Monday, March 2, 2009

Oh, Blumer...

It is not a an academic overview on the theories of crowd and public. It is just a note from a communication student trying to understand about the characters of the crowd and compare the thoughts and styles of the theorists. So first of all, I would like to provide a disclaimer, that this note came from my immediate random thoughts.

Yesterday I had a hard time approving Gustav LeBon's theories of crowd. Just reading some very first pages of "La Psychologie des Foules", his famous said-to-be classic works, I got severe skepticism attack as I sensed how he under estimated human's self-authority. I am really not in favor or his argument, especially the one stating that "..sentiments and ideas go to the same direction, conscious personality VANISHES..." when people are drawn into the crowd...

It was a bad weekend night, really. I felt uneasy that such opinion could be widely accepted, and became so popular. After pondering too much on his point of views, thankfully today I start reading to Helbert Blumer's theory of crowd.

I think I fall in love with Blumer's theories for two reasons. First, to me, Blumer offers more reasonable sense in reasoning of crowds. That reason is for sure acceptable to discuss in my Public Opinion class... but I have another thoughts which I do not think would be quite appropriate to share in my class:

I love Blumer because of his explanations, that are composed like this:
".. the organic satisfaction unquestionably yields a pleasure and exhilaration that makes the experience momentous..."

or this:
"...when the expressive crowd reaches the height of such collective ectasy, the tendency is for the feeling to be projected upon objects which are sensed as having some intimate connection with it."

His choices of expressions somehow make me feel like reading a Cosmopolitan's article that discusses 'the big O'. Pardon me for the naughty thoughts, but Blumer's way of explaining makes me sense the excitement of understanding the crowds... it feels intimate, pleasurable, it gives me a momentous ectasy. :)

1 comment:

  1. WHAHahahaa....Wong edan!

    Congratulation...You just had an intellectual orgasm! and it is hard to achieve hehehe

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