Think, don’t Believe. The Questions, not the Anwers, are Possible, but Maybe not True.

If This will be true, what is the Consequence?

In 2019, Greta Thunberg sailed across the Atlantic on a yacht to attend a UN climate conference in New York.

Delivering what is probably her most famous speech, she angrily told world leaders they were not doing enough.

”You all come to us young people for hope. How dare you? You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words,” Greta Thunberg said.

Is it Possible True that:

General elections will be held in Sweden on 11 September 2022 to elect the 349 members of the Riksdag. They in turn will elect the Prime Minister of Sweden. Under the constitution, regional and municipal elections will also be held on the same day.

Abortion legislation: Right to abortion up to the end of the 18th week of pregnancy

Law against rape within marriage: Yes

Violence against women in close relationships: On average 17 women are killed each year by their husband, boyfriend, ex-husband or ex-boyfriend.

In 2020, the number of police known rape cases in Sweden was 9,360 cases – an increase of 9 percent over the previous year. 14 percent of those affected were between 15 and 17 years old, 32 percent under 15 years. In 93 percent of the cases, the victims were female. In the age group up to 17 years of age, the crime statistics found an increase of 21 percent.

Femicide or feminicide is a sex-based hate crime term, broadly defined as ”the intentional killing of women or girls because they are female”, though definitions vary depending on its cultural context. Feminist author Diana E. H. Russell was the first person to define and disseminate this term in modern times, in 1976. She defines the word as ”the killing of females by males because they are female.” Other feminists place emphasis on the intention or purpose of the act being directed at females specifically because they are female. Others include the killing of females by females.

Six women have been killed in just five weeks in Sweden, reigniting debates about domestic violence in a country usually praised for its gender equality.

The deaths span three regions and three generations, but in almost all cases there has been a common thread: the arrest of a man they had had a close relationship with.

Two of the killings took place in broad daylight: one in a rural town centre in the south of the country, another at a train and bus station in Linkoping, a university city south of the capital.

In 2020, 16,461 assault cases were reported against women in a close relationship in Sweden. That is a 15.4% rise on the 2019 figure of 14,261, reported by the National Council for Crime Prevention.

Human trafficking is a serious crime that abuses people’s fundamental rights and dignity. It involves the criminal exploitation of vulnerable people for the sole purpose of economic gain.

Human trafficking is a modern form of slavery. It is often transnational in character and its victims are of both genders and all ages.

Trafficking can take various forms and may involve:

sexual exploitation, including prostitution;
forced labour or services;
slavery, servitude and related practices;
the removal of vital organs.
Trafficking can also take the form of exploitation for the purpose of forced criminality, such as pickpocketing, shoplifting and drug trafficking.

The most innocent clues can sometimes help crack a case. The objects are all taken from the background of an image with sexually explicit material involving minors. For all images below, every other investigative avenue has already been examined. Therefore we are requesting your assistance in identifying the origin of some of these objects. We are convinced that more eyes will lead to more leads and will ultimately help to save these children.

Can you help us recognise the objects? We specifically want to trace their origin (location/country). You can help by clicking on an object you recognise and providing Europol with the information you have on the object. This can be done anonymously. Once the origin of an object is identified, we will inform the competent law enforcement authority of the involved country to further investigate this lead and hopefully speed up the identification of both the offender and the victim.

34-point programme – Government measures to combat gang crime
Published 12 March 2021

On 21 September 2019, the Government presented 34 new measures to combat gang crime. This is the largest package of measures to combat gang crime ever in Sweden and includes both short- and long-term measures.

In combination with the historic expansion of the Swedish Police Authority by 10 000 employees by 2024, the stricter penalties that have already been introduced, and the additional SEK 2.4 billion invested in the judicial system in 2020, these new measures are further intensifying the fight against crime in Sweden.
The 34 points cover four areas: law enforcement tools, sanctions, breaking the culture of silence and crime prevention.

