Monthly Archives: August 2017

Quantity/Quality (425)

Quality and Quantity

Quality is the basic character or nature of something. Quantity is a variable amount of a thing, where the amount does not affect the quality (the basic nature) of what that thing is.

When the quantity of something changes, i.e. if a book has 100 pages as opposed to 50 pages, a quantitative change has occurred. There are times however, when the amount of change in a thing changes its very character. For example, if the book was reduced to one page, it is no longer a book. When change affects the very character of the thing, a qualitative change has occurred.

Harvey (425)

Brian sent this image with the following quote:

“More than any hurricane before, Harvey struck at a time when almost anyone can document their own experiences through social media” (Daniel Victor NY Times).

Cite: McIntosh, Timothy. “Harvey Elderly”, Found,  Twitter, 29 Aug 2017, no url


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Surface and Depth (425)

This essay by Paul Street– The Road to Charlottesville— evokes some of the basic oppositions we’ll be discussing at length over the course of the semester: the difference between appearance and essence, surface and depth. Those pairings also relate to the denotation-connotation/ material-ideal/ object-subject binaries that we briefly addressed on the first day of class.

Grasping the nature of this national racism in [the] 21stcentury means looking at the different levels on which race operates here. One level is at the nation’s discursive and symbolic surface. It is about language, imagery, signs, the color of elite personnel, representation, and, well, symbols.

A different and deeper level is institutional and structural.  It’s about how labor markets, the financial sector, the real estate industry, the educational system, the criminal justice complex, the military state, the corporate system, the dominant media, and capitalism more broadly all work to deepen, maintain, and/or reduce racial oppression and inequality.