Interlude I

by BeingQuest

In our last, very tentative, approach to the question: “What is Cultural Criticism” (not too inconspicuously on our site header here averring that it is a science), we chose to adopt a stream-of-thought approach to kind-of get our feet wet with the idea of later wading into the deeper recesses of this question. Before we launch upon that endeavor though, we take a few moments here to reflect upon some sensible, if slightly epic of tone, observations that may ease our passage into the profound waters that lay ahead. Perhaps not, but the gravity of our endeavor whispers otherwise, no matter what we are able to make of it going forward.

May the gentle reader allow, without abandoning hope to the contrary, that we here cannot yet begin to really, truly practice Cultural Criticism in a way deserving of our already established conceits; namely, that such a discipline is, in fact: a). a definitive science at all, traditionally understood, or, b). a discipline anywhere near worthy of the high calling we have made for it. Not as yet, of course; and, so far, nothing has been adequately provided for grounds to such conceits, but for some implications. However, we will recommend that the gentle reader expect us to here retrace, time and again, the very ground already trespassed, until the whole of the terrain is firmly tamped and made suitable for the clear and convincing passage of other, like-minded sojourners who, perhaps miraculously, find themselves returning here for what unfolds.

Nobody with a daring capacity for trailblazing and exploration of relatively unexplored terrain would ever doubt that any push into the strange and wonderful would not necessarily get them turned-around and disoriented, landing them again at their beginning to begin afresh. This being said, not in what regards our question as stated, but in what must be demanded of our answers; and not demanded once, or twice, but many times in different manner from various angles till the full luster of our Quest for science becomes obviously apparent, and convincing. Only then shall we be able to say with honest confidence whether the conceits delivered here are justified, or their promise a living possibility and not mere chimera of over-determined speculations.

So, while we assert that the discipline of Cultural Criticism (CC) holds the potential for immense importance to the viability of Civilization into the next century and beyond, and which discipline must rise as a Phoenix from the ash-heap of failed and out-lived paradigms (old wine skins?) gone immediately before, we would hope also to be conscientious of the rigorous demands a true science would make upon our darling pet, not forgetting to admit that this or that construction of intellectual architecture will likely call for some temporary and ultimately dispensable buttress before the dawning science can legitimately instantiate itself among mere mortals as hierophant to the greater mysteries sure to consequently follow. That is, if our stated conceits hold good to their promises. Time and artifice will tell.

Finally, the purpose of our little Interlude here, as those to come, may serve as a slight remedy to the logical or architectural shortcomings at risk in such a venture as we here set for ourselves; some little cosmic or plausibly farcical catharsis of too much pent importance, or something like how a tablespoon of locally drawn and raw honey may inoculate against the wild germs awaiting their turn about every corner. Some time to ruminate on our purposes, our failures, or certain points of interest that deserve closer, clearer, notice; or, perhaps, such as our esteemed Commentariate may invite. Till then, Adieu.