The logic of wokeness seems to me to be the logic of experience. Experiences are the opposite of principles. The latter organize the world and the more successful they are the less conscious they become, the less present in subjective experience. Racial equality, for example: understood as a political and social principle, it would reach its goal by dropping out of our consciousness. It would become part of the world around us.
Wokeness begins from the realization that there would be some loss in this. If racial equality is a valuable principle, it seems that we should be vividly aware of it. According to the logic of experience, the goal should be intensity, not naturalness.
Thus: in the world of principles, you would wake up and go about your life without even being aware people have different skin colours. In the world of experience, racial equality is thematized. Think about it this way. If you bought a movie about racial equality, you would likely be disappointed if the characters in the movie went about their business with literally no awareness of race. Now imagine you complained and the director answered that his movie was indeed about racial equality because racial equality was everywhere present in the story and life situations. I am guessing you would complain: perhaps it was present but … it was not thematized.
I think wokeness points to a problem with liberalism. We need to experience things. We want to experience them intensely. It is not enough for them to provide a natural background for our lives.
The reverse, of course, is that wokeness is interested in the subjective experience, not objective reality. Its most vociferous critics should reflect on this fact. Wokeness will not change the world because it is not interested in changing the world.
This article was originally published by Bruno Maçães. Read the original article.
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