Radical media, politics and culture.

J. D. Suss, "Decolonizing History, Recolonizing the Academy"

J.D. Suss writes:

"Decolonizing History, Recolonizing the Academy"
J. D. Suss

Some Questions

If, as I maintain, we in the West truly lust after the very things that oppress us, then should we be surprised by how absurd life has become? Who are the "we" doing the "lusting"? One might say that the "we" are all human beings who live under the spell of the post-modern Western paradigm of mental/rational consciousness, plus all others in the world who – while they may not live in a post-modern industrialized nation – are prone to "westerning" (viz., those aspiring, would be, "occidentalizing," clone-puppies).1 Our “lust” involves, well, wanting to have just about anything and everything within (and even beyond) our grasp, in a legally sanctioned, "disembodied" scientismic culture-run-amok – one in which citizens have become target markets that the media helps turn into demanding consumeroids. Still, we welcome our materialist hell as our heaven, or at least as our safe haven, in a world that largely goes without.

Certainly we can be born into privilege. We can also gain privilege by working at it, and for very cogent reasons, I'm sure. But at what cost? And who pays? Are citizens who resent the conduct of an elected or appointed official only envious, lusting for the same power that (paradoxically) oppresses them? Is it not the case that we very often are only projecting our own covert desires for power, prestige, and privilege upon those who have it when we express our distaste or outrage at them, and thereby justify, by some weird calculus, our own self-loathing via this lusting-in-disguise? Do we always demean that which we dislike about ourselves by criticizing it in others?Is it not absurd that we self-flagellate ourselves over the West's historical period of colonization that officially came to a close earlier in the last century, yet we cling to an ethnocentric colonizer's mentality when using Western science and technology as a yardstick to judge other nations’ “ways of development”? – or clamor loudly if someone holding a heretical opinion strides boldly through the doors of the academy and tries to make himself comfortable there?2 If we accept the notion of "reverse discrimination, " should we not also accept the notion of "reverse oppression" and apply it as the basis for understanding our apparent insatiable lusting after that which oppresses us? Does such a thing (reverse oppression) exist? – or are oppression and discrimination the reverse sides of the same coin? Do we, after suffering oppression, long to be oppressors? To reverse roles? Is it possible that our comforts are oppressing us too? – our money, investments, wonderfully furnished homes or apartments, our cars, our various luxuries of techno-wizardry and distraction – how about our educations? our values, assumptions and beliefs? Do all of these oppress us with their "utter comfort"? If so, maybe we ought to be wary about having too much comfort – is it not oppressive, in a zen-like way, this desire-laden oppression?

Throughout what follows, be cognizant of this lusting after the very things that oppress, oh reader! In many respects it seems counter-intuitive. And yet, could this alleged phenomenon be endemic of contemporary consciousness?

General DisOrientation

In this article I will touch upon various texts. One is Chapter One of Claude Alvares' Decolonizing History: Technology and Culture in India, China and the West, 1492 to the Present Day (Apex Press: NY, 1991). Another is the Introduction by Jacques Berlinerblau in his Heresy in The University: The Black Athena Controversy and the Responsibilities of American Intellectuals (Rutgers University Press: New Jersey, 1999). The latter piece is a reaction to Martin Bernal’s thesis that Greek classical culture – and thus Western civilization – was more heavily influenced by Afro-Asiatic cultures than is typically acknowledged by conventional scholarship. I weave these texts into a narrative on law and consciousness. In fact, it is almost impossible to talk of law without considering consciousness, as law was a response to mental consciousness from its inception, as well as a catalyst for the evolution of consciousness into its deficient form – mental/rational consciousness (Gebser, 1985). Interestingly, the Black Athena controversy refers us back at least 3,000 years, i.e., to the first stirrings of mental consciousness; and the Decolonizing History piece refers us back to the 15th Century, wherein the very beginnings of our mental/rational consciousness can be traced.

Mental/rational consciousness can be described as follows:

a perspectival (eye/brain) outer-relating to space, characterized by a directed, dual oppositionality in cerebral functions of reflection, abstraction, will and volition, emphasizing a causal and directed rationality that conceptualizes and reflects, sees and measures using thought and ideation to perceive a materialistic reality from an egocentric representation-conception of the world, through projective speculation toward a predominately future orientation to time (in purpose and goal) and within a patriarchal social system that is generally bonded through religion [or a secular-scientific faith], characterized by believing-knowing-deducing.

