I am an artist at heart, but with intellectual reflection. I am a philosopher in an artistic sense, rather than a ‘pure reason’ saint. My experience is not exclusionary.
Hence my dilemma. In not only thought, but indeed act. Where it becomes the most difficult is in our Post-modern Marxist world of production. There is no denying it; rather, the only way to deny the Marxist analysis is to limit what is whole to one or more of its parts. And yet, I deny it through the whole, as a whole.
I think this is the paradox of out current philosophical paradigm. Of course, if we can still see philosophy as divided into two camps, i.e. analytical and continental, then I appear continental. My problem, however, is exactly in the discernment between the two. For me, though I find myself immersed in continental understanding and usually prefer that style and approach, I am seeing that what is continental is but a sort of subset of the analytical ideal, using the same method of (capital R) Reason — but that discussion is for my books.
My wife is an artist, but is likewise what I call an activist: She’s sees her artistic ability as ethically involved with creating change, dismantling unbalanced power structures through actual engagement with people and groups. She is less theoretically bound than I am philosophically, though she is grounded in sure theory and authentic praxis. Able and willing.
If I might be so presumptuous as to frame my wife’s views: When I talk to her about my book or my music, her view is that the artist does not do art for the purpose of having it viewed by the multitudes. That the art is for personal substance, and that through this authentic substance it will be appreciated by who it is supposed to connect with, that by virtue of the art itself, its work will be accomplished. (Do I hear Heidegger?).
Sure. Yes. My wife and I come from similar artistic, generational and theoretical backgrounds.
Nevertheless, I am stuck then in a tiny world where I feel that my art-philosophy is taking place in a space that is much smaller that it is supposed to be working. I still feel that I indeed do art for people to appreciate. I want people to read it or listen to it, to interact with it and me, and to give feed back. Like a community –but admittedly, I am kind of one-sided. Again, the dilemma. But Im not going into all that right here; I am working on that.
This is my process. And it is not only my process but my philosophy. The two are not exclusive but are rather intertwined and inextricable from one another.
It seems I am caught in a condition that occurs as I am attempting to remove myself from it, as though I exist due to this contradiction, and not against it or revolting from it.
It is not a Sartrean Existential situation that I am involved with. The manner I am involved in that kind of Existentialism is through a rejection of its dictates; I am more in an actual complicity with its definitional regimen. Therefore, my situation is existential in, what I would call, a true philosophical sense, rather than a Reasoned philosophical definitional sense. That the definitional regimen of philosophy is a kind of philosophy which occurs as a condition of existence rather than a confining ontological structure of (big E) Existence.
If I must continue with the Existential bit — Existential angst is something that I no longer encounter, but is something that I am able to view. So it is with a particular kind of philosophy. I am involved with it, but it does not do justice to what is actually occurring.
And then: How do I go about authentically promoting and marketing my book?
That is the question.