The anti-theorist is alive and well in the age of unreason.

The cycle: a work is created, other works are created, a theorist outlines a theory that identifies a pattern among those works, the anti-theorist critiques the theory.

The anti-theorist is the least-effort role, often done from the couch or the balcony. It is sweatless and spineless and sensational.

They jump on the heap, the last to do so, and only when all the cards have been placed on the table.

They declare themselves to be deconstructionists, as if anyone was praising the child on the beach who smashes sandcastles. They declare themselves to be progressive, as if removing the road made the destination clearer. They declare themselves against dangerous ideas, as if the ideology of the negative is not a more malleable and possessive spirit.

They wish the page blank and unobjectionable.

The anti-theorist is glad for the theorist, because without the theories, there would be nothing to critique. The anti-theorist has created nothing and been in favor of nothing and declared all that is good to be nothing.

To the anti-theorist: you are the heckler in the back of the room that adds no music to the performance, only discord. You are the disobedient child who destroys the artistic work of a sibling out of jealousy. You are the snobbish airhead who insists they can do better with their hands tied behind their back while they hang sluggishly at their side.

Rather, create. It is easy to be against; whole political movements and schemes are built on against. It harder to be for. For can be assaulted and subjected to ridicule and critique. For is vulnerability and risk. For is effort.

Say what is good. Say what is true.

Better to irrigate deserts than cut down jungles.

3 thoughts on “Anti-Theorists

  1. I accept the irony of creating a theory that criticizes people who criticize theories. Hence the last three paragraphs.

  2. My mind immediately goes to “nogames” types whose opinions seem quite odd and divorced from practical experience, which is of course because they do not play any games and thus their opinion is not based on anything.

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