Tuesday, May 28, 2019
When Irony Becomes Cynicism :: essays research papers
&9Understanding modern civilisation can be very difficult. There are so m any separate and variables that make up modern culture, and on top of that, these parts are always changing. In that sense, identifying and analyzing a specific trait in modern culture can be extremely challenging. Pinpointing a trait that is so frequently overused it is often taken for granted. Then being able to explain it so comfortably that people will be able to understand and see this trait as if they had never used, or been a part of it before. This is the case with an essay by Charles Gordon, When Irony Becomes Cynicism. Through his essay, one learns where badinages roots started to grow into todays monster that it is, and how irony is overused in television, radio and conversation. Gordon has honestly and frankly shown how irony is perceived and used in todays society. He fully shows that people use irony incorrectly, and it is to their disadvantage.&9Gordon has a particularly interdict view on how much irony is used today. The thesis in his essay is not clearly stated, but his implied argument is that the overuse of irony has make society cynical. This negative view comes across to the reader through sentences such as the following, after Gordon has explained the technical meaning of irony, "In todays context, irony is a sensibility that values cleverness and style above passion and commitment. It attacks bad taste by seeming to celebrate it. It mocks devotion to important causes by feigning devotion to trivial causes Which makes it sound pretty awful, and it can be." After the first few paragraphs in his essay, it becomes clear which side Gordon is on. However, he does show that he is not totally putting down irony, just the people using it incorrectly, " there is a line between irony and cheap cynicism that not everyone finds easily. The skillful ironist, one who uses the form as a weapon rather than an instrument of self-amusement, does society a service.&q uot His argument towards societys use of irony is nearly presented through his strong sentences. Gordon also provides an example of a popular show that is almost based totally around this cynical-irony he is discussing. "Take almost any episode of the much-celebrated Seinfeld television show and try to find anything more important than the lineup at a bagel store being discussed." Gordon then begins to prompting at the source of this type of overused irony, a part of society he rests some of the blame on pop-culture.