Originally Posted by Geezer
This is a good thread, potentially
the most important of the "Old Guard" threads of the last few days, and overlaps with a number.
There is a contrast between the "analysers" and the "emoters". I'm afraid that I run on gut feeling, not detailed knowledge, and for all the threads that I've read on tailoring techniques or shoe construction, I tend to focus on the end product, rather than the process. As a mild extrovert, I
think I am in touch with my emotions and deeply charming, whereas the others are anal-retentive boring nerds. The latter may well think I'm a superficial prick
, We are both
right and equally wrong, and should respect each other and focus on what unites us, not what divides. I still have no great idea how a shoe is made, but I know which shoes I buy.
On classism, all British people are born with an MBA in it. I was staggered decades ago by the way that Molloy in "Dress for Success" was so overt with his proposition that if you wanted to get on, you should dress like a member of the upper-middle class. Not that he was wrong, but that he was so honest in print, violating a rule of British hypocrisy (all people are hypocrites, and it is the lubricant of most societies) to not talk about stuff like that and to pretend it is not true.
I'm a mild optimist though on Foo's depressing analysis. Yes, "we" are outnumbered. But every generation has thought that it was now facing Total Decline Into Barbarism (inc. Plato's). What is happening is that formal wear and black tie are supplanted by lounge suit, lounge suit by business casual, and so on. But I would not have thought years ago that Knightsbridge hedgies would be getting their business casual made bespoke. And they are.
There is without doubt on this forum a tension between baroque/mannerist (Spoo? NORE?), neo-claccisicism (Foo, Manton), and something that might be modernism or post-modernism (whatever happens in SWD). But that, or some variant thereof, is a good thing.
A few important distinctions I think are worth emphasizing.
Being analytical about the conflict between classic men's dress and contemporary social norms and moral psychology does not require one to be analytical about how he dresses.
Also, being analytical does not mean one is not influenced by emotion. There are many theories as to what emotions are, but I see no reason why following logic or one's emotions represents an either/or proposition. Emotions can be viewed as inputs to one's logical thought process. I feel X, so I do Y to achieve Z, which will serve X, etc. A truly analytical person must recognize that all of his logical reasoning cannot directly uncover any empirical facts (though it might direct him to which is best to believe in). Emotions belong in the empirical realm. They are reactions to material things and events. So, there is no necessary conflict being emotional and logical. In fact, I posit that it may be impossible
to think illogically--what we call illogical may simply be a sudden recognition of new empirical information one did not have before, which may change of obfuscate one's situation, and therefore his logical calculus as well.
On a similar note, I don't think being analytical about dress makes a person any more rigid. Being "emotional" about how one dresses can be equally restricting: "Yellow makes me sad, so I will never wear yellow." A simplistic example, but you can take it further on your own.
"Class" does not necessarily refer to socioeconomic class. The Dubiously Honored are also a class. Anything you can categorically distinguish from everything else is a sort of class.
Originally Posted by Fuuma
It is also rich that Foo, who just made a reference to the master-slave dialectic, would say I am using metalanguage too heavily.
To be fair, the master and slave is a theme that has dominated continental philosophy since Hegel. Also, the terms are colorfully transparent--I think a reasonably well-educated person can easily get at their general meanings in the context of discussion. Now, if anyone is confused by my usage of them, I would be happy to explicate.