Law enforcement tools
The police will be permitted to read encrypted communications on, for example, apps and chat platforms that are often used within criminal networks.
The police will be able to use secret coercive measures in more cases to fight serious organised crime.
The police will have greater scope to search premises in their work to combat shootings and other serious crime.
Mandatory remand for more offences, such as robbery, gross assault and gross extortion. We must get serious criminals off the streets.
Faster prosecution of criminal offences throughout the country. A pilot project has demonstrated that it is possible to investigate and prosecute minor offences both faster and with greater quality. This also frees up police and prosecutor resources for more serious offences.
The regulatory framework for security guards will be reviewed, partly based on the need to free up resources for the Swedish Police Authority to use in higher priority police work.
Camera surveillance using automatic vehicle and number plate recognition will be facilitated at our borders to prevent transnational crime and gang crime.
Multi-agency cooperation to fight serious organised crime will be enhanced.
It must be easier to confiscate the proceeds of crime from criminal gangs. Crime must not pay.
More crimes committed by children will be investigated. The regulations concerning these investigations will be reviewed and improved to ensure that a high level of quality is maintained.
Sanctions
Reduced sentences will be abolished for young adults who commit serious and repeated offences. Such offences will be met with a stronger response than previously.
An inquiry will review whether exclusion orders are possible within the framework of the system of sanctions.
Additional funding to placements under the Care of Young Persons Act. It is essential that, where necessary, municipalities can increase the number of placements under the Care of Young Persons Act.
The National Board of Institutional Care will provide more care places and improved quality in its activities so that fewer young people relapse into crime after their care placement is completed.
Stricter penalties for anyone recruiting young people to criminal activities, in order to prevent the recruitment of new gang members.
Stricter penalties for offences linked to disputes among criminals. Innocent people must be protected and cycles of revenge broken.
Stricter penalties and greater scope for Swedish Customs to stop the flow of weapons and explosives.
Stricter penalties for anyone selling narcotics to others.
Anyone who does not take part in relapse prevention measures may have their conditional release postponed and thus serve a longer prison sentence.
A new sanction – youth supervision – for young people is being introduced. For example, the young person may be forbidden to leave home in the evenings and at night at weekends, and this will be monitored using an electronic ankle tag. The aim is to apply this sanction in the event of serious offences or serious relapse.
The need for legislative amendments concerning false witness statements during police interviews will be investigated.
Breaking the culture of silence
To encourage more suspects to assist in criminal investigations, a crown witness system – that is, incentives for criminals to testify against each other – is being investigated.
Increased penalties for obstruction of justice. It is unacceptable that witnesses and victims of crime are subjected to violence or threats.
Increased penalties for lying in court and for protecting a criminal will be investigated.
The protection of witnesses and their relatives will be reviewed. The possibility to testify anonymously will be investigated.
Enhanced witness protection programmes to encourage witnesses of crime to testify in court.
Crime prevention
A cross-party committee of inquiry is being appointed to present proposals on long-term measures to increase security and reduce crime.
Long-term investments in schools and social services in socially disadvantaged areas. Action to combat segregation, within the framework of the Swedish Agency against Segregation, will be significantly enhanced.
Social services must be able to intervene earlier and in more situations. Children and young people in need of social measures may miss out on them if their parents do not consent and the criteria for compulsory care are not met.
Social services must be available in the evenings and at weekends in socially disadvantaged areas.
Municipalities must be given a statutory responsibility to act to prevent crime.
Coordinated measures for children and young people at risk will be implemented. The aim is to improve collaboration between school health and welfare services, health care services and social services for at-risk groups in socially disadvantaged areas.
A national defector programme will improve support and coordination for anyone wanting to leave criminal gangs.
Action to combat money laundering must be made more effective and efficient.

Suicide is a public health concern, and the Public Health Agency’s role in preventing suicide is to coordinate efforts on a national level. We are also responsible for monitoring, developing and disseminating knowledge to prevent suicide.

In 2018, a total of 1,259 people aged 15 or older died as a result of suicide in Sweden. The national suicide rate, i.e. the number of suicides per 100,000 inhabitants aged 15 and older, was 15 that year. Of the deceased, 70 percent were men. The suicide rate was highest in the age group 85 years and older, and lowest among those aged 15–29 years.

Development over time
Between 2006 and 2018, the suicide rate in Sweden among men aged 45–64 decreased while among women aged 15–29 it increased. In all other age groups, however, no statistically significant changes occurred during this time period.

Number of suicides per 100,000 persons in Sweden, presented in different age groups, for the time period 2006–2018.

Facts about suicide among young people
The suicide rate among young people is not declining
Some 40-50 people under the age of 20 take their own lives in Sweden every year, of which around five are under 15.
Over the past fifteen years, the suicide rate in Sweden has declined by about 20 per cent, as it has in much of the EU, The trend does not, however, apply to young people, for whom the rate has remained stable for many decades.
Suicide is the leading cause of death among men between the ages of 15 and 44 in Sweden.
This article was first published in Swedish in the magazine Medicinsk Vetenskap No. 4/2009.

Claims about suicide – true or false?

People who often talk about suicide will not attempt it.
False! Most people who commit suicide do talk about it, more or less explicitly. But the people around them don’t always get the message.

Talking or writing about suicide is risky – you should let sleeping dogs lie.
False! Research shows that it can work preventatively since it can make the person aware that they need to seek help.