I am presenting the above paraphrase of Jean Gebser's mental/rational consciousness (from the table appended to the back of his The Ever-Present Origin (1985)) as being identified most closely with populations in post-modern Western industrialized nations. It is my own contention that mental/rational consciousness, while universally "available" to populations and cultures of all nations, is adopted and "retrofitted" in part or in whole, according to the prevailing lifestyle and cultural norms, values, assumptions and beliefs in “non-Western-ized” areas – or rejected altogether in pockets of relative changelessness, i.e., in populations wherein mental/rational consciousness barely comports with traditional ways of being and knowing, such as with various indigenous peoples worldwide. It might also be argued that certain populations are selectively accepting the mental, while rejecting rational (referred to by Gebser as “deficient mental”) consciousness.

In Deep: The Invisible Hand of Law & Consciousness

The awakening of Western legal thought can be traced to ancient Greece, among whose inhabitants one commentator says that for the first time...reflective thought and argument became a habit of educated men..."10 wherein "...objective discussion of man's relation to law and justice became an activity of the educated mind and was recorded in a literature"11...

This short account, while nicely rendered in fine scholarly style, may at the same time be suspect because, one must ask – what does he mean by "educated men" and the "educated mind"? Does he mean "educated" in only a Western sense of being educated? What does the author mean by "objective discussion"? Does he mean separated from context, the body – categorically "otherizing"? And why is being "recorded in literature" so important? (not to mention the use of only "men," the old male bias).

These are inherent, culture-specific mental/rational biases, are they not? – biases that favor a Western notion of education, which in turn favors "objectivity," “thought," and "the written word," and which in turn is embedded in a "patri-centered" consciousness.

But maybe we're being too picayune. After all, (and as the Western oppressors do in the Alvarez text) discernments must be made between what makes a foreign cretin a cretin, and what makes a civilized person civilized, right? – how about education of any kind? and a body of literature that is handed down by oral tradition (associated with a "speaking mouth," the organ of emphasis in Gebser’s mythical structure of consciousness) instead of by written tradition (associated with a "seeing eye," Gebser’s organ of emphasis in a mental consciousness)? Is finding the beginning of law in ancient Greece so wrong-headed? If so, should I be self-flagellating (or at least questioning) my Western self? Or am I subtly self-congratulating my Western self by accepting Greece as the birthplace of Western law? Let us bracket these cultural/personal identity issues for now.

"Recolonizing the Academy" (referring to the Berlinerblau text – a critique of the Black Athena controversy) means to reclaim it from old paradigm (read "ethno-cognicentric, mental/rational") thinking and infuse it with new voices and new, more cross-disciplinary thinking – from non-mainstream (usually meaning "non-white, non-male"), marginalized cultural abnormatives (meant affectionately). The worry for me, as ever, is whether by recolonizing in this way such “neo-colonials” are really just lusting after the very things that have been oppressing them, i.e., access to academic jobs, publishing opportunities (from whence their oppression had formerly emanated) and the chance to simply recreate, in effect, a new status quo. Perhaps this is all that is ever accomplished as the old gatekeepers die off and the avant garde rolls in. If so...we may not be witnessing a genuine revolution (are we ever?) as much as a mere changing of the guard. (E.g, will the new Democratically-controlled Congress really make a difference?)

Of course Martin Bernal, author of Black Athena: The Afroasiatic Roots of Classical Civilization (1991) is a heretic, but a heretic from within the Ivy League establishment – albeit a professor from the "radical tier" who has changed his specialty in mid-career: from Sinologist to becoming (comparatively speaking) a dilettante doing cross-disciplinary big-picturism. It is as much the professor, Martin Bernal, as it is his neocolonial heresies that threaten the conventional academic thinking in the virtual land of scholarship. Still, it seems inevitable that there just may result a confusion in identifying oppressor from oppressed – if we locate the field of the academy not just in the dusty books inside ivy-covered halls but extend it to where it obviously must exist – in the imaginal dimension of ideas – we find the initial battleground here, where oppressed and oppressor battle each other. But which is which? It seems obvious that Bernal is the oppressed scholar whose off-beat notions of the origins of Western civilization are being hacked-to-death by entrenched scholarly establishment oppressors. And this certainly is the case.

