Sunday, February 28, 2010

Local theory

Sorry im a day late!

Local Theory on Social Needs

A typical need to build a theory based on her expereince!

Tuesday 7th March 2006

Human beings in general have two kinds of social needs. One is to identify oneself with others, empathise and belong to a group-the need for belongingness. Another is the need to distinguish oneself from others…reinforce one’s own uniqueness, one’s exclusiveness in one’s own mind…to feel special and different. The two needs coexist. Perhaps when a population is almost uniform and kind of homogeneous …when people in it are nearly similar, the need for distinguishing oneself gains more importance. But when there are a lot of differences…socio economic cultural etc. the need for belonging becomes greater. I don’t know if it is true for greater systems but in my personal experience I guess it is so.

Basically I arrived at this from the seemingly weird way in which so much stratification happened in my school while so little existed in a larger school that my friend went to.

In my school almost all the children came from the same socio economic background...elite, middleclass and upper middle class and upper class. No first generation literates, all westernised having educated parents with TVs, fridges, vehicles etc. My friend’s school had representatives from all sections of society, ranging from children of the poor to those of the rich, from the children of the illiterate to the highly educated families, and yet, at least according to my friend, there was barely any stratification. Even if there was it was none too rigid. Perhaps when the kids are from such varying and diverse backgrounds, there was a greater need to bridge the existing gaps and identify with each other. Whereas in my school, perhaps there was need to MAGNIFY the existing differences to make one feel unique and special. There were socio economic differences, who’s rich, who’s kool and who’s ‘in’. That’s what it was I guess.

12th March 2006

My theory is becoming stronger and stronger. In everything I read I find it or ideas leading to it and its becoming broader too.

My theory is that when there is a lot of homogeneity to start with people begin to feel too common and their need to distinguish themselves becomes IMMENSE. Thus conflicts are greater in small intimate social groups as (Georg Siramel noted) because they share a sense of belonging, of identity. This could also be because each of us has a part in us that detests what we are …everything we stand for…thanatos. (death drive)

This was my understanding of Vimal Aunty’s explanation about how people tend to get angrier with others when they do something they themselves have done. There is a great sense of indignation when a person identifies oneself with the act. Perhaps this boils down to a need to change. I guess the basic need could be a need to change .perhaps the belonging identity and the differentiation / specialisation need are both manifestations of the need to change.

Anyway coming back to my theory, there is a greater need for identity and belonging in a highly heterogeneous group. Thus as people fulfil their needs a homogeneous groups becomes heterogeneous and a heterogeneous group becomes homogeneous all in cycles, its more or less like the theory of ‘incoherent homogeneity’ to ‘coherent heterogeneity’. In fact IT is that.

Somehow I feel I’ve complicated life…I started off with ‘identity’ as ‘belongingness’ and ‘group identity’ and ended up with it being ‘individual identity’ or the need to specialise. I guess basic needs could then just be identity. Maybe I should leave this obsession for a while, study sociology with an open mind, sans bias and come back to it later if I still want to.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

College Tensions and School Days

16th February 2006
I recall the tension her whole group in college went through over this incident. I hope the ‘contestants’ are now ok with each other.

High anxiety
Oh God! It’s so HORRIBLE. One boy in my class TRULY, REALLY WANTS TO KILL another chap. And who wouldn’t? If I were him and the other chap had done that to me ACTUALLY BEATEN UP by the police for no fault of mine by BRIBING the police…wouldn’t I hate him so much! If I were humiliated and treated as a gunda by the police after all the good things I’d done and got blamed and beaten for the other chaps faults while he sat on a chair and watched. Wouldn’t I hate like that?
WHY WAS I SO INSENSITIVE? I didn’t realise it was so serious a problem…I thought it was a joke and showed it too. How can he be calmed down?
God I hope he forgets ‘coz if he does something as vengeance he'll have to pay for that too…probably spend his life in jail or get killed by gunda politicians.
The worst part is that they’re both my friends. Not so much the second chap-he’s too crazy and unpredictable actually.
But this first guy is a good friend of of my few close friends at Nizam’s though he’s crazy as well. I hope he has the good sense to keep out of the vengeance mode.
I hope I didn’t hurt him today-guess he won't be bothered thinking of what I said and did. He’s too busy!

