Friday, 26 October 2007
Social awakening and Art Brut?
Micro sociology. The tacit rules of society. They can vary culture to culture. Yet largely there are some aspects of our behaviour that we are unaware that we adhere to rules of conduct. Obvious examples, you happen to be glancing at a stranger on a train, they look up and catch your glance, quickly a not to seem suspicious you look away. Or, one of my favourites in conversation analysis, flagged up to me by the great Robin Wooffitt, if someone proposes an invitation to a party and you are not keen on going you'll use softeners, "Well, I think I might be busy.. I think I've got some work to do.. I don't think I have much money.." (we could dissect the "I think"'s further, but won't), this breaks the news rather than an outright, abrupt refusal.
The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life by Erving Goffman is exactly a study and description of these sorts of tacit phenomenon. The way in which we behave in social situations to portray a certain image of ourselves, given the normative expectations and values of the culture we live in.
Now, we've all experienced a time or situation in which we felt awkward or unsure how to act. Sometimes we might even be shocked or surprised to learn that a certain action we have done does not fit with what would be expected, we have mis-interpreted, misjudged, done something out of the ordinary.
So imagine my - the nothing-matters-but-the-song music devotee - dismay and shock to learn from Art Brut a lesson in love.
Art Brut - Pump Up The Volume [via YouSendIt for 7 days]
Never had I realised that it was "possibly wrong" to leave a lover to adjust the volume of a song that I really like.
Is this a tacit rule that my one-track mind for pop music had ignored?
And now that this social crime has been alerted to me, will I change my behaviour? Nah, I should hope my lover would understand. In fact, he does and loves me all the more for my quirk.