< yes, "swim down" as in "finding nemo" >
I have better things to do than be fascinated, and to talk at length, with and about the semiotics, and god forbid social relevance, of "Finding Nemo." Really. But then again, talking to me for far too long doesn't actually "enlighten" you: it drives you to a terminal state of Marocha-Madness. That is, either you don't understand me anymore, or you want to keep listening. It's a complex.
Anyway, I've watched "Finding Nemo" far too many times already that I'm liable to have fish tonight... which I'm not betting on. Living with a family of carnivores is a bit weird, considering that it is, after all, Lent. Being the only atheist in a family of believers (my older brother being agnostic and my younger sister being the churchy-churchy type) I scoff at the idea of dogma. This has nothing to do with "Finding Nemo," but as usual, I'm ranting and raving.
Perhaps the most poignant scene in "Finding Nemo," one where I'm particularly interested in as a sociological pornographer (yes, I have this perverted fascination with the social that it kind of borders on the obscene and obsessive), was where Marlon (Merlin, I don't really know) called on the tuna trapped in the fishing net to swim down. I suppose you already know about it...
Time to get fishy.
Awhile ago, in my Political Science 182 class (BTW: International Relations) a brief debate on revolution went on. My friend and class sparring partner, Abel, said that we should not discount on the possibility of the masses being able to lead any form of revolution. Had I thought of Nemo in that class, way before I was still a bit off with my chi in the absence of a Coke Light (you can't eat or drink in Room 302), I would have used the fishing net scene as a metaphor. But then again, if you're me you're better off shutting up, than have the whole class suddenly jolted into participation by your side comments and your metaphors... trust me.
Anyhow, if we take the fishing net scene as an example of revolution, we can construe the tuna to be the masses, and Marlon and Nemo to be the elite (whether the economic elite or the intelligentsia) to be the primary "instigators," if you will, of a revolution. The context is that the tuna, the masses in this case, are both oppressed and repressed by a dialectical contradiction. How the tuna got into the net in the first place is brought about by the dialectic in itself: freedom being the thesis, the means of production (the net) being the antithesis.
The fishing boat, in this case oppressive and repressive structures like capitalism, imperialism and feudalism (for you UP people: ang Tatlong Batayang Problema ng mala-kolonyal at mala-piyudal na lipunang Pilipino), exists to pull the tuna away from the realization of their species-being and alienate them, by packing them in oil and shipping them away to your local grocery store, in cans.
Unless Nemo and the tuna fish would want to spend their lives (if they at all live as inanimate, packaged objects) in a can, they would have to swim down. Nemo, being conscious of this oppressive and repressive reality, must take it upon himself to free the tuna out of the net. In order to do this he invokes resistance.
What else would Nemo and the tuna fish do but swim down? Sure, all the tuna want to be free so they go in separate courses, making it way easier for the fishing boat to take them out of the water. So Nemo, trapped in the net, calls on his dad, Marlon, to tell all the fish to swim down. As he does, the fish exert a concerted, coordinated effort to change their lot and be free. It took Nemo, a small clownfish, to alter their consciousness on their reality and that they must do something about it. In the process, however, Nemo is knocked out unconscious: nobody said radical change comes without a price.
So what does this all mean? Nemo's revolution in a fishing net is a pretty valid point in itself. First, Nemo, while not at all conscious of other realities outside the net he's trapped in, is conscious of the reality of the one trapping him. We, as a society, are trapped in all sorts of nets that sometimes we lose hope. In reality, the reason why our society is not experiencing any sort of real change is not because of a general feeling of hopelessness, but because we don't have directions for change. I'm stopping short of telling people what to do with their lives, whether they should follow the right or the left or the middle, if it does exist: that's not my business.
Society can't change on the individual level. Like the tuna fish in the fishing net, in order to change society we must have a concerted, coordinated effort to realize change. This is revolution in a nutshell.
On a side note, quite a few people are starting to rave about the "hilarity" of this blog, which I appreciate... but I don't really find anything hilarious about this. I like to think of myself as the guy-on-the-street fellow who happens to write stuff on anything he sees, so be warned: you might be the next fellow to read about yourself around here.
I was planning on changing this blog's title to "The Marocharim Experience," but it sounds too much like an N*Sync-Michael Jackson collaboration than a blog. Just experience the experiment.
Posted at Tuesday, February 22, 2005 by marocharim