I think one of the better teaching videos, with giving my background on how I make meaning of politics distinct from the political sphere is "The Great Citizen: Future Process Politics & Learning" from several months ago. I talk about my reasons for studying 'stars' like Michael Moore, Jordan Peterson, Marianne Williamson as a few popular culture examples. This seems to be my new research and writing--with my latest book manuscript currently under review as a study of the 2020 Democratic hopeful Marianne Williamson--a 'great citizen' in my mind and a teacher who can guide many to becoming such. And, yes, I am critical too.
In 2004 (one year after my dissertation on "Fearless Leadership") I was interviewed on Canadian national (CBC) Radio by one of the top program hosts (Shelagh Rogers). The live 18 min. interview (her in Toronto and me in Vancouver) is historical and a great moment in my life of possibility for "fearology" and the naming of the importance of fear's impacts. The program began as follows:
(S): Good morning!
(M) (Michael): Good morning Shelagh.
S: To begin, what’s a fearologist?
M: Well, a fearologist is somebody who studies the relationship of fear with, basically, Life. And that fear is not just what I’d call psychological fear but actually cultural, sociological, political fear.
S: And how did you become a fearologist?
M: Well, basically, I’m not trained in fearology. It’s hard to find anywhere that will give you a degree in that.
It is 14 years later and such an interview with the public media has not happened since with anything more than the very brief media interview (clip) of less than a minute on air. It is quite possible that public media or even independent media radio or tv will not ever interview me again. I've learned lessons about this kind of thing over the decades. The 'snowball effect' that we all wish for when we are promoting a cause may or may not come in our life-times. It's a humbling reality.
The point of sharing the Roger's interview is to point to my ongoing interrelationship with the art/activism (film making) of Michael Moore (B. and I went and saw his latest movie 11/9 last night... more on that later in this blog). Roger's and I also got into a discussion about Moore's award-winning Oscar film (2002):
M: I wish every parent, teacher and community leader would read the latest book on the culture of fear by Dr. Giroux, on how fear is being constructed through a cultural politics by elites in government, the military, and corporations—he says we are abandoning the young people of Gen X and Y. Democracy is being undermined by a culture of fear in a post-9/11 world. Giroux’s point, and mine, is that it doesn’t mean we don’t take action against terrorists, it means we don’t undermine democracy and all quality of life in doing it.
S: Michael, what is responsible for that?
M: Well I think you know media has unfortunately....
S: I’m leaving the studio.... [chuckles]
M: [chuckles] I know. I was just ready, you are going to shut the mic off here. I think it’s pretty clear that, Bowling for Columbine by , was a clear indicator of the impact that media has on constructing fear. So, I’ve been using this term, culturally constructed, or culturally-modified fear.
S: And Bowling for Columbine would be the culture of fear, leading to gun culture?
M: Gun culture and where we get in situations where one-third, for example, statistics, of housing starts in America are actually walled-communities. So, just think that one-third of housing starts are actually in gated or walled-communities.
S: Is the media it, Michael? Or are there other sources for the blooming of the culture of fear?
**** [For the full interview script: https://fearlessnessmovement.ning.com/forum/dancing-with-shelagh-rogers-on-cbc-radio-18-minutes-for-fearology ]
Michael Moore also showed up in a photo entry https://fearlessnessmovement.ning.com/photos/3allies where I talk about why Moore is important:
Well, after a lot of years of making documentaries, in the 'wild' style of art, activism, and education... Micheal Moore has just had his newest film released last night (mostly on the Trump election and following disasters to democracy in the USA) and on "fear" (and "terror") of all kinds of fascist waves going on all over the world.. I look forward to seeing his latest film, and it is not because I love everthing Moore does and how he represents people and problems--the big and "wicked problems" that we have to face as humanity... but I like to see how he uses his art, smarts, and technologies to "create curriculum" for the 21st century.
I followed his work closely in the post-Columbine highschool mass shooting and how he approached the American "Gun Problem" (aka "Fear Problem") in his movie that won an Academy Award, Bowling for Columbine" (2002).
I won't say much more at this point until I see the film, and listen to interviews of Moore... with the question in the back of my mind: "Is Moore a good artist, activist, educator?" and so far, I think he is a better artist-activist than he is an educator, and particularly I am referring to how he handles "fear" as a major topic... which runs all through all his best documentary works... in Bowling for Columbine he really was making a film about the growing "culture of fear" ... and its consequences...which, arguably, I would speculate have been brewing for a good 30 years in particular, and the symptoms are arising (e.g., gun violence) etc... and if you watch his 2002 award winning film, it is the "best" dealing with fear as a topic... and of course terror is not far away... in Fahrenheit 11/9 we'll no doubt once again see him dealing with "fear of Trump" and everything Trump represents ... watch carefully how he "teaches" us about what is going on and how best to understand fear/terror and how best to manage it... transform it... if he even gets to anything so complex... my critique of all his works (as he is a typical activist) is his stereotypes and polarizations (simplifications)--to create his stories.
RECENT VIDEO RESPONSE of mine to Moore's interview on "Democracy Now" tv program (with Amy Goodman):
Most recent video (2nd one) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EJLdM85Rwts&t=4s
I have slowly been getting media savvy and starting to put out to public access some 15-30 min. teaching videos on themes related, more or less, to my passions and fear and fearlessness.
The first one was done by Greg Wendt, a film-maker in Carbondale, IL, USA, on my approach to coloring and aesthetic development re: fearlessness practice.
The second one produced by my own amateur means from my home in Calgary, AB, Canada, on "Ethical Practice of Fearology"
The third one also produced on my own, is "Peer Counselling Outside of Distress" (on my passion to bring Liberation Peer Counseling back to life after a long hiatus)
26. Feartalk 4 (Part 1): Nicole Rallis & Barbara Bickel
27. Feartalk 4 (Part 2): Nicole Rallis & Barbara Bickel
28. L. E. T. 1: Shifting from a Coping Culture to Healing Culture"
29. New Ethical Leadership: Marianne Williamson 2
30. The Great Citizen: Future Process Politics and Learning
31. History of Transformation 1: Who's Afraid of Change
32. L. E. T. 2: Process of Balance
33. History of Transformation 2:
34. The Great Collapse: How Afraid Should We Be?
35. L. E. T. 3 : Reclaiming Our 10 Natural Healers
36. Depth of Psychology: Rebirth in the 21st Century
37. Marianne Williamson 3: Love and Fear
38. Psychotic 1: Loss of Baselines for Sanity
39. L. E. T. 4 : Emotional Fitness & Existential Capacity
40. FearTalk 5: Janet Sheppard & R. Michael Fisher
41. L. E. T. 5: Stealing Attention is Fear
42. Ken Wilber: Unique Philosopher for Our Time
43. Defining Philosophical Disability: Notes to the Bitter End
Also, I've produced with Barbara Bickel, a couple recent book trailers on my new books:
"Fearless Engagement of Four Arrows: The True Story of an Indigenous-based Social Transformer" (published 2018)
"Fear, Law and Criminology: Critical Issues in Applying the Philosophy of Fearism" (2018, still to be published in early autumn)
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