#027 Reflections In Wonderland with Gwenda-lin Grewal

 Gwenda-lin and Monica at Caveat / Photography by Shot By Rod

Gwenda-lin and Monica at Caveat / Photography by Shot By Rod

The dress that comes to me… agrees with me, and me with it, and we resemble one another… The dress dresses a woman I have never known and who is also me.’ …. here I am, dressed at the closest point to myself. Almost in myself.
— Hélène Cixous

In this episode you’ll learn about creativity as a way of revealing and reflecting our true selves. The guest, Dr. Gwenda-lin Grewal, is a professor of philosophy, a writer, and a fashion designer who specializes in ancient Greek philosophy. By the end of this episode you’ll discover what philosophy, fashion, and “Alice and Wonderland” can teach us about creativity in our everyday lives. #thehappierhour

PREVIOUS EPISODE ON CREATIVITY:

#026 The Third Way With Émilie Du Châtelet and Amber Baldet

Aletheia (ἀλήθεια), represents Truth, is undressed in the Greek tradition, figured as a nude.

Søren Kierkegaard notes that ‘in order to swim one takes off all one’s clothes – in order to aspire to the truth one must undress in a far more inward sense’.

Martin Heidegger reprised the classical notion of aletheia, he imagined nothing as stark as naked truth, but figured something more like a slow dawning realization of that which is already there: an evocative kind of disclosure of the world to the beings within it.

On the other hand, as Susan Sontag stated, Perhaps there is ‘[no] opposition between a style one assumes and one’s “true” being… In almost every case, our manner of appearing is our manner of being.’

And then of course we have good ol’ Friedrich Nietzsche who believed Truth was more like as series of performance. The world appears in ever changing disguises, to be experienced aesthetically.

It is only shallow people who do not judge by appearances. The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible. - Oscar Wilde

How puzzling all these changes are! I’m never sure what I’m going to be, from one minute to another. - Lewis Carroll, ‘Alice In Wonderland’

In what ways do you truthfully present your inner self to the outside world and in what ways to hide it?
— QUESTION OF THE EPISODE

ABOUT GWENDA-LIN GREWAL

Gwenda-lin Grewal is a professor of philosophy, a writer, and a fashion designer. After receiving a joint Ph.D. in Philosophy and Classics from Tulane University, she was awarded a post-doctoral fellowship at Yale University, followed by teaching positions at the University of Dallas and its sister campus in Rome, Italy. She fell through the looking glass in 2010, and founded Hardly Alice—a whimsical wonderland of highbrow threads that includes both garments and musings. Dr. Grewal has been teaching philosophy full-time at Sarah Lawrence College since 2015. She also writes a column for Space Nation and has mysterious adventures in New York City. She is currently finishing two books—one on thinking and death, the other on philosophy and fashion.  

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