Wednesday, 27 June 2012
in anthro class today we had a guest speaker whose name is marvin k. white.
he wasn't white at all, that was what i thought.
he says he writes so that his story will not be left up to someone else. "i write and create everything.. we make art just to say we are here, we are creating. when we meet someone else, we show up with stories, we don't show up empty." his writing, he says, is more like an invitation. an invitation to write and tell your story. not to tell you who you are, but to ASK you who you are.
we got his opinion on gay marriage because aida sarcon, this really smart enthusiastic graduate from my class (it's ~upper division, so it's difficult and there are grad students in my class taking this) asked him to clarify something he wrote in one of his books we were made to read
to be honest i only read half of it yesterday and thought to myself "woah here are a lot of stories!!!!"
personally, on gay marriage, he wants us to realise that getting married in a church is a ceremony while the legal documents produced by the state are what determine you are married or not. he asks, "what if i don't even want marriage?" to me, marriage seems to be a social institution (goodness, everything is 'socially constructed') that dispenses rights. to him, marriage is a normal, and to him, marriage is not HIS normal. he says love, love is his normal. women-led households, the kinships he feels- those are his normal. he frowns and then looks up to the ceiling. asked us- aren't you concerned with who sets the normal? everyone else is a contradiction to THAT NORMAL. marriage.. a man and a woman. a man says, "you have my name, you belong to me now. THAT is a contract! THAT makes you less of a person (female) than you are."
michael asks "doesn't the contract (marriage) limit your ability to take care of your partner? you speak of Love and Trust and Community but this contract- it limits you." marvin stopped for awhile and thought about it, tells us he is "working through it" before saying this, "we will do anything we can, we will be ANYBODY who we need to be at THAT moment, to be able to take care of someone. i don't want the legality to limit my capability to take care of each other."
he said something i really liked. "i want you to read me in terms of relationship with this person, and that person." he echoes what my best friend always says, "show me your friends and i will show you your future." we spend so much of our time with ourselves and with other selves that th relationships we have with another person forcefully determines who ~we are, especially on cyberspace. i want to only spend time with people whom i care about, if only to appeal to someone else as sincere. i dont feel as independent as i do when i think about myself in relation to someone else. what is it about beatrice when she devotes her time and energy to her, to him, to them. and do i accept that judgement when it is not what i deem legitimate and if i dont or do, what does it say about me
adding this because it made sense for awhile: language kind of made monster the way people were having sex