Their concern is not with themselves but with the group and how the group is faring

“I once watched a highly intelligent Pueblo Indian engaged in intercultural education programs struggle and sweat to put into words a problem he and his people were having to cope with. vulturesWhenever a white man is put down in the middle of a pueblo, the Indians must cope with his narcissism as expressed by his almost total preoccupation with how HE is doing (providing he is well motivated) or how HE is being treated (if he is less idealistic).

Regardless of motives, behavior of this sort is threatening and disruptive to Pueblo life, because the Indians are just the opposite. Their concern is not with themselves but with the group and how the group is faring.

The Indians see what we call narcissism in all whites ““ a trait that goes far beyond and is much more inclusive than self-love and individual differences. Since the Pueblo Indians themselves are not this way, how can they describe what they themselves do not include in their experience?

And what does the well-motivated concerned white man do when he has devoted much of his life to “helping“ the Indians only to discover that cultural insight reveals him as a disruptive force in Pueblo life, even though he considers himself an ally?

Why hadn’t any of his Pueblo friends told him this?”

Beyond Culture, Edward T. Hall, pg 153, Copyright 1976

The Pursuit of Attention – Quotes

The pursuit of attention is now emerging as one of the electric organizing principles of American life. Not only are people pursuing attention in new ways, but there is evidence that we have begun to restructure our culture – including even our politics and economy – around the idea of attention as a glittering ultimate recognition and reward. Celebrities are the icons, but the pursuit of attention is now being diffused and institutionalized, hardwired into our beings through new systems of media, business, and technology, and fueled by new, aching deprivations that prey on our psyches. The result is a spreading virus of prosaic but dehumanizing behavior that subtly alienates us from one another and turns daily interactions into a veiled competition for recognition and respect.

– Introduction to The Pursuit of Attention, second edition, by Charles Derber. 1979, 2000

All my stripper friends
All my ex-boyfriends
We all want the same thing
We all want the same thing
Parties in the bar, reaching for the stars
We all want the same thing

All My Stripper Friends, Tila Tequila