Hi, I’m Kashiefah Chetty

By my very nature, I ask the difficult and subversive questions.

I write to question the world and what happens around me.

I write to tell the hard-to-hear truths.

I write to emancipate myself from destructive illusions.

I write about my human experience to make sense of the journey called life.

I write as a 33-year-old mother, to leave a fountain of wisdom and stories for my children to build their children's legacy on.

I write as a distracted Psychology student, struggling to prepare for my exams. I procrastinate by distracting myself with this About page.

I write because I grapple to write, even though writing is the talent I was blessed with.

I write to possibly create a new world, one story at a time.

Welcome.

Ten years ago Richard Carlson’s little book, Don’t sweat the small stuff … and it’s all small stuff, had already sold more than 8 million copies worldwide. The book provides guidelines for dealing with life’s problems and outlines strategies to respond to life more gracefully. The 100 brief chapters that make up the book include a chapter entitled Become an anthropologist. Why did Carlson include anthropology in a self-help book? This is what he says: Anthropology is a science dealing with man (we would say ‘humans’) and his (their) origins. (However), I’ll conveniently redefine anthropology as ‘being interested, without judgement, in the way other people choose to live