Saturday, February 4, 2017

Patrick Camarador - Week 5

This week's piece, "Nothing Ever Dies" by Viet Than Nguyen, a Vietnamese American novelist, has a very distinct theme of duality. 'Light sides' and 'dark sides' can be seen with each issue brought up, ranging from Korea's rise to a subimperial power to the relationships between Vietnamese American writers and the countries they write about. Syria once again comes to mind when talking about the parallels of refugee relations brought up in this piece. Those who have received asylum have limited ways to voice concerns without compromising already restrictive policies that threaten to keep their countrymen out.

What kind of trade-offs or sacrifices must be made such that one is made to be stronger than the other? - Image from shared under Creative Commons License
In Nguyen's work, he works with his theme of duality to bring to attention constantly unstable equilibria. Work can be done to suppress one side of a narrative, or to forget painful memories, but it is never possible to completely erase one side. Though times may make it such that the virtuous side dominates the other, all it takes is a gradual undermining to reveal shades of the cruelty hiding within dormant corners of an entity. Of course, this 'gradual undermining' is no stranger to difficulty, and is partially why I took a while past the deadline to post this entry while thinking about these hardships. Grappling with oppression or restrictions to expose, support, or suppress another side takes considerable effort, which begs my question: Just how much are people willing to sacrifice for the sake of creating (or perpetuating, or even suppressing) one cause, or one faction, or one narrative? For a lot of people, the ends justify the means, but the means seem to always leave a mess that they somehow end up cleaning up afterward. I would think that the messes are not worth creating, but human imperfection seems to always find a way to make all equilibria unstable, one mistake at a time.

- Patrick Camarador

No comments:

Post a Comment