Something else is happening too – "Bernal participates in what Charles Taylor (who is not a radical) has called 'the politics of recognition.’ That educators consistently withhold recognition of Egyptian influence on Greece is construed as a ‘form of oppression’."13 Hence, Gandhi, for one, might have said that what Bernal is doing is trying to liberate these educators from their own oppression.

From "fortified" university turf they defend the purity of their epistemological beliefs about cultural identity, drawn from their own ontological interpretations – all of which is rooted deeply in a mental/rational consciousness – Gebser’s egocentric, dual "us/them” oppositionality of believing-knowing-deducing. But I maintain that this is a battle of self-against-self, or as the political lines become clearer in publication after publication, the more monolithic dominant cultural self against a collectivity of sub-cultural selves – the prize: the academy, including the envied primacy of stewarding its hallowed noospheric domain. The Berlinerblau text, however, makes clear that "... today' s university is a locus of theoretical and methodological dissensus.”11 What Bernal has done is that he "...has trespassed upon the increasingly constricted ground of an aging and evaporating academic orthodoxy..."12 and "...if he is right then most of what everyone else believes is wrong.”13 No wonder the great outcry against his attempted subversion. Yet the interesting point to note is "that underneath the controversy surrounding Black Athena, and underneath the culture wars in general, there lies a conflict about the very definition of what scholarship is and about the moral responsibility of the scholar."14 And so, although the noospheric domain of the academy is already split asunder with dissensus, there remains an orthopraxy of "historical and epistemological beliefs which have assumed the status of givens.” This is the object of Bernal's scorn.

And the noosphere is the dwelling place of contemporary Western ethno-centric thinking. From here, the neo-con colonial mind forms schemes – not to so much to send out armies and colonists anymore – but to epistemologically and economically colonize the world through financial institutions and their minions, which are indoctrinated in their art at universities and colleges almost exclusively in America and Europe. It's a kind of psy-ops ("military psychological-operations") that is so well blended into the fabric of our intellectual and social landscape that we do not see it anymore. Yet we know that the majority of the heavy-hitters in financial institutions and government agencies are molded in and then drawn from leading universities, i.e., the academy. On a global canvass, Western scholars provide the background relief against which technocrats slap-on the engines of sciento-financial dualist-materialist efficiency for spreading a seductive model of ethno-centrism – and this creation is, in turn, entirely supported by Western law and Western-produced treaties such as N.A.F.T.A. and G.A.T.T. – and interpreted to John and Jane Q. Public not just by “the courts” but by similarly situated scholars who staff those seemingly neutral, but woefully biased, foundations, institutes, and think-tanks. Anyone who watches TV has seen these “experts.” They are often trotted out on the News Hour with Jim Lehrer and on other prime time venues. Well-trained farm animules indeed!

It is curious to note that the survey in Decolonizing History begins in 1492, at the eve of the Renaissance and the age of discovery. Again, this period coincides almost perfectly with the early stirrings, historically, of the rational aspect of mental/rational consciousness. As every American school boy and girl knows, in 1492 Columbus discovered America. What Columbus really "discovered" was "an object," the American land mass, representing seemingly unlimited resources to feed the devouring God of the deficient mental. And Western law, at this time bound up with the Catholic Church, was expressing the fury of that mental/rational consciousness. For example,

[t]he Spanish jurist theologian Domenico de Soto (1494–1560) spoke of law's coercive' force (vis coerciva); his compatriot the Jesuit Juan Mariana (1536-1624) built a formula...: 'For law is reason, free from all passion (omni perturbatione vacua), deriving from the mind of God (a mente divina hausta), laying down those things that are upright and salutary, and forbidding their opposite (honesta et salutaria prescribens, prohibensque contraria)'.15

