Love & Sex Narratives and the Death of Public Discourse

This is what goes through my head when I see a news story in the love and sex category. Chances are I can predict where the whole article is going to go. I thought that it be a nice to illustrate what I mean. There are four general narratives when it comes to love and sex stories. Let me list them for you.

  1. Tried something that is considered by my general demographic to be taboo. It made me question myself, my values and ideology. I feel that while I may not have any answers I am more tolerant of other people’s differences. Also This new thing I tried may be great for me and I wanted to write 2000 self-congratulatory words.
  2. We (we hear meaning this massive seemingly homogeneous society devoid of class racial and linguistic differences to name a few) need to stop doing this behavior that chastises, judges and promotes negative stereotypes which are damaging to many people (despite the fact that most of the people featured in the pictures are by majority Caucasians.
  3. Trying something new later in life. I am going to compare and contrast what I thought about it to what it actually is, or I will talk about an extreme behavior I encountered and try to make either some grand sweeping generalizations about a group of people
  4. Reflection of past ideologies, thoughts and experiences, some surprising things 1/5 of the way in but this is followed up by reflections of irony. Some times there are just ironic sardonic reflections.

Click on the pictures and see which narrative they fall under. Give or take most can be described and summed up by one narrative or a combination of the narratives listed above.  Tell me what you think.

Top Love and Sex Stories


Please, Don’t Misunderstand me

I have been very fortunate to have taken classes on rhetoric when I was younger and be on the speech and debate team. Rhetoric is the art of discourse which aims to improve the capability of writers or speakers to inform, persuade, or motivate particular audiences in specific situations. Going back to my homey Aristotle there are three ways that one can influence an audience. One can appeal to their emotion, their sense of logic, or the guiding beliefs or ideals that characterize a community, nation etc

When I look at these articles I am at a loss. There are no arguments presented, no stunning bit of logic presented us that will restore our faith in ourselves, or neighbor or the ideology our nations so expouse. I am not being engaged, or if I am it is only superficially. What I see is rather stock stories repeated again and again – the characters are a bit changed, the situation a bit changed but the outcome is always predictably the same. I am starting to feel that the need to talk intelligently about our lives and the world around it and the vast cycles of history we find ourselves in  are not the concern of the news media outlet.

I love As someone who writes I am very happy the authors get to feature their works and hopefully get paid for them.  My issues is with the media itself. Maybe it’s just me but does anyone get what I am saying ? When I read Habermas’ works on the public sphere many years ago I didn’t see the depth of it’s implications till now. It’s become increasing difficult to read the news and also comment on it as I feel I adding to the mess.

According to Habermas, a variety of factors resulted in the eventual decay of the public sphere, including the growth of a commercialmass media, which turned the critical public into a passive consumer public; and the welfare state, which merged the state with society so thoroughly that the public sphere was squeezed out. It also turned the “public sphere” into a site of self-interested contestation for the resources of the state rather than a space for the development of a public-minded rational consensus.  … […] … Habermas outlined how our everyday lives are penetrated by formal systems as parallel to development of the welfare state, corporate capitalism and mass consumption. These reinforcing trends rationalize public life. Disfranchisement of citizens occurs as political parties and interest groups become rationalized and representative democracy replaces participatory one. In consequence, boundaries between public and private, the individual and society, the system and the life world are deteriorating. Democratic public life cannot develop where matters of public importance are not discussed by citizens. An “ideal speech situation” requires participants to have the same capacities of discourse, social equality and their words are not confused by ideology or other errors. In this version of the consensus theory of truth Habermas maintains that truth is what would be agreed upon in an ideal speech situation.


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