Saturday, May 1, 2010

Diasporic alienation

The New York based Montenegrin singer Ekrem Jevric seems to summarize Durkheim's thoughts on anomie quite succinctly in his recent YouTube video "Kuca poso":

In "The Division of Labour in Society" from 1893, Durkheim considers anomie a state of despair and hopelessness resulting from the breakdown of norms and social networks in industrial (mechanical) society. Durkheim claims that traditional (organic) societies are full of social relationships that create meaning for individuals, hindering such breakdowns.

Ekrem Jevric would agree with Durkheim completely, if he had ever read him. Jevric's song describes dissillusionment with life in the big city. He sings that he only goes back and forth from home to work among the giant skyscrapers of New York, the city where batalions of women walk the street, but have forgotten their children.

Evo, zivim u Njujorku gradu. Zivim, radim, a i samo radim.
Kuca poso, poso kuca. Eto sta znam. Nista ne znam, a dze da znam.

Here, I live in New York, in the city. I live, I work, but I only work.
Home-work, work-home. What do I know, I don't know anything. And where would I know it?

A month after its release, Kuca poso has nearly 2 million hits on YouTube.

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