctor is ejected from power, becoming a freelance agent of chaos (cf Cummings’ Substack). It turns out that watching middle-aged white men scream relentless obscenities is extremely stressful. Watch Armando Iannucci’s Veep instead — just as brilliant, and slightly less blood pressure-raising.
Most popular links from the last edition
Bo Burnham’s Inside special. Nice to see my thoughts chime with Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett’s piece about being suddenly hungry for pandemic art