I have always found it hard to ‘understand’ abstract art. To me it usually looks like something I could do in five minutes on Paint. I was really intrigued when I was reading through the TOK textbook and it talked about how people tend to become irritated or even angry when they can’t interpret abstract art. This is most definitely true in my case (and probably why I tend to get very irritated with Mr Saha’s mind-boggling puzzles at the start of every lesson). Abstract art doesn’t seem to me to follow any pattern or structure and therefore cannot make sense. My preference for simplistic, complementary and logical things is probably why I prefer art where the artist has ‘followed the rules’ – drawn inside the lines or joined the dots in a systematic way.
I also found it interesting in class when we talked about how an eyewitness can accidentally give false information (when an eye witness gave a completely incorrect account of the shot by the police a few years ago inLondon). I thought it was interesting to find out that this false information can be produced due to the stress put on an individual’s memory. This is similar to when someone keeps asking me to recall something from a while ago, my story probably keeps changing as the actual events mix with what I wanted or didn’t want to happen.
I chose Lady Gaga‘s Born This Way as I believe it teaches about knowledge of self.
This is a particular topical argument in this day and age where people feel pressurised from many angles. How do we know how we are supposed to behave or dress like? Is there even such thing as a sense of self? Newspapers and magazines are constantly telling us what to wear, how to look and to some extent what to think. Lady Gaga’s lyrics include the phrase ‘I’m beautiful in my own way, because God makes no mistakes’. To me this is a vital message to everyone especially teenagers all over the world. The media portray a negative image of how teenagers are. TOK poses the question ‘How do we know who we are?’ And many people’s answer is what the government, magazines or friends have conditioned them to believe. Does this menan we have no sense of self? For example: Can people be born homosexual? In the 21stcentury it seems like the answer to that question is no. With many (commonwealth) countries still HANGING people because of the sexual orientation and many young teenagers committing suicide due to bullying about being gay.
Personally I believe Born This Way is a beautifully written song that encapsulates the fact
that many of us have lost our sense of self as we feel like it doesn’t feel right to be unique.