17th February 2006
School Reunion
We had a ‘school reunion’ –some four or five of us. Divya ,Neelam, Neha,Amrita and Vidharshana. Never met Neelam after school. We had a real nice time. They were all their usual some times nasty selves….but otherwise ..Actually even that… was very nice. Some strange way we have so much in common. It’s weird the way no two of us is doing the same thing. It’s really weird.
But we still have so much in common. Those memories. The understanding of the people we were the experiences we had and the ‘incidents’ that took place…Oh boy! It felt really good when we kept recalling stuff and laughing at the way we are still just the same. Neelam and I fulfilled our long unfulfilled desire of going up by lift. The teachers were very sweet. I always had a strong bonding with one or two of them. Of course one of them commented on the mischievous glint in my eyes. And Quasar (one teacher’s dog) is fine I believe. One teacher’s little daughter is suddenly so grown up. Another has had a boy cut and looks real young.

18th February 2006
School Recall
Its strange how I told Smriti and Shrae’s mom about one of my earliest memories… so openly though I knew she is not the one to appreciate my type of ‘cuteness'. I told her about how I’d celebrated one of my birthdays with the twins coz their birthday is on 21st Feb and amma had konjified me saying how for kutti babies monthly birthdays are allowed.
I must have been three or four. I remember the music hall and Thomas teacher .It was an assembly and they gave chocolates. I didn’t have any to give and I wondered why and later I realised it wasn’t my b’day and that people had only yearly birthdays. Of course I didn’t tell her in all this detail…I didn’t tell her how Amma had konjified me and told me about monthly birthdays and made me feel that birthday feeling…that special feeling of superiority . I guess it wouldn’t go with the school principal image that people have of my mom.
It’s sad how I’m only remembered as the principal’s daughter. Or even worse as one person introduced me “Amita Desai's daughter, no. sorry Lalitha Iyer’s daughter.”
I mean Amma’s in the genre of the outside woman trying to do Principalling.
And well me, I went to school before her,I’m just her daughter.
And I saw the nursery kids running and hugging their teacher and remembered how she was once the world to me and that reminded me of me..
What I meant to write was “Wow I’ve changed so! I have become so much more expressive that I can share my memories and experiences with random acquaintances. I realise why I normally feel so sad in school. I had this feeling that all the happiness I experienced there was unreal, that nobody cared for me as me but only remembered amma or akka . Talking to all these friends and teachers yesterday made me feel much better.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


She was deeply engaged in the ups and downs that her friends were living through -here's a sample of how she felt!

Monday 8th February 2006
I met this friend (who loves films and acting) on the road today and had a longish chat with her. Feeling so bad for her, it is so SAD. She’s gotten into debts and stuff. She was disgusted by the way a director was treating her. She decided to make a play herself and borrowed money. The play got cancelled. And now she has to repay it all. Poor thing. This director really exploited her. I believe the whole idea for his newest film is actually her concept. When she’d gone to Mumbai she'd gone on a crazy walk around the town, really sad and all. She’d written about this and asked him to read the stuff. He read it and said it was nice and that he’d adapt it to Hyderabad. As usual the dubbing was before her exams. He told her the recording would be on a particular day. When she called him the day before, he coolly says “Your voice is not good, your accent is not good, I got an RJ (?)" to do the recording”.
CRAP! She wrote the whole goddammed script, he plagiarised it. She was looking forward tot eh voice bit coz otherwise it’s just a girl walking around town. The dialogues were close to her heart.
She didn’t even know about the screening at HCU. He is such a CHEAP BASTARD. I hope that one day she becomes a great actress while this chap remains a nobody. That would be so cool!

Still 8th
Spoke to another friend today. She seems to be feeling so SAD. It’s so horrible…she’s feeling so low about her new college…about the way people treat her there. They think she is dumb and stiff. The way she’s failing her exams and stuff and how they‘d probably think they are right in thinking she’s dumb.
I think after the old college –and the high that comes with it- the way she was respected and valued and admired there-it must be really tough.
It’s horrible even to imagine; poor thing she is feeling lonely and all. She went and watched Rang De Basanti alone.
She was s’posed to meet a friend today at a certain time. And when she got there this chap was still at home! She wants company, she needs friends.
And another chap she liked sent her an email ending that he was sorry about her grandmother and asking if she was very close to her! I believe she started crying and didn’t reply for a week. I can understand the feeling the unsaid part.
I can understand the feeling. I sympathise fully. But I dunno if I conveyed that. I’m such a COLD person .if I am all the sympathy giving source she has it must be tragic. But I bet she has other sources. She is such a friendly person.

