[-empyre-] The Market from Here (post by Abdel Hernández)

Johannes Birringer Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk
Sun Nov 23 04:40:03 EST 2014

[relayed post sent to us from Abdel in La Habana)

Thanks for inviting me to give my opinion on your discussion theme; I am usually not motivated and interested in political themes but if I have to say something I would say that I am a Cultural Relativist, a classic one. 

   I am especially interested on how the implosionist and abortionist institutional model proclaimed since the eighties in the art field is sociologically unsustainable in EUA, England and Europe and anywhere around the world including Cuba too. I am not individually worried about chaos; I think we need to learn to work and live in a world of heterogeneity and complexity in the age of cybernetics; we are not out of control, I am not in agreement with that, we are controlling and being controlled by science and technology, and this is something enabling new potentials to communities’ value formations and reproductions directly between science, technology and communities. Controlling and being controlled by science directly is all we need, it is sufficient to be rational in the right way. We simply don’t need representation. We can afford our future and our children’s futures without science and technology, science is sufficient to education and educational institutions, and beliefs as in religion don’t need representations. 
    I recommend my essay “Artists Entrance: Five Exhibits at Rice University [The Market from Here], on the  horizons of the critical exercises of the ready made… [http://www.digitalcultures.org/Library/despues.html]

    I centered on this experience of the spring exhibits [The Market from Here] on the Rice campus, the interdisciplinary relation and communication between high art/sociology-high art/anthropology precisely as a cultural relativist; my actions as curator centered on and approached a relativist concept of culture that discusses and opposes Islamist ethnocultural fundamentalism, meaning ideologies of each cultural ethnicity as a closure, an essence impossible to be transethnically and transculturally communicating and participating together as friends,  humans, communities, brothers, etc, etc, products, initiatives and developments from a variety of different perspectives together, rationality endeavors, media  and publications by persons of various social and cultural backgrounds together, heterogeneity and communities mixtures (pluricultural relativism), multiculturalism and so on. 

   As a cultural relativist with this series of exhibits I discussed and opposed culturalist essentialism which can’t imagine anything between several ethnicities without figuring to eliminating one ethnicity with the other or as eating each one in between as in cannibalism, or only becoming an ethnical mixation by biological reproduction. With my cultural relativist position as curator, explicitly by each one of the exhibits I produced, discussed and presented, I proposed that the ideologies of cannibalism between cultural ethnicities are hidden, both between anthropologists who believe in such ideology as in culturalism, the ideology of an ABSOLUTE ethnocultural essentialism which is indeed an ABSOLUTE fundamentistalist ethnocultural terrorism, it is an ideology about ethnicities as essentialist closures. 

   Such essentialisms want, for example, that particularized culture relates only to particularized culture, Italians relate only with Italians, French only with French,  Germans only with Germans, Anglo-Saxons and Anglo-Americans only with Anglo-Saxons and Anglo-Americans, Cubans only with Cubans and between Cubans or Latin-Americans only between Latin-Americans, Latin culture between Latin culture as ethnicity-closure,  and you can apply it to any ethnoculture. I am sustaining that it is an ethnocultural fundamentalism opposed to cultural relativism, and expresses segregationism and xenophobia. 
    As a classical cultural relativist with this interdisciplinary project series I discuss the very opposite of such ideologies, namely in art as in anthropology theory. 
   What is culture?, should be the question, an old one, and with this series I sustain and discuss as cultural relativist that we are not agreeing with such essentialist ideologies in answering this basic question. 

Best Wishes

Abdel Hernández San Juan

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