BaumannGrammars - Chapter 08 | eBooks | Non-Fiction

BaumannGrammars - Chapter 08

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If you ladies leave my island, if you survive recruit training, you will be a weapon, you will be a minister of death, praying for war. And proud. Until that day you are pukes, you are scumbags, you are the lowest term of life on earth. You are not even human. You people are nothing but a lot of little pieces of amphibian shit. (Senior Drill Instructor Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in Full Metal Jacket)
In introducing the grammars of identity/alterity based on orientalization, segmentation and encompassment, Baumann has raised the question of which circumstances would have to arise for the three grammars to cease to work. He proposed this would happen if they were made to 'implode' by 'a corruption of language' which would 'reduce the complexity of each grammar to the blatancy of an unmitigated binarism: "us good, they bad"'. 'It is when language makes the grammars implode,' so he argues, 'that unmitigated binarism helps violence explode'. I want to expand on this argument by showing that such an implosion might be accompanied at the same time by at least a temporary humiliation and dehumanization — for instance, through the use of a similar kind of invective language — of exactly those men or women who are to fight or destroy the others represented as 'bad', 'disgusting' and therefore 'destroyable'. In other words, I want to make clear that negative ways of classifying and labeling people may not only lead to radical exclusion, elimination or extermination, but may also lead to radical inclusion in particular social groups. Invective and dehumanizing language seems to be a double- edged sword. Dehumanization not only leads to the most violent exclusion of the other, but it is also a means toward the most violent inclusion of selves into an overpowering 'us'. If you ladies leave my island, if you survive recruit training, you will be a weapon, you will be a minister of death, praying for war. And proud. Until that day you are pukes, you are scumbags, you are the lowest term of life on earth. You are
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