In many instances, individuals are obligated to use their minds as a source of imagination and emotion. Many believe that our mind is the source of our freedom due to the different ideas it gives individuals. However, our mind limits our freedom by creating a fence on our individuality and morals. Freedom in many cases is a feeling of access and a power to act without obstacles. Our mind is made up of thoughts, imagination and emotions. Access and imagination are discussed in Cathy Davidson’s “Project Classroom Makeover” where she conceals the fact that individuality is limited.
Meanwhile, Maggie Nelson in her passage “Great to Watch” discusses how individuals are using cruelty as a way to fit in. In Azar Nafisi’s “Selections of Lolita in Tehran” Nafisi creates a world of color to escape from the darkness of the society that she lives in. Why does the mind limit our freedom? Individuals may be affected by personal or societal expectations which causes them to assimilate. Individuals are surrounded by fences that limits their imagination and individuality. The mind limits individuality because of the need for individuals to fit in.
Individuals are prevented from having morals due to the technology that they are growing up with. This is shown in Nelson’s “Great to Watch” where individuals copied an image and altered it due to its popularity. As stated in the text “Satirical posters that appeared throughout the New York subways not long after the Abu Ghraib story broke, posters that borrowed the distinctive design of Apple’s iPod campaign, but substituted the word ‘iRaq’ for ‘iPod and featured the silhouette of the hooded man in lieu of the iPod’s silhouetted dancer” (Nelson 304).
Nelson implies that popularity is the eason why people’s minds are altered. The alteration of the mind causes individuals to lose their own ideas and lose their individuality. It is shown that individuals assimilate to become part of a group. Nelson suggests that individuals are not understanding the meaning behind the images because they do not want to beyond it. Individuals are limiting their individuality by becoming like every other person. The parody of this picture shows that people want to feel connected with others but in the process they surround their identity with fences. If people act a certain way to fit in, would they lose their identity?
Individuals pretending to be someone completely different are swimming in sea far away from ethical decisions. Throughout Nelson’s passage she implies how individuals are aware of their actions but they prefer to be a part of a group. This is shown with not only the alteration of iPod to iRaq but with “The Running Man. ” The cruelty is shown in how “the network engages the populace by paying civilians for confirmed sightings of the runner, which it then passes along to the Hunters” (Nelson 301). People are aware of their actions but they want to be a part of something bigger.
In this sense individuals fence their own individuality and emotion to fit in. This is also shown in Nafisi where individuals literally and figuratively cover themselves to fit in. As stated in the text “I could not get over the shock of seeing them shed their mandatory veils and robes and burst in color” (Nafisi 281). The word mandatory implies that individuals had to cover their individuality and imagination. Their individuality disappears because they have no sense of expression. Since they lose their sense of expression, individuals also lose their imagination.
They are mandated to wear a veil, which limits their freedom. As they took their veils off “each one gained an outline and a shape, becoming her own inimitable self” (Nafisi 281). Women are assimilating to the standards of Iran and are fenced up. When Nafisi’s students walk through the door they not only reveal their bodies but they also open their minds to different ideas. Their limitations are shown in the how “female students were being penalized for running up the stairs when they were late for classes, for laughing in the hallways, for talking to members of the opposite sex” (Nafisi 283).
Their freedom is taken away from them because of their need to fit in due to the expectations of society. The word penalized shows that individuals are restricted from having any rights and using their imagination. In addition, Davidson shows that individuals try to fit in and limit their individuality. Davidson states how “our national educational policy depends on standardized tests” is the reason why individuals have a limited sense of knowledge (Davidson 59). The key word is depends because it shows how important tests are to limiting the thought process.
Their freedom of learning is limited due to the fact that individuals are only learning material for standardized tests. Standardized tests limit individuals individuality because people are only seen as a score. Their score determines their intelligence without considering different aspects of life. This is shown in college applications where individuals are criticized by their SAT scores. Their freedom is limited because they do not have the ability to show their individuality and their ideas. Davidson implies that individuals have to assimilate to a certain way to access different types of information.
Individuals are trying to fit in so that they can be a part of the intelligent group. The mind limits our freedom by blocking our individuality so that we can fit in. Instead of being unique and true to themselves, individuals are limited by societal and personal expectations. In this sense, individuals are pressured into fencing their imagination and their individuality to become like everyone else. Individuals are losing track of their freedom because their mind is telling them to act a certain way. This interferes with their emotions because individuals do not know who they should be.
The “vast sea of multiplicity” creates a world where they are lost and cannot find where they belong. Instead individuals are distracted by the popularity of certain events that leads them to forget that they should not act in a cold manner. The impact of the mind can disrupt the lives of many by causing them to feel hidden away from knowledge and emotion. Not only do individuals want the sense of fitting in but the government and companies are controlling the minds of individuals so that they can promote a specific thing to them.