Western law on the cusp of the Renaissance was a law steeped in the medieval doctrine of moral criteria for the validity of laws. It was an imperative law in terms of command and prohibition, which must conform to God's law and be for the common good. But whose "God" and whose "common good"? – to which one might respond "the doctrinal totalitarianism of the Christian God and a parochial, xenophobic common European good, of course." So as Europeans set sail for the New World, they brought such notions as a part of their overall bundle of cultural conditioning (According to Gebser, "morality is always a conscious [i.e., mental] idea"; and "[o]nly a mental world requires laws; the mythical world, secure in the polarity, neither knows nor needs them."16 ) And when European colonists met the Native Americans it was a clash of structures of consciousness (mental vs. mythic), or perhaps better stated – a clash in structures of mind (Western mental-devolving vs. indigenous mental-holistic) that has likely underscored every other disjunction between them (and their descendants) since.

The succeeding centuries – on through the Enlightenment and up until today – have simply been the temporal setting for variations on a theme of expanding spatial domination ("space," the playground-to-exploit of the mental/rational) supported by an intensifying legal rationalization for the land grab. Eventually, law would value labor rights (of the overlord corporations, of course) over property rights (private property none-the-less remaining at least as the mythic foundation for capitalism). Citizen-consumeroids would be further deconstructed into wage-slave serfs who must obey their corporate masters; the dummy-government, having ceded a large share of its sovereign power to boards of directors of multi-national corporations, would devolve into an overly-bureaucratized national security state providing mostly the military muscle and policing function for a continued noospheric hegemony of the Western way.

Alvarez chronicles the Western epistemological narcissism that today expresses its ethnocentric techno-industrial bias in his Decolonizing History. “…[I]n the back of most learned men's minds" [viz., the academy and Western elites generally] the "...underprivileged part of the world [my emphasis: note the subtle mind-control of the languaging: a huge deductive assumption is imputed to Western thought here, re., that the Western world, unlike those who don't subscribe to the Western paradigm, is one of "privilege"] cannot hope to save itself except through the replication and extension of the Western paradigm of cultural and technological development.”17 A reflection on the law of the Enlightenment period is illuminating. No longer as steeped in the morality of its medieval Church underpinnings, the law in the late eighteenth century was moving toward the moorings of autonomous reason (read "ever-rational-izing").18 Consider the following passage from Jeremy Bentham (1748–1832) whose name is associated with "utilitarianism" and "all kinds of rational and beneficial law reforms." Bentham defines a law as

an assemblage of signs declarative of a volition conceived or adopted by the sovereign in the state, concerning the conduct to be observed in a certain case by a certain person or class of persons, who in the case in question are or are supposed to be subject to his power: such volition trusting for its accomplishment to the expectation of certain events which it is intended such declaration should upon occasion be a means of bringing to pass, and the prospect of which it is intended should act as a motive upon those whose conduct is in question.19

While retaining its commanding and coercive nature, the locus of the law's origin had moved from "the mind of God" to "the mind of man." That mind had many, if not all, of the characteristics of Gebser’s (1985) mental/rational consciousness: "an assemblage of signs" (representation-conception), "expectations" (a projected speculation toward a predominantly future orientation to time), a "sovereign in the state" vs. "a certain person or class of persons" (a directed dual oppositionality); and law as a "declaration" and hence a “motive” to obey (cerebral functions of reflection, abstraction, will and volition, emphasizing a causal and directed rationality).

In critiquing Western industrial man ("homo faber") Alvarez notes, "man no longer lives in a physical universe: he inhabits instead a symbolic world...[a]ll progress in human thought and belief refines and reinforces this web.”20 In other words, thought has been given prominence as the mediating filter-factor between humanity and its physical world, widening the rift in an ever-more-dominizing mental/rational noosphere that interjects itself between subject/object, self/other. Alvarez quotes anthropologist Clifford Geertz, who rightly describes this rift in terms of "culture” – and not just in terms of man-the-toolmaker: “…increasing reliance upon systems of significant symbols (language, art, myth, ritual) for orientation, communication, and self-control" also drove "...the advance in social organization...and moral regulation…”21 Alvarez concludes that the evolution of the mind was driven by these factors [e.g., moral regulation as representing the rise of a nascent law-making], laying to rest the restrictive theory of tool-making [technology] as the over-riding engine of that evolution. A "...symbolic net is woven and...sits like a complex web on human experience"22 so that “…man cannot know or encounter anything except through the medium of this pervasive edifice."23

