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Bergers Three Methods of Escaping the Tyranny of Society

  • Date Submitted: 07/30/2013 02:42 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 51.3 
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This chapter escapes the prison walls a bit with the introduction of methods of gaining freedom and an evaluation of freedom from society.   Defining freedom and just dealing with the concept of it is difficult for humans.     However; in the attempt to define freedom we gain some hope that we can escape the tyranny of society.   According to Berger, there are three major ways in which to do so.

Transformation is one of the three ways of escaping from the tyranny of society. He suggests, “Social situations can be transformed or at least sabotaged by a refusal to accept their previous definitions” (130). In   Refusing to accept the pre formed conception of society we can sabotage and eventually even metamorphose societal situations.   When people act in ways that are not expected others can find themselves unable to cope.   This is called a “ploy and is a precise technique of redefining the situation contrary to general expectations” (131).   One must generally come to adjust to the internal controls and then refuse the external societal controls in order to implement an attempt at transformation.

Detachment is the second method of fleeing from the oppression of society.   Berger states. “It is possible, though frequently at considerable psychological cost, to build for oneself a castle of the mind in which the day-to-day expectations of society can be almost completely ignored” (132).   This is when one begins to shape his own society more and more with less and less influence from his previous society.   Although, some of the previous society will remain, he continues to move away from this.   If others join him then he has created a counter society.   This will lessen the anxiety of going against the grain of society.   I find this interesting. It makes me wonder if we can secretly live within our own detached world cognitively why we navigate our society roles in line with what is expected.

This leads me to the third way Berger proposes we can seek freedom from...


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