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Mainstream Personal Identity, Marginal Identity Politics, and the Fringe
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by Edward K. Brown II

Within society there are a series of vicinages, each with a cultural center determined to champion its instituted freedom of will in trade and human rights. This resolve is exemplified in the seasonal fashion trends modeled on the runways of world-system commerce and policy. This determination is in direct response to a flux between two types of societal shifts: virtual and actual.

Virtual shifts are cognitive adjustments made in consideration to a schemata believed to enhance the fruition of a desired life "style." Virtual shifts are caused by a manufactured vision of culture. Actual shifts are behavioral adjustments made in consideration to a schemata believed to enhance a desired life experience.

Actual shifts are caused by a maneuvered sense of culture. The frequency of flux between the shifts (in society) prompts debate concerning a cultural center's ability to obtain control over virtuality and actuality in maintaining a sense of freedom. To state the concern more succinctly, conservatives and liberals strategize, make agendas, to deter or to defend life style and experience.

Conservative agendas revolve around a personality of virtual (cognitive) solidarity. Liberal agendas revolve around a politic of actual (behavioral) solidarity. Both conservative and liberal agendas, by contrast of power, instigate virtual and actual shifts within the cultural center; however, neither agenda have developed a constant solution to prevent shiftiness. This is due to the conservative relying on the adherence to virtue and the liberal relying on the opportunity to act; neither can sustain a moderate viewpoint of toleration.

What is produced from these agenda are non-solutions on how to best influence flux, and to fuse an ethic to the cultural center, either by forcefully enticing the "Other" to join the flow of the mainstream, or casting the "Other" aside to the margin--a power struggle to say the least. Those not willing to join (fuse to) an opposing and/or irresolute flow (flux), nor are interested in peripheral ventures, are virtually and/or actually sent to the fringe of the cultural center to seek an alternate form of agency. Such distanced communities also compete to develop an oppressive or influential modus operandi system (MOS) to stabilize a will that counters the perceived social imbalance of change.

A cultural center, composed of its mainstream in relation to its margins in relation to the fringe, leads itself towards an agenda that champions a shift not only to counter balance flux and fusion, but also constitute anthropomorphically an ethic in the form of a public image. This ironic attempt at creating a metaphor that composes a unified reality produces gridlock, confusion and disenchantment with virtuality, which also produces cynicism due to the reminder of actuality.

The failed attempt brings forth the call from the community for leaders and heroes to instill in the will of the people a transformation sturdy enough to prevent a domino of shifts. The result of such calls is the formulation of garrisons of alliances--consortiums. These consortiums become involved vigilantly in various forms of spin-doctoring to get their agenda regarding trade or human rights noticed by the public, be it in the method of advertising or reporting through the multimedia. Some consortiums would go so far as to resort to extreme measures to raise their agenda as a pillar in the vicinage.

What has and is evolving from the manufaction and maneuvers throughout every vicinage is a full-scale cultural war over what kind of image is to be supported, reproduced and marketed to the public. This essay reveals the tectonics of conservative and liberal agendas, describes the basic use of pundits as leaders/champions of a particular agenda and as shapers of perspectives/builders of control. Lastly, the essay explores the composition of the fringe.

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Copyright © by Edward K. Brown II
P.O. Box 2160
Philadelphia, PA 19103
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