So, when I wrote the blog on Darkon I thought that, at some point, I would get a chance to tie up the seemingly disconnected loose ends in it, but, alas, the tsunami of work from school and jobs has pretty much buried me. So I thought that, while Davie Jones and I work on this hermeneutics paper, I would just post the questions about Darkon with which I am wrestling, and maybe that would assuage away the irritation anyone feels because I can’t complete anything (Josh) – and maybe it will even spark some discussion. Here you go:
1. We all agree that many of our social structures we participate in, and roles that we play every day are somewhat artificial, compared to other structures and roles that seem to be more tightly tied to what we naturally are. For example, the structure of a family unit at least seems to be a necessary and natural thing for us, while the structure of a university, or a job is less natural. For roles, we would probably agree that the role of father, mother, friend, or hunter would be pretty natural to humanity, while the role of, say, Starbucks Barista or lawyer or most-popular-person-in-school is pretty accidental. It seems to me that we can understand what the inhabitants of Darkon are doing in terms of roles and structures (a structure probably being an orderly system of roles aimed at a common end), and we can understand our lives in the same way. So, what is it that divorces the roles and structures of Darkon from reality, qualitatively or quantatatively, in ways that ours aren’t?
2. Some obvious answers to 1 would be that, in darkon, there are elves and warlocks, and elves and warlocks don’t actually exist. So the question here is, what makes the role of Starbucks Barista or Cheerleader “more real” than the roles of elf and warlock?
3. If a structure is an orderly system of roles working toward a common end, does the end have to be fairly concrete (such as feeding a family, or providing shelter) or could it be more abstract (say, meeting a person’s need to feel significant) and still be legitimate?
4. If such personal, abstract ends aren’t legitimate, how do we respond to people who play common, everyday social roles for the puropse of meeting such an end?
5. Legitimate or illegitimate, what is our standard for what roles and structures are worthy of our investment?