2018년 1월 1일 월요일

Dic: 용례, usages/ "asshole theory" of something (or everything?)


※ 발췌 (excerpts):

출처 1: Limitations of Criminology Research in Chapter 1 "Crime and Criminology"

Students are often frustrated by the failure of criminology to provide certain and clear-cut answers to the crime problem. This frustration also promotes the view that theory is both illogical and impractical. Jeffrey has accurately portrayed this attitude:

Theoretical courses are characterized as useless. "I want some course material that is relevant," is the usual student response to the curriculum. When one asks, "What is relevance?" it turns out to be vocational training in being a police [officer] or a corrections officer.
Clearly, these students are saying that "street smarts" are more valuable than "book knowledge" of criminal behavior.

One example of this type of thinking is the student who has worked or is working in the criminal justice system and who believes that the only legitimate source of knowledge is experience. The argument is summarized by Carter:
Nothing personal, but most professors don't know what they are talking about. They sit on campus putting out all this good shit about rehabilitation and causes of crime. Most of them haven't ever been on the street and if you want to know what's happening, you have to be on the street. Instead of telling us about crime, we ought to be telling them. If they would spend a couple of days with us, they might find out what's happening. No, they don't want to do that. It might upset all their theories.
Indeed, this belief is not limited to students. In academia, one of its most vocal and visible adherents is George Kirkham. His experience as "the professor who became a cop" led him to first gently admonish his colleagues to observe first-hand the problems of police officers before criticizing them. He later turgidly stated that a "criminologist would not know a criminal if one bit him the ass."

Another source of the street-smarts bias stems from what Carter calls the Dick Tracy Mentality. This mindset is characterized by several beliefs:
  • The crime fighter is no mere mortal but, rather, a SUPER crime fighter.
  • The criminal is distinctive, unique, readily indentifiable, and different (form "normal" people).
  • There are two kinds of people in societyㅡgood guys and bad guys.
A corollary view holds that theoretical statements represent attempts to provide a defense for criminals. The reality, however, is that criminological theory attempts to ^explain^ rather then ^excuse^ criminal behavior.

Still another version of this mentality can be bluntly called the "asshole theory" of crime by which police officers guide their actions in specific situations. "Assholes" commit crimes that are motiveless, completely senseless, or otherwise irrational. Carter relates this statement by a police officer/student:
I've heard all the theories of crime. Let me tell you, crime is caused by assholes. That's the asshole theory. If you want to check that, come out on the street. See it like it is.
( ... ... )


출처 2: "The Asshole Theory of Internatinal Relations" (Thomas R. Wells, Mar 2015)

Some countries are assholes. They tample on international norms about human rights, weapon trafficking, maritime borders, ( ... ) and so on. ( ... ... )

We all know that people can be asshles. In a helpful little book, Assholes: A Theory, the philosopher Aaron James analyses the phenomenon and how to deal with it. James defines the asshole individual (p.5) as someone who, in interpersonal or cooperative relations,
  1. allows himself to enjoy special advantages and does so systematically;
  2. does this out of an entrenched sense of entitlement; and
  3. is immunized by his sense of entitlement against the complaints of other people.
James' theory is directed at the anti-social behaviour of individuals. It covers much of the same ground that organizational psychologists have mapped as the 'dark triad' of anti-social personality types─narcissism, Machiavellianism, and sub-clinical psychopathy─which will be unfortunately familiar to most people who have worked in any large organization.

But James adds two things. First, his account is a thoroughly ^moral^ one: the asshole is morally repugnant because of his fundamental lack of respect for the moral status of those he interacts with: ^He doesn't register other people as morally real^. Second, because James' account starts from the moral requirements of participation in cooperative relations rather than from human psychology, it is more general than anything produced by organizational psychologists. ( ... ... )

( ... ... ) I believe that the asshole theory of internatinal relations has much more to offer than cathartic name-calling or empty moralising. ( ... ... )


출처 3: "An Asshole Theory of Technology" (John Herrman, Apr 2015)

One of the selling points of the Apple Watch is that it can help make you less of an asshole. This was the thrust of the first major report about what the watch is like to wear, published before we knew what it looked like. It's in Apple's marketing. "You know how very often technology tends to inhibit rather than enable more nuanced, subtle communication?" Jony Ive asked in an interview with ^Vogue^.