Thus, the thesis is supported: that the Western paradigm of the mental/rational has succeeded in dominating and suppressing, through language and other symbols, our own magic/mythic consciousness structures (associated more with emotions, feelings, nature, imagination, a sense of unity and cosmic wonder); we are prevented from integration, we "suffer our brains" which are, in effect, disconnected from our bodies and the bio-physio-sphere by a pathological, dissociative (un)reality. Moreover, our notion of owning the only techno-industrial game in town, and denying that it could arise in any but our own paradigm, the West denies that those peoples, cultures, tribes, nations outside its influence can have developed their own domestic technology and industry.

In fact, according to the sources Alvarez cites, this has indeed been the case. For example, he cites authority for stating that the Chinese invented printing, gunpowder, and the magnet, while Western scholars continue to avoid acknowledging this with a typical techno-elitism that is traced back as far as Francis Bacon. (Bernal the Sinologist would very likely agree.)

It is perhaps inconceivable to the Western mind that a mental consciousness of an altogether different character – one in which the magic/mythic structures are more associated, or one that has rejected the rational accretion – can and does exist. And to prove the point, according to Alvarez, in those areas occupied during the colonial period, Western nations destroyed the indigenous industry it found, as it demolished the confidence those people had in their own technological abilities (which were drawn from their own, non-Western mental frames of reference). Further, the indigenous peoples are brainwashed into believing that the Western sciento-techno-industrial-political model is the only one possible. (Similar to what is going on in Iraq today?)

One is reminded of the Occidental chauvinism, racism and anti-Semitism spoken of in the Black Athena reading. Bernal is a radical "steeped in the canonical, theoretical, and methodological traditions" that define the modern scholar (making him all the more threatening to traditional academics). Simply stated, he puts forth the idea that Greece was a kind of mulatto culture that had been created from a hybridization of black African Egypt and the Semitic Phoenicians. "[R]ankled by the ideological torque of [Bernal's] provocative theories" an avalanche of harsh criticism was unleashed. One critic called Black Athena a massive, fundamentally misguided projection upon the second millennium B.C.E.," speculating that Bernal was projecting his own "personal struggle to establish an identity during the later twentieth century" (referring to Bernal’s supposed mid-life crisis in 1975, around which time he began researching the Sephardic Jewish roots of his family, which had transplanted itself to Ireland in the Seventeenth Century.) This, and comments like them, (perhaps not fully unwarranted) finally amounted to an "erasure of the adversary [which] did much to convince credulous journalists and scholars that a definitive academic consensus had been reached." Thus, in addition to the military-industrial complex, we can postulate a "media-academia complex" – one that can set its sights on either domestic or global issues of power.

On the law front, what immediately comes to mind as being analogous to Bernal's new theories, are the plain fact that Babylonia's laws of Eshunna and Hammurabi's Code (c. 1800 BCE and 1750 BCE respectively), preceded the early formative period of law in ancient Greece by perhaps a millennium. In this age of an emerging consciousness in the mythic mind, law as apprehended by the earlier Greeks was described as "coming from the gods.” According to Homer (who memorialized events from an oral tradition that came down from 1300–1100 BCE) the earliest Greek notion of law was referred to as themis, understood as meaning “god-inspired" or "law of the heavens.” And yet, the written laws of men were already in existence in Mesopotamia when the Greeks were still fidgeting around with their themis. Moreover, if we only stop to consider what the Odyssey and Illiad are about, we might note the formative role of foreign influences therein – the Illiad is all about military conquest, always a "forcing together of the cultures of conqueror and conquered; and the Odyssey is all about Odysseus, doomed to wander for years in foreign lands where exotic cultural influences await. Such speculation is perhaps "Bernalian" in that, by asserting it, one trespasses on the specializations of the jurist, classicist, or anthropologist without having the qualification of any such specialist, despite it perhaps being "a rather impressive synthesis and renovation of existing scholarship." Breakthroughs often come from "unbrainwashed" neophytes. The notions of personal identity (what the traditional academics believe and teach) and cultural identity (the consensual bases of those beliefs and teachings) have never been closer. Here we can imagine Kant: we are what we think or believe ourselves to be, and this is what creates the world around us, a world that we are deluded into perceiving "objectively."

