I’d already read the Atlantic article of Between the World and Me, and read it again after your suggestion. To be honest I found it baleful and conspiratorial. The end kind of saves it with a Christian-like “we’re all struggling but some more than others”. Though rather than a cosmic evil or an entropic universe his struggle is against a white conspiracy beyond the knowledge and intention of most of those involved. One of the issues with subjective experiences as we’re discussing them is that they can be annihilated when in contact with an opposing one. At the time I also read Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s response, a more optimistic reading of America despite her subjective plight being obviously more violent and horrible than Coates’.
Two topics have been rolling around in my head since reading your letter. Can subjective experience add up to an objective indictment? And what is the role of exploitation in history? Continue reading #42 On objective exploitation