It is also at the core of the New York Times review.
The effect was so powerful that people who've previously commented on my addiction to my smartphone started noticing a change in my behavior; my wife told me that I seemed to be getting lost in my phone less than in the past. She found that a blessing.
This reminded me of something I came across a few year ago. It's an account of Sony Chairmen Akio Morita testing out the first Walkman:
I rushed home with the first Walkman and was trying it out with different music when I noticed that my experiment was annoying my wife, who felt shut out. All right, I decided, we need to make provision for two sets of headphones. The next week the production staff had produced another model with two headphone jacks.
And and accompanying note, written a decade later in 1989, from writer Rebecca Lind (both collected from this book):
... the potential interaction of personal stereo use and interpersonal communication was considered from the very beginning of Walkman product development. Further, the potential impact was deemed to be something which should be remedied, hence, the addition of extra jacks and the "hot line" feature [which reduced playback volume and allows sharing listners to converse without removing their headphones]. Because these attempts were made to neutralize this situation, we may assume that the personal stereo was at first considered to have a potentially negative influence on interpersonal communication.
There seems to be something similar going on with the Apple Watch: an assumption not just that watches don't do enough, or that other smartwatch are bad, or that an Apple Watch might allow people to do new things, but that the Apple Watch can, and must, fix the way people behave. It is, in this view, a tool for correcting problems created by the device to which it  ^must be paired to operate^. The Apple Watch is supposed to be a filter between you and your attention-suck hellworld smartphone; we will give it permission to intervene because it is slightly easier to look at while reducing our what's-going-on-over-there-by-which-I-mean-in-my-pocket ─ by-which-I-mean-everywhere-else anxiety just enough to keep us sane. It provides a slight buzz, hopefully just enough, at a lower social cost. So it's a little like ... methadone?

Sony was worried that its portable stereo would be alienating. This turned out to be true. But the impulse to ^correct^ it was wrong: the thing that made it alienating was precisely the thing that made it good. The more compelling a gadget is, the more you use it, the more the people around you resent you for using it, the more they are pressured to ^use it themselves^. (The fact that these devices are now all connected to each other only accelerates the effect.)

This is the closest thing we have to a law of portable gadgetry: the more annoying it is to the people around you, the "better" the concept. The more that using it makes you seem like an asshole to people who aren't using it, the brighter its commercial prospects.

( ... ... ) And it will certainly help remedy the specific behaviors associated by previous devices. But just ^imagine^ how much of an asshole you'll seem like to people in your physical vicinity for whom lensworld is inaccessible. ( ... ... )

( ... ... ) [The Apple Watch] will succeed if it can create new rude exclusionary worlds for its wearers (this is why I wouldn't underrate the weird "Taptic" communications stuff).

It will succeed, in other words, to whatever extent it allows people to be assholes.


출처 4: "The Asshole Theory of Literature" (Michael Gruber, Aug 2012)

I've just finished reading Phillip Roth's ^The Human Stain^ and Jonathan Franzen's ^Freedom^, both well-crafted novels that have in common but one thing, which they share with practically every other work of literature: they are all about assholes. Have you noticed this? Virtually every great work of fiction is about someone acting as stupidly as he or she possibly can. Okay, we all have friends who occasional[ly] act like assholes, as we all do ourselves, and part of the purpose of friendship is to call out our buddies on this, and we expect them to call us out as well. It's a big part of friendship, and it's a common observation that assholes often lose their friends.