Suicidal thoughts are common amongst teenagers.
True! It’s relatively common for teenagers to think about suicide and existential issues. But if such thoughts lead to a suicide attempt, they must be taken extremely seriously as an expression of severe emotional problems.

Teenage boys are less likely to talk about suicide before committing the act.
True! Boys often keep their feelings to themselves and also commit suicide more often. It’s twice as common for young men to take their lives than young women.

Most young people do not convey their thoughts of suicide to adults.
True! Young people often turn to their peers with their problems. It’s also not uncommon for then to find it easier to talk to adults other than their own parents.

Suicide happens suddenly without warning.
False! The suicide process in adults is often long and drawn out. But in young people it can more often occur suddenly, and so it’s important to be extremely vigilant for signs of mental ill-health among them.

Suicide is often preceded by an ”up” period.
True! A depressed person is often unable to act. But once the depression wears off, their energy can return, bringing with it the greater risk of suicide.

Suicide is more likely in people who have previously attempted it.
True! Research shows a strong and lasting correlation between previous suicide attempts and completed suicide.

Suicide is more common around birthdays and other festive occasions.
True! A thesis published by Karolinska Institutet has shown that young people between the ages of 10 and 24 were more likely to commit acts of suicide over a two-week period close to their birthdays.

Suicide is often based on rational thoughts about the value of life.
False! Most acts of suicide take place under the influence of a mental disorder or drug abuse. Many suicide attempts are also made impulsively, before the person has had time to think things through.

It’s impossible to stop a person who’s made their mind up to commit suicide.
False! 85-90 per cent of those who have made serious suicide attempts do not complete it. Many suicide survivors ask themselves: ”What was I thinking?”

Having a stomach pump is so nasty that it deters people from taking new overdoses.
False! A person close to suicide who takes an overdose doesn’t reason like that. The only thought they have is a desire to escape their anguish or pain, where an overdose is the only way out.

Sweden has one of the world’s highest suicide rates.
False! Sweden’s suicide statistics are comparable to the rest of Europe. On a 90-nation list of percentage suicide rates amongst people between the ages of 15 and 19, Sweden ranks no. 57.

Everyone who tries to take their own life must be sick.
True! There’s almost always some form of mental illness behind suicide, but it can also be triggered in young people by events that, to an adult, might seem trivial.

Sources: Barn i utsatta livssituationer, chapter by Britta Alin Åkerman (editor Jane Brodin), Gleerups 2008. | Oxford textbook of suicidology and suicide prevention. A global perspective by Danuta Wasserman and Camilla Wasserman, Oxford University Press 2009. | National Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention of Mental lll-Health (NASP).

Advice to adults living or working around young people
Always take time to listen to young people when they want to talk, even if it’s in the middle of the night or when you’re busy.
Let them know that they can and should talk about their feelings.
Don’t belittle their feelings by saying things like ”a lot of people feel that”.
Don’t be afraid to talk openly about difficult emotions and experiences.
Take their depressive symptoms seriously.
Promote good relations with the school/parents.
School staff should show that they care about young people by finding out the reasons for their truancy, and by making time to talk to those who show signs of depression.
Include information about suicide and mental health in all school subjects (e.g. the effects of stress on the body in biology classes, existential issues in Swedish/English classes and suicide statistics in maths classes).

”Red pill” and ”black pill”
See also: Red pill and blue pill
The idea of the ”red pill” is an allusion that is common among manosphere communities, as well as some communities outside of the manosphere. It originates from the dilemma in the movie The Matrix where the protagonist must choose whether to remain in a world of illusion (taking the blue pill) or to see the world as it really is (taking the red pill).

Among communities that use the term, the ”red pill” often refers to the core set of beliefs of that community, and people who are ”redpilled” or who have ”taken the red pill” are those who hold those beliefs. In manosphere communities such as men’s rights groups and, according to some researchers, in incel communities as well, ”taking the red pill” means seeing a world where feminism has given women too much power over men and male privilege does not exist.

The ”black pill” is an extension of the red and blue pill analogy. There is some disagreement among researchers and journalists over which beliefs are ”red pill” and which are ”black pill”, and whether the black pill ideology is a distinguishing belief of incels or if there are incels who do not subscribe to black pill ideas.

Some researchers and journalists use the term ”red pill” to refer to the set of beliefs commonly held by men’s rights’ activists, and the term ”black pill” to summarize the incel ideology as a whole.

Hoffman et al. have said that ”‘Taking the black pill’ is critical to the incel identity, since it means recognizing ‘inceldom’ as a permanent condition”. Aja Romano writing for Vox has said, ”what unites all incels is something known as the black pill”. However, researchers at the Anti-Defamation League write that there are some incels who believe in the red pill and others who believe in the black pill.

