I’ve stayed away from most of the Jolie news coverage this week, but judging by my friends’ comments, it’s been, um, ungenerous.
In case I wasn’t clear enough in my last post — I have no problem with what Jolie did nor with how she presented it. I see it as an opportunity to open the door to further conversation. The fact is, women with this mutation don’t have any good options. I feel for her, a mother, doing all she can to stay with her babies. I am that mother too.
I’m often frustrated with the difficulty of getting out the message of breast cancer. In fact, that frustration is a main factor in my decision to walk away from Uneasy Pink. It sometimes feels hopeless and pointless. I feel like the truth is often overtaken by our weird and unhealthy cultural ideas about women and by the stories of triumph that organizations like Komen love to tell and people love to hear. You know, the stories that attract donations.
It’s the particular. See, we often think, we associate understanding with abstraction. It’s just the opposite. The particular then becomes the portal on the transcendent, because it’s through the particular experience that I’m able then to communicate the emotional content of the value that is moving me.
Bingo. That’s the answer. It’s not the railing against the Pink Goliath that will change the course of how we think about this disease, it’s about communicating the particular.