Wednesday, 1 August 2018
Around the same time this year I was invited to make a piece for the Irish Quilters showcase with the theme of Culture. Working on two projects at the same time they seemed to meld a bit in my mind. I thought of a double spiral of text with local sayings and slang and all the ways we have to describe the rain in Ireland. But as I was doodling and sketching spirals the Yeat's poem "The Second Coming", and the line 'things fall apart, the centre cannot hold' got stuck in my head.
I thought about the rise of the right in politics, the ugly glee some people took in labelling people snowflakes, while at the same time angry about being labelled themselves and I thought self righteousness is really ugly - both left and right. I was reminded of a TED talk by Jonathon Haidt where he looked at the traits of conservatives and liberals and I took away a few things from that talk. All human beings care about being Fair, about doing no Harm and Caring for each other. Liberals place a lot of value on Fairness and Equality. Conservatives care about these things too but also care about Community, Authority and Purity. Some Conservatives care about what you do with your body and some Liberals care very much about what you put in your body or on your body. When you see passion at both extremes and name calling and violence you wonder how important is the centre?