The ”black pill” generally refers to a set of commonly-held beliefs in incel communities, which include biological determinism, fatalism, and defeatism for unattractive people. Believers are referred to as being ”blackpilled”. The black pill has been described by Vox correspondent Zack Beauchamp as ”a profoundly sexist ideology that … amounts to a fundamental rejection of women’s sexual emancipation, labeling women shallow, cruel creatures who will choose only the most attractive men if given the choice”.

The term was first popularized on the blog Omega Virgin Revolt, where it represented a belief that the entire social system was broken and that one’s place in the system was not something any individual could change.

An incel who has ”taken the black pill” has adopted the belief that they are hopeless, and that their lack of success romantically and sexually is permanent regardless of any changes they might try to make to their physical appearance, personality, or other characteristics.

Researchers at the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) have said that incels can also follow the red pill ideology. Those who believe they can improve their chances with women are adherents to the red pill, whereas only incels who believe they have no power to change their position in society or chances with women are blackpilled.

The ADL writes that, among incels, the beliefs summarized as ”red pill” center around the idea that feminism has unbalanced society to favor women and give them too much power. It includes the belief that 80% of women are attracted to the top 20% of men, an application of the Pareto principle that is referred to among incels as the ”80/20 rule”, and the belief in ”hypergamy”, or that women will abandon a man if they are presented with the opportunity to have sex with or enter into a relationship with a more attractive man.

Redpilled incels believe they have the opportunity to fight back against this system which disadvantages them, which they do by trying to make themselves more attractive to women.

Conversely, blackpilled incels are those who believe they can do nothing to change their situation. The ADL writes, ”This is where the incel movement takes on characteristics of a death cult”. Those who have taken the black pill are left with few options, says the ADL: giving up on life (referred to by incels as ”LDAR”, an abbreviation for ”lie down and rot”), dying by suicide, or committing mass violence.

On the former incel subreddit /r/braincels, the term ”blackpill” was also used as a term for memes (usually images) that users shared to describe their thoughts, many of which criticized women as egocentric, cruel, and shallow.

Members of incel communities regularly use jargon and a distinct dialect. Incels often use dehumanizing and vulgar terms for women, such as ”femoids” (which they sometimes shorten to ”foids”) and ”roasties” (a reference to the labia minora, which incels falsely believe changes shape and begins to resemble sliced roast beef after a woman becomes sexually active).

Incels refer to attractive sexually active women as ”stacys”, less attractive sexually active women as ”beckys”, and attractive sexually active men as ”chads”. People who are average looking and not incels are ”normies”.

”Mogging” refers to the act of eclipsing another person in terms of physical appearance and thereby undermining them.

”Looksmaxing” is an attempt at enhancing one’s appearance by methods including getting a haircut and dressing nicely, taking steroids and working out, or undergoing plastic surgery.

The abbreviation ”NEET” refers to people who do not have jobs and are not attending school: ”not in education, employment, or training”.

Members of incel communities use many variations of the term ”incel” to refer to subgroups within the community, such as ”volcels” (voluntary celibate; someone who chooses to forego sexual intercourse), ”fakecels” (those who claim to be incel, but in reality have recently had sex or been in a relationship), and ”truecels” (true incels; men who have never had any sexual or romantic encounters).

There are also a number of race-based variations of the term ”incel” which refer to people who believe their race is the reason behind their inability to find a partner, including ”currycels” (people of South Asian ancestry) and ”ricecels” (those of Chinese or Southeast Asian backgrounds), or collectively, ”ethnicels”.

Incels are mostly male and heterosexual, and are often described as young and friendless introverts. Estimates of the size of incel communities vary, and range from the thousands, to tens of thousands, to hundreds of thousands. Some media outlets depict incels as unemployed or NEET (”not in education, employment, or training”) and living with parents.

Many sources describe incels as predominantly white. Sociologist Ross Haenfler was quoted in The Washington Post describing them as primarily white. Heidi Beirich of the Southern Poverty Law Center echoed this to NBC News, saying they are ”young, frustrated white males in their late teens into their early twenties who are having a hard time adjusting to adulthood”.

Jaki and colleagues, publishing linguistic analysis of a large incel forum in The Journal of Language Aggression and Conflict in June 2019, contended that ”contrary to what is often reported” there was no definitive evidence that the group is predominantly white, and that ”it is impossible to say whether the majority of … users are white men, but our data implies that this may be less true than expected.