Berlinerblau's most interesting observation is what he calls Bernal's “attack on the academy,"30 or as he says more colorfully – "Martin Bernal's systematic effort to deforest the verdant ideology of the modern research university.”31 Ignored – as a way of violence and oppression toward Bernal their detractor – Bernal none-the-less makes his point, according to Berlinerblau, who says that "every morpheme of Bernal's text screams...[that] the very structure of the university...militates against an impartial inquiry, the judicious assessment of heterodox claims, and intellectual innovation.”32 (Or, put a little differently by a contemporary, ontological anarchist thinker, “the concept of an independent scholar in America is a null set.”33) Toward the end, Berlinerblau makes the following observation:

The indictment of the university extends to the norms of scholarly behavior as well. The most radical aspect of Bernal's work consists of the manner in which he challenges – by personal example – the contemporary understanding of what constitutes scholarship. It is this component of Black Athena – remarked upon by few, vicariously experienced by many – which will rank it as one of the most subversive academic works of the late twentieth century.34
Concluding Remarks

Throughout this article I have been looking through the lens of Jean Gebser's structures of consciousness model. I have limited Gebser's mental/rational to Western post-modern industrial societies and those who aspire toward this particular paradigm. We determine whatever we wish to do with both models and methodologies, in how we make use of them – the academy has its own, as do authors of texts, and clearly, the Western legal tradition also has its own models and methodologies. I maintain that, as human systems – of law and jurisprudence, history, and academia (mainstream and non-mainstream) – all systems interact, all are interdependent. But what of it, if most models and methodologies that go into the making of these human systems are now overly nested, to one degree or another, in the mental/rational consciousness of our present era? Yes, it’s enough to make you stop chasing your own tail, raise up your head, and just let out a good howl!

Western jurisprudence, within which remain elements of theology, morality and philosophy, engenders an ideal of a humanism fostered by academia and a style of democracy that bears the impress of our history. Whether that history began in Mesopotamia or Greece matters little in the final analysis; but if both the academy and history have derailed humanity's sense of justice, how and why it has done so are very pressing concerns. Berlinerblau summed up nicely the absurdity of our paradoxical human condition. At the end of his Introduction he writes: "The eradication of one's biases...is an impossible task. Yet it is the belief that this can be done which stands as both the heroism and the pathos of the scholar."35

Confronting one’s deeply ingrained biases is as much the work of jurists, historians and academics as it is for John and Jane Q. Public. We all must forever struggle, it seems, to go beyond the consciousness of the age, while being ever-mindful to integrate the best from within all of the structures of consciousness that are also already deeply a part of us. And discerning those who have truly succeeded, we may discover the best models of all are those who DO NOT lust after the very things that oppress themselves – or us.


1. By "post modern Western paradigm" I am referring to a particular (albeit cross-cultural) ethno-cognicentric mental/rational consciousness that has so intensified as to dominate, suppress and marginalize more embodied magic (unity) and mythic (polar complementarity) structures of consciousness, which can be identified more with emotions, feelings, nature, imagination, the feminine, a sense of unity and cosmic wonder.

2. Among the influential technical innovations of the time: the first use of gunpowder in canon appears in the fourteenth century, increasing the military power of the state to monopolize violence; the mechanical clock begins to come into common use at about this same time, colonizing the qualitative, natural, seasonal rhythm of time by means of a new quantitative, work-a-day, rational clock-time; the manufacture and distribution of mirrors increases exponentially at the beginning of the fifteenth century, higher demand arguably signifying a psychological intensification of mental consciousness and contributing to a deepening rift between self and other; in the mid-fifteenth century the invention of the movable-type printing press enables many more people to possess books and gain access more quickly to new ideas, thus helping the Reformation to succeed and playing a critical role in the diffusion of literature and science; in the latter fifteenth century, advances in the art of maritime navigation lead to the discovery of the New World of the Americas, and the exploration of other continents, from which were extracted riches that increase the wealth and power of both Spain and Portugal and other sea-faring nations capable of colonial exploitation; the technique of perspective in art (the illusion of depth on a flat surface) is discovered during the Renaissance – “the visual equivalent of left-brained, dualistic thinking,” according to one contemporary modern commentator (Shlain, 1998, p. 313).