Nobody likes an asshole, except in literature where we can't seem to get enough of them. Have Roth and Franzen, to take a couple of examples, ever written about someone who wasn't being a complete jerk?  They have not. Being a jerk is what literature is about and I wonder why this is so. And don't these people have friends? For example:

Achilles, what's with the sulking? Guys are getting killed out there and you're pissed off about a ^girl^? You know what? You're ^acting^ liek a girl! Don't be an asshole!

Oh, you saw a ghost? A ^ghost^? Give me a break! And on this basis you're going to screw up your life? Stop being an asshole, Hamlet, and get your butt back to school.

Lear, Othello, Macbeth, the list goes on. ( ... ... )

My theory has not developed enough to propose a cultural substrate for the asshole phenomenon. Is it what we have instead of morality plays? Are we supposed to derive warnings--don't be like that? That's not the sense I get from this kind of fiction. The sense I get is despair. The world is such, the authors seem to be saying, as to make assholes of us all. There is no place to stand as a human person: ( ... ... )


출처 5: The "Silicon Valley Asshole" Theory (Feb 2013)

"I've been around a long time and I've noticed patterns. I detected this pattern early on─there's a certain kind of person who starts a company from a napkin and will still be CEO when the company is making a billion dollars. You have Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Michael Dell ... I said to myself─line them up agains a wall, what makes them all the same? They're all assholes."


출처 6: "A Social Offender for Our Times" (Evan R. Goldstein, Chronicle of Higher Education, Dec 2012)

"What are your working on?" is academe's standard conversation starter, and for the past five years Geoffrey Nunberg has had a nonstandard response: "a book on assholes."

( ... ... ) "When people say a word is beneath consideration, it's a sign that there's a lot going on."

Aaron James can relate. He is a professor of philosophy at the University of California at Irvine and the author of Assholes: A Theory, which was published in late October, a few months later Nunberg's book, Ascent of the A-Word: Assholism, the First Sixty Years.

( ... ... ) Why the heightened interest? After all, assholes have been around for ages─even if the word's figurative sense is modern. (It was soldier slang during World War II.) But something ^has^ changed. Consider Donald Trump, an unquestioned asshole in the eyes of James and Nunberg. The attention our culture pays to self-absorbed buffoons is for James evidence that assholery is on the rise. "Our narcissistic age thus might help explain why assholes seem to be everywhere of late." Nunberg takes it a step further, noting that every era has its emblematic scoundrel: Once it was the cad, later it was the phony, today it is the asshole.

"A Cornell man, a Deke, a perfect asshole." Thus did Norman Mailer introduce Lieutenant Dove, literature's first asshole, in the 1948 novel The Naked and the Dead. From the start, Nunberg writes, the word carried overtones of class. "Asshole" launched its "attack from the ground level, in the name of ordinary Joes, people whose moral authority derives not from their rank or breeding but their authenticity, which is exactly the thing that the asshole lacks."

So what is an asshole, exactly? How is he (and assholes are almost always men) distinct from other types of social malefacttors? ( ... ... )

James was at the beach when he bega mulling those questions. "I was watching one of the usual miscreants surf by on a wave and thought, Gosh he's an asshole." Not an intellectual breakthrough, he concedes, but his reaction had what he calls "cognitive content." In other words, his statement was more than a mere expression of feeling. He started sketching a theory of assholes, refining his thinking at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Science at Stanford, where he spent a year as a fellow in 2009.

He consulted Rousseau (who, James notes, was something of an asshole himself on account of his shabby parenting skills), Hobbs (especially his views on the "Foole" who breack the social contract), Kant (his notion of self-conceit in particular), and more-recent scholarship on psychopaths. He spoke with psychologists, lawyers and anthropologists, all of whom suggested asshole reading lists. "There are a lot of similar characters studied in other disciplines, like the free rider or amoralist or the cheater," James says, calling his time at Stanford an "interdisciplinary education in asshole theory."