Monday 6th February
I’m feeling real bad about the way I treat this friend… how I hardly ever think of her, how I’m goddam selfish, how I’m barely ever true to her. Gosh 1 I hate this. I victimise her the way I believe some others victimised me. I kinda exploit her and yet she is so faithful and nice and concerned and all. She is a very caring person and is equally sensitive. I’m sure I’ve hurt her innumerable times and in spite of that she remains so caring.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Dangers on the Road and More Films

I do remember how shocked she was,poor thing! Also rememeber how her sister slapped someone for annoying her on the Tank Bund.I felt worried of course since they both rode bikes and came home at all hours!

And for a person agonising over exams she seems to had time for lots of films!
We saw Didier and RDB together.
BTW I am posting on Friday coz I wont have access to the internet tomorrow in my travels.

Tuesday February 7th 2006
"Eve teasing"!
God its DISGUSTING, REPULSIVE. I dunno how to describe it even. I was coming back home on my bike…helmet on my head and all…it would have been tough to realise I was a female and all except for my flowery Salwar Kameez which made it evident I guess. There was this bike behind me, just on the street next to ours…he was coming towards my bike ..I thought it was just plain bad driving. So I moved to the side-that BASTARD had the AUDACITY to nearly hit my bike, put out his hand and touch the breast region of my salwar kameez.
God! Its so HORRIBLE. So DANGEROUS…Right street from home..and this for a girl on a bike wearing a helmet,hardly feminine. DAMN. Its so YUCK. I was SO shocked I just stopped there for two goddam minutes looking back a the moron who drove away. I thought of noting the number ..a moment too late. He had turned the corner. I was so SHOCKED it took me two minutes to think of following and noting the the time I reached the street corner he was nowhere to be seen.
It’s so HORRIBLE and YUCK. It’s DISGUSTING.I FEEL SICK. I WANTED AT FRIST TO CALL Amma and tell her. But then I realised that I’d probably forget it and she will get all anxious and worked up and stuff. It is so horrible.
Why? Was the guy some sort of sex obsessed moron who randomly targeted girls on bikes? Was it a dare? The madness of youth, as I was thinking in the criminology class? Jeez. How sick is that?
I’m gonna change my clothes watch TV and forget it all. I must tell Amma this but I guess ill tell her when she gets back home. God, its so horrid, I have to go to French class library today .I'm scared. This happened in BROAD DAY LIGHT on a deserted road ..

Thursday, January 26th 2006
Saw this movie (on DVD) called Didier. It’s absolutely marvellous. All of us thoroughly enjoyed it. Even Appa though he doesn’t know any French. ‘Twas darned nice about a lab who becomes human and then dog again. Darned cute and the guy who played Didier acted SO WELL. You could really feel he was a large clumsy Labrador…gnawing his hand, going around in circles before sitting, scratching his ears with his hind foot, it was hilarious especially the stuff he did as footballer.

Friday, 27th January 2006
Rang De Basanti
Saw RDB today-it was really well made. What do I say? It made me feel bad. The camera work, the cinematography, the sounds, the music, the acting ---all that was excellent. So were the basic concepts…very touching the way crazy history keeps repeating itself meaninglessly.
I understood Baghat Singh, Chandrasekhar, Azad… and them dying for liberty. That makes sense. ..not really…its grotesque, HORRIBLE. The little boy watching everybody die at Jallinawalbagh..not just die , MURDERED, KILLED, MASSACRED. Horrible. Growing up...violence is the only answer.
What happened then/ the pilot died. The defence minister was assassinated. Aamir Khan on his bike…Chandrasekhar Azad. The craziest thing is they become their roles, as though they were reborn. Is it heroism in them? Or is it just bravado aggression and madness of youth?
The first part of the movie makes one feel so futile… so bad about how today’s youth has no fire, no zeal left. All we have is virakthi and laziness and being resigned to one’s fate. Just drunkenness, discos, rash driving, bizarre hairdos, tattoos, clothing, smoking, drugs...above all a sorrow at all this…leading to the empty purposeless feeling.
Oh well basically it was a well made film. The past and present blended so well. Its very complex, dunno how to put it into words.

February 4th 2006
Saw Legally Blonde. This made me think of Janet Bond. I should get around to finishing that someday.