3. Kelly, 1992: 1

4. Berlinerblau, 1999:10

5. Ibid. 6 ("In this manner the divisions which have emerged in the Black Athena Controversy replicate a larger realignment within American intellectual culture. ")

6. Ibid. 16

7. Ibid. 17

8. Ibid. 17

9. Ibid. 17

10. Kelly, 1992: 183

11.Ibid. 184

12. Ibid. 183–184

13. Gebser, 1985: 419 (quoting Peter Bramm, Feuilletons (Stuttgart: Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 141 (1949))

14. Ibid. 76

15. "Mythic" being the predominating structure. Yet Native American tribes had their own type of law, indicating (at least according to Gebser) the pre-existence of a mental consciousness structure. See generally, Hoebel, 1968)

16. Gebser, 1985: 420-421

17. Alvarez, 1991:18

18. Kelly. 1992:287

19. Ibid. 290 (quoting from Fragment On Government, Sec. 10 (1776). The format of the proposition obviously owes something to Hobbes [author's comment].

20. Alvarez, 1991:23 (citing Cassirer, 1965).

21. Ibid. 21

22. Ibid. 23 (citing Cassirer)

23. Ibid. 35 (quoting Bacon)

24. Berlinerblau, 1999:4

25. Ibid. 8

26. Ibid. 5

27. Ibid. 14

28. Ibid. 9

29. Kelly, 1992:7

30. Berlinerblau, 1999: 19

31. Ibid. 12

32. Ibid. 12

33. Peter Lamborn Wilson (excerpted from an unpublished private correspondence)

34. Berlinerblau, 1999:12–13 (Putting Bernal in such a light recalls to mind how the transpersonal community has pigeon-holed Ken Wilber, i.e., comparatively speaking, a dilettante doing cross-disciplinary big-picturism. And one of the criticisms leveled at Wilber from the academy is his failure to engage by using a more dialogical approach, and similar criticisms leveled against him, for example by Jorge Ferrer (See, Mark Edwards, What Ken Wilber has brought together let no postmodernist bring asunder, http://www.integralworld.net/index.html?edwards3.h tml. (2000))

35. Ibid. 20


Claude Alvares, Decolonizing History: Technology and Culture in India, China and the West, 1492 to the Present Day (Apex Press: NY, 1991)

Jacques Berlinerblau, Heresy in The University: The Black Athena Controversy and the Responsibilities of American Intellectuals (Rutgers University Press: New Jersey, 1999)

Martin Bernal, Black Athena: The Afroasiatic Roots of Classical Civilization (Rutgers University Press, 1987)

Ernst Cassirer, The Philosophy of Symbolic Forms (Yale University Press, 1965)

Jean Gebser, The Ever-Present Origin (Ohio University Press: Athens, Ohio, Eng. trans. 1985 (orig. pub. 1949 and 1953))

E. Adamson Hoebel, The Law of Primitive Man: A Study in Comparative Legal Dynamics (Atheneum: NY, 1968)

J.M. Kelly, A Short History of Western Legal Theory (Clarendon Press: Oxford, England, 1992)

Leonard Shlain, The Alphabet and the Goddess: The Conflict Between Word and Image (New York: Viking, 1998).

Additional Note

Also see,

Thomas D. Barton, "Troublesome Connections: The Law and Post-Enlightenment Culture" (Emory Law Journal, 47: 163, 1998)

Peter Gabel, "The Phenomenology of Rights-Consciousness and the Pact of the Withdrawn Selves" (Texas Law Review, 62: 1563–1599, 1984)

P. G. Monateri, "Black Gaius: A Quest for the Multicultural Origins of the 'Western Legal Tradition' ” (Hastings Law Journal, Vol. 50, pp.1–72, April, 1999)

[© 2007 by Jonathan D. Suss. The author is an American metapolitical citizen, Maryland lawyer, and a recent Ph.D. in Humanities, whose doctoral dissertation is entitled, "The Odyssey of the Western Legal Tradition: Integral Jurisprudence – Toward the Self-Transcendence of Deficient-Mental Legal Culture." Visit his blogs here and here.]