James argues for a three-part definition of assholes that boils down to this: Assholes act out of a deep-rooted sense of entitlement, a habitual and persistent belief that they deserve special treatment. (Nunberg points out that use of the phrase "sense of entitlement" tracks the spread of "asshole"─both have spiked since the 1970s). How to distinguish an asshole from a scumbag, a jerk, a prick, or a schmuck? Assholes are systematic. We all do assholeish things, but only an asshole feel fully justified in always acting like an asshole. As James put it, "If one is special on one's birthday, the asshole's birthday comes every day."

To put meat on the bones of this theory, James names names. He was loath to do it. ( ... ) He walks us through the "teeming asshole ecosystem." There is the boorish asshole, who willfully flouts basic standards of decency (Rush Lambaugh and Michael Moore); the smug asshole, who is certain of his intellectual superiority (Richard Dawkins, Larry Summers, and Bernard-Henry Levy, whom James describes as "a caricature of the intellectual asshole"); the asshole boss (think Michael Scott on television's ^The Office^); the royal asshole (Henry VIII); the corporate asshole (Steve Jobs); the reckless asshole (Dick Cheney); ( ... ... )

( ... ... )

Among the more intriguing issues taken up by James is the relationship between capitalism and asshole production. Simply put, does capitalism encourage assholes? James quotes Samuel Bowles, a professor emeritus of economics at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, who argues that market thinking "may set in motion a spiral of market-induced erosion of other-regarding and ethical values, which in turn prompts greater reliance on markets, which in turn further erodes values, and so on."

A society caught in that spiral, James argues, is a society in distress. ( ... ... )


출처: <그들은 왜 뻔뻔한가> 아론 제임스 지음. 추수밭 2013.

독선과 독설, 얌체짓과 꼴통짓을 일삼는 우리 사회 골칫덩이들의 민낯을 파헤친다. 왜 모 기업 임원은 라면 맛이 없다며 여승무원을 폭행했을까? 왜 스티브 잡스는 베푸는 데 인색하고 동료들에게 악담을 퍼부었을까? 불행히도 우리는 가정에서, 직장에서, 사회에서 예의와 규칙 따위는 쉽게 무시해 버리는 사람들과 마주치며 살아가고 있다. 그들은 왜 그렇게 뻔뻔한 행동을 저지르는 것일까?

캘리포니아 대학교 철학 교수인 아론 제임스는 '골칫덩이 이론'을 통해, 우리 입에서 저절로 욕(Asshole: 개새끼, 꼴통, 저능아, 골칫덩이 등)이 나오게 하는 사람들의 속마음을 낱낱이 파헤친다. 그리고 그들이 지닌 부도덕한 특권 의식이 어떻게 조직을 망치고 자본주의 사회를 망가뜨리는지 철학적으로 분석하고, 건전한 사회를 위한 현실적인 대안을 제시한다.


출처 8: <또라이 트럼프> 애런 제임스 지음. 한국경제신문 2016년.

트럼프를 ‘Assholes’이라고 칭하며, 미국 내에 불고 있는 트럼프 현상에 대해 현실적이고 철학적인 관점에서 재미있게 재조명했다. 도널드 트럼프라는 인물을 스스로 특권을 누릴만한 자격이 있다고 여기며 다른 사람의 비판은 아랑곳하지 않는 뻔뻔한 철면피로 규정하고, 어쩌면 그가 철면피이기 때문에 대중들의 지지를 더 받는지도 모른다는 전제하에, 트럼프 현상이 왜 일어났는가에 대해 파헤치고 있다.

저자는 짤막하지만 강렬한 통찰로, 한쪽으로 치우치지 않는 견해를 피력하기 위해 루소나 프로이트, 플라톤, 홉스 등 여러 정치철학자들의 이론과 견해를 빗대어 트럼프에 대한 철면피 이론을 끌고 나간다. 철학과 교수이기도 한 그의 글은 비판적임과 동시에 위트가 넘친다.

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