Saturday, August 08, 2009

Remediation and Eccentricity

I think these two words are antonyms. They are two opposing concepts, and yet seldom thought of as such.

The word 'remediation' comes from the old Greek word medos which means 'counsel' or 'best path'; it later came to mean, via Latin medialis, 'to make right again' or 'to make better' or 'to return to the normal path'.

However, the word 'eccentricity' comes from the Greek for 'out of the centre' or 'uncentredness'. It is a tendency to not be in the medium or the median, but to be 'far out'. To be eccentric means to depart from the norm, to be abnormal.

The interesting thing is that normal people are neither remediable nor eccentric. If they are normal, they need not be remediated, and if they are normal, they are by definition not eccentric. But for some reason, we persist in remediating the normal, as if somehow everyone should be made better than before and thus create a new norm.

But that way lies madness. How much more supranormal can normal become? It's like watching those horrendous specimens of human form, the bodybuilders and weightlifters. This is pushing the envelope of functionality; creating muscles for the sake of it, and actually reducing one's human functional capacity. How... eccentric.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home