They suggested that the various mentions of race on the forum ”may reflect, to some extent, the ethnic variety of the forum”. However, Hoffman and colleagues, publishing in Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, reported that a March 2020 survey of the same forum determined that most respondents self-identified as Caucasian.

Incels are mainly located in North America and Europe, although there are also incel communities for people outside the Anglosphere, such as the Italian website Il Forum dei Brutti.

The English language forums also receive much traffic from non-anglophone countries. Research published in 2020 by the Swedish Defence Research Agency (FOI) on the three largest incel forums found they had a total of about 20,000 users, with only about 1,000 who post actively. The FOI found that between 4.6 and 7.3% of the visitors to the forums originated from Sweden, though they caution this may not be accurate given the use of personal VPNs.

The incel subculture includes people who are in sexless marriages (or other sexless relationships) but who wish to be sexually active. Asexual people and those who are voluntarily sexually abstinent are not considered incels.

”Involuntary celibacy” is not a medical or psychological condition.

Some people who identify as incel have physical disabilities or psychological disorders such as depression, anxiety, autism spectrum disorder, and body dysmorphic disorder.

Some visitors of incel forums attribute their inability to find a partner to physical or mental ailments, while some others attribute it to extreme introversion. Many incels engage in self-diagnosis of mental health issues, and members of incel communities often discourage posters who post about mental illness from seeing therapists or otherwise seeking treatment.

Some incels with severe depression are also suicidal, and some members of incel communities encourage suicidal members to kill themselves, sometimes recommending they commit acts of mass violence before doing so.


What is alienation?

Alienation occurs when a person withdraws or becomes isolated from their environment or from other people. People who show symptoms of alienation will often reject loved ones or society. They may also show feelings of distance and estrangement, including from their own emotions.

Alienation is a complex, yet common condition. It’s both sociological and psychological, and can affect your health and aggravate existing medical conditions. Treatment involves diagnosing the cause of alienation, and following through with treatment.

Read on to learn more about the symptoms, types, and causes of alienation and what the next steps are.

What are the symptoms of alienation?
Feeling distanced from work, family, and friends is a common symptom of alienation. Other symptoms include:

feeling helpless
feeling that the world is empty or meaningless
feeling left out of conversations or events
feeling different or separate from everyone else
having difficulty approaching and speaking with others, especially parents
feeling unsafe when interacting with others
refusing to obey rules

There can also be symptoms of depression that include:

having a poor appetite or overeating,
sleeping excessively or having insomnia
being fatigued
lacking self-worth
having feelings of hopelessness

What are the types of alienation?
Alienation is a complex condition that affects many people. There are six common types.

Type Definition
cultural estrangement feeling removed from established values
isolation having a sense of loneliness or exclusion, such as being a minority in a group
meaninglessness being unable to see meaning in actions, relationships, or world affairs, or having a sense that life has no purpose
normlessness feeling disconnected from social conventions, or engaging in deviant behavior
powerlessness believing that actions have no effect on outcomes, or that you have no control over your life

self-estrangement being out of touch with yourself in different ways, mostly being unable to form your own identity.

What causes alienation?
Alienation can have many causes, from psychological disorders to social situations.

Health-related causes
Alienation can be the result of a mental or physical condition. Possible health-related causes of alienation include:

mental health disorders, such as anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, and schizophrenia
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
self-stigma as a result of mental illness
conditions that cause chronic pain
any conditions that may cause a person to feel singled out or disconnected
When alienation has health-related causes, there will typically be other symptoms that persist for more than a few days. Talk to a doctor if you’re concerned about any symptoms.

Social causes
Social causes are typically defined by how you, or someone you know, feels disconnected from other people, their environment, or themselves. For example, a change in your environment, like changing jobs or schools, can cause alienation.

Job-related causes
Work alienation occurs when a person feels estranged from what they produce in the workplace. This disconnection may cause dissatisfaction and a feeling of alienation from:

the work they do
their coworkers
the environment
themselves
Causes in adolescents
Alienation is common among teenagers. It can also be a side effect of:

attachment to a parent or caregiver in early childhood
big changes in their comfort zone
bullying or peer victimization
growing up
As children grow, they may begin to distrust adults or the values they were raised with. Teens can often feel isolated from their parents, teachers, and peers. They may feel anxious about their social skills or physical appearance. Teens can even feel isolated from their own identity. This can happen as they discover themselves and think about their future.

Adolescent alienation is only considered a symptom if it accompanies other disorders, such as a phobia or a personality disorder.

Parental causes
Parental alienation is a term that broadly describes negative, alienating behaviors displayed by a parent, like not being present. Parental alienation syndrome describes a psychiatric disorder in children, particularly in the context of divorce. Sometimes it can be an explanation for a child’s refusal to visit a parent.

