What you don’t know, you don’t love

Today is a gray day, not much sun, and the leaves are almost gone. Just read another interesting article that I thought I would share.

It is a study of Milgram’s experiments in the 70s and how phenomenal dissociation can affect your actions with respect to the environment. Phenomenal dissociation is the lack of immediate, sensual engagement with the consequences of our everyday actions and with the human and nonhuman others that we affect with our actions. Simple things, and like most things involving humans complicated at the same time,  like the more distance between you and the environment, reduction and/or distortion in feedback, reduction of empathy, disruption of the actor’s association of the harm with his or her action all work against making changes to in our own behaviour. And most interesting, because we trust institutions to mediate on our behalf, it can actually take away from individual agency. Perhaps in some ways, consumption is a phenomenal dissociation? And could the ‘busyness’ in one’s life, the search for the perfect dinner party also be a form of distancing from what is real, what makes us human, what is important? Enough questions for a gray day.

Article: Worthy, K. 2008. Modern institutions, phenomenal dissociations, and destructiveness toward humans and the environment. Organization & Environment, 21(2): 148-170

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