Rejection of a parent has multiple factors. These can include interactions from both parents and feelings of vulnerability from the child.

This is not the same alienation that a child may feel toward a parent who is abusive, particularly if the child severs ties with that parent as an adult.

How is alienation treated?
To treat alienation, the cause must be identified. People who experience psychological pain because of alienation may benefit from seeing a mental health professional. Gaining a feeling of empowerment may also help a person battle alienation.

For adolescents, a sense of purpose is an asset. But searching for that purpose can induce stress. Researchers suggest that parental support can help teens who experience alienation due to feelings of purposelessness.

Research also shows that a strong parent-child relationship can help a child cope with bullying. This is another possible cause of alienation during childhood.

What are the complications of alienation?
Feeling alienated can lead to many different social problems that include:

drug or alcohol abuse
t
ruancy
criminal activity
poor school or work performance

Alienation may also increase symptoms of mental and physical disorders that can include:

psychological pain, including anger and depression
health effects from drug or alcohol abuse
eating disorders
attempted suicide
While alienation can increase feelings of powerlessness and estrangement, it’s important talk to someone, especially if you’ve recently had thoughts of suicide.

What should you do if you or someone you know is experiencing alienation?
Seek help or advice from a mental healthcare professional if you’re concerned about alienation. Alienation may be a symptom of an underlying cause. Sometimes it can be a side effect of a new experience or environment and will pass with time.

It may also help to open up other avenues of support. If you feel comfortable doing so, talk to your friends and family. You can also show support for someone you know by reaching out and spending time with them. In cases of parental alienation, your next steps may involve counseling sessions.

Heidegger and ontological alienation
In the twentieth century, the notion of alienation assumed much attention, particularly in existential philosophy.

Martin Heidegger, for example, focused on a kind of “ontological alienation” in which human beings are often “fallen” in their own modes of understanding.

Heidegger analyzes certain phenomena such as “idle talk,” “everydayness,” and “the they.”

Briefly stated, idle talk or chatter occurs whenever a topic or subject is discussed in the everyday attitude of ‘the they’. In other words, the subject is talked about as “the already known”; for instance, as in, “you know what they say.” ‘The they’, then, represents a kind of anonymous authority who are “in the know.” In such a mode, there is nothing new to question or discover for it has all already been said and so merely needs to be repeated.

Heidegger contrasts this alienated or fallen understanding with his concept of authenticity. In authenticity, a more original mode of questioning occurs as a kind of openness or wonder to that which is under discussion. The alienation of idle talk is overcome through an authentic discourse which makes the subject under discussion one’s own. As Heidegger says, “Idle talk is the possibility of understanding everything without previously making the thing one’s own.”

It is precisely making this thing one’s own, in one’s own self-understanding, that an authentic understanding is achieved.


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說書
說書
「故事」的書評專區,關於閱讀,與閱讀的人。 如果閱讀是生活的態度,那書評絕對是優雅的試煉。
文/伊俞(古書店住客)
本文與【故事‧說書】合作刊載
原先我一想到自己一死,生前那個經驗寶藏勢必隨之陪葬而悲從中來,但現在想到,如果長生不死,獨自扛著那發霉的、壓迫人的、褪色殘缺的記憶重擔也教人難受。也許最好的辦法是:在上天賜給我仍能健在的時間裡,繼續將訊息留在瓶中傳給後世之人,然後平靜地等待著被聖方濟稱為姊妹的死神到來。
──安伯托‧艾可,〈死亡的缺憾與好處〉,收入《倒退的年代》(年)

就在 年台北國際書展進入尾聲之際,從世界另一端的地中海沿岸,傳來了作家安伯托‧艾可辭世的噩耗。

此時此刻,當我們回想艾可,立即浮現眼前的多半是他最早為世人所熟知的兩部小說:《玫瑰的名字 年],或許還有史恩康納萊 主演的同名電影)和《傅科擺》 年,以及它們帶給讀者的從困惑不解到嘆為觀止的各種不同感受;小說之外則是宛如剃刀般鋒利的專欄雜文,有時正言莊論,更多則出以詼諧仿諷,教人哭笑不得卻也不得不拍案叫絕;至於文學、語言學、社會科學、大眾傳播科系的研究生們,則有機會直接與艾可有所創發,成為權威與重鎮的符號語言學理論對話,或至少讀過他所編纂的《美的歷史》(年)與《醜的歷史》年。

本文作者對語言學與大眾傳播理論所知有限,對於艾可在符號學方面的成就,自然不敢妄作評議;但大學時既以歷史為本科,平日又以閱讀文學作品為嗜好,因此仍不顧淺陋,按照時間順序向讀者簡短介紹這位在學術殿堂與文學創作都獲得非凡成就,並且終生不懈地探索文字與知識極限、破解歷史與社會密碼的大師。

跳進水溝躲槍子兒
年 月 日,艾可出生於義大利西北部皮埃蒙特 的亞歷山卓亞,父親是五金公司的會計,母親也是該公司的職員,因此艾可將自己的家庭背景歸類為小資產階級。他的童年是在墨索里尼法西斯政權統治下度過的,和同年紀的男孩一樣愛玩戰爭遊戲,崇拜少年先鋒隊的制服,也曾撰寫過歌頌法西斯黨人和墨索里尼的作文,在地區及全國競賽中得獎;但他每天也在祖父家的地下室花幾個小時,閱讀從凡爾納、馬可波羅、達爾文 到少年冒險漫畫的各種書籍,也曾在戰爭期間的某個午後騎著單車在空蕩蕩的城市來回穿梭,尋找一本正好買得起的法文翻譯書。

艾可在一篇從 年開始撰寫 年完稿的文章〈我的家鄉〉裡記下了他所見的家鄉特色,以及他對亞歷山卓亞的眷戀:這個崇尚貿易的城市不誇大其詞也不講究奇蹟,既沒有熱情也沒有使命感,這裡的人寡言少語,甚至不願稱呼他人的名字,但他們不懂說謊,相信機緣巧合;這是以吃苦耐勞的利古里亞人作為自我認同的艾可始終感到自豪的,不僅在捍衛個人隱私不受科技與傳媒侵害時一再引述家鄉不稱呼他人名字的風俗,機緣巧合的概念也一直影響著他,日後更出版一部以此為名的文集,探討錯誤信念如何改變歷史(《機緣巧合:語言與混亂》年)。

雖然義大利在英美盟軍登陸後轉而加入同盟國,但納粹德國迅速介入,扶持墨索里尼在北義大利建立傀儡政權,戰爭因而延長;避難到鄉間的艾可除了逐漸認清法西斯政權的真相,也得使盡全力在納粹親衛隊、法西斯軍隊和反抗軍的戰火中「我陷入法西斯和游擊隊的火網時,也學會了跳進水溝躲避衝鋒槍的槍子兒。」,以及糧食短缺下掙扎求生,直到解放日來臨。

他在這段日子裡看見許多人被迫或自願加入法西斯陣營的歷程,也看見義大利人雖然不願再戰卻又對外國入侵同仇敵愾的心情。由於義大利中途倒向英美一方,二戰之後對法西斯的清算規模遠小於德國、日本,於是在右派基督教民主黨長期壟斷政權之際,新法西斯勢力也力圖再起,這同樣是艾可見聞經歷,銘記於心的歷史事實。

開始發聲,取得一席之地
戰後,艾可加入天主教青年團,隨後前往皮埃蒙特首府杜林 就讀大學,他在青年團一直待到二十二歲,一度名列全國領袖,後來因抗議教宗碧岳十二世 的保守政策而放棄天主教信仰,自此信從不可知論,以俗世道德為準繩。但他對聖經與神學仍深入鑽研 年以聖道茂‧阿奎納 的研究在杜林大學獲得哲學博士,隨後將博士論文擴充成第一本專書《聖道茂‧阿奎納的美學》 年出版。

Borges was rooted in the Modernism predominant in its early years and was influenced by Symbolism.

Like Vladimir Nabokov and James Joyce, he combined an interest in his native culture with broader perspectives, also sharing their multilingualism and inventiveness with language.

However, while Nabokov and Joyce tended toward progressively larger works, Borges remained a miniaturist.

His work progressed away from what he referred to as ”the baroque”: his later style is far more transparent and naturalistic than his earlier works.

Borges represented the humanist view of media that stressed the social aspect of art driven by emotion. If art represented the tool, then Borges was more interested in how the tool could be used to relate to people.

Existentialism saw its apogee during the years of Borges’s greatest artistic production. It has been argued that his choice of topics largely ignored existentialism’s central tenets. Critic Paul de Man notes, ”Whatever Borges’s existential anxieties may be, they have little in common with Sartre’s robustly prosaic view of literature, with the earnestness of Camus’ moralism, or with the weighty profundity of German existential thought. Rather, they are the consistent expansion of a purely poetic consciousness to its furthest limits.”

Mathematics
Main article: Borges and mathematics
The essay collection Borges y la Matemática (Borges and Mathematics, 2003) by Argentine mathematician and writer Guillermo Martínez, outlines how Borges used concepts from mathematics in his work.

Martínez states that Borges had, for example, at least a superficial knowledge of set theory, which he handles with elegance in stories such as ”The Book of Sand”. Other books such as The Unimaginable Mathematics of Borges’ Library of Babel by William Goldbloom Bloch (2008) and Unthinking Thinking: Jorge Luis Borges, Mathematics, and the New Physics by Floyd Merrell (1991) also explore this relationship.

Philosophy
Fritz Mauthner, philosopher of language and author of the Wörterbuch der Philosophie (Dictionary of Philosophy), had an important influence on Borges.

Borges always recognized the influence of this German philosopher. According to the literary review Sur, the book was one of the five books most noted and read by Borges. The first time that Borges mentioned Mauthner was in 1928 in his book The language of the Argentines (El idioma de los argentinos). In a 1962 interview Borges described Mauthner as possessing a fine sense of humor as well as great knowledge and erudition.

In an interview, Denis Dutton asked Borges who were the ”philosophers who have influenced your works, in whom you’ve been the most interested”. In reply, Borges named Berkeley and Schopenhauer. He was also influenced by Spinoza, about whom Borges wrote a famous poem

It is not without humour that Borges once wrote “Siempre imaginé que el Paraíso sería algún tipo de biblioteca.” (I always imagined Paradise to be some kind of a library.)

Fritz Mauthner (22 November 1849 – 29 June 1923) was an Austro-Hungarian novelist, theatre critic and satirist. He was an exponent of philosophical scepticism derived from a critique of human knowledge and of philosophy of language.

Mauthner was born on 22 November 1849 into an assimilated, well-to-do Jewish family from Horzitz in Bohemia (now Hořice in the Czech Republic). He was the fourth of the six children of Emmanuel and Amalie Mauthner.

He became editor of the Berliner Tageblatt in 1895, but is remembered mainly for his Beiträge zu einer Kritik der Sprache (Contributions to a Critique of Language), published in three parts in 1901 and 1902. Ludwig Wittgenstein took several of his ideas from Mauthner, and acknowledges him in his Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus (1922).

Mauthner died in Meersburg am Bodensee on 29 June 1923.

The Dodo is a fictional character appearing in Chapters 2 and 3 of the 1865 book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson).

The Dodo is a caricature of the author. A popular but unsubstantiated belief is that Dodgson chose the particular animal to represent himself because of his stammer, and thus would accidentally introduce himself as ”Do-do-dodgson”.

Historically, the Dodo was a non-flying bird that lived on the island of Mauritius, east of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean.

It became extinct in the mid 17th century during the colonisation of the island by the Dutch.

Disneyland
Both Umberto Eco and Jean Baudrillard refer to Disneyland as an example of hyperreality. Eco believes that Disneyland with its settings such as Main Street and full sized houses has been created to look ”absolutely realistic”, taking visitors’ imagination to a ”fantastic past”.

This false reality creates an illusion and makes it more desirable for people to buy this reality. Disneyland works in a system that enables visitors to feel that technology and the created atmosphere ”can give us more reality than nature can”.

The ”fake nature” of Disneyland satisfies our imagination and daydream fantasies in real life. The idea is that nothing in this world is real. Nothing is original, but all are endless copies of reality.

Since we do not imagine the reality of simulations, both imagined and real are equally hyperreal, for example, the numerous simulated rides, including the submarine ride and the Mississippi boat tour. When entering Disneyland, consumers form into lines to gain access to each attraction. Then they are ordered by people with special uniforms to follow the rules, such as where to stand or where to sit. If the consumers follow each rule correctly, they can enjoy ”the real thing” and see things that are not available to them outside of Disneyland’s doors.

In his work Simulacra and Simulation, Baudrillard argues the ”imaginary world” of Disneyland magnetizes people inside and has been presented as ”imaginary” to make people believe that all its surroundings are ”real”. But he believes that the Los Angeles area is not real; thus it is hyperreal. Disneyland is a set of apparatuses which tries to bring imagination and fiction to what is called ”real”. This concerns the American values and way of life in a sense and ”concealing the fact that the real is no longer real, and thus of saving the reality principle.”

”The Disneyland imaginary is neither true or false: it is a deterrence machine set up in order to rejuvenate in reverse the fiction of the real. Whence the debility, the infantile degeneration of this imaginary. It’s meant to be an infantile world, in order to make us believe that the adults are elsewhere, in the ”real” world, and to conceal the fact that real childishness is everywhere, particularly among those adults who go there to act the child in order to foster illusions of their real childishness.”

“This is what happens when you work to change things, and first they think you’re crazy, then they fight you, and then all of a sudden you change the world.”

Quote: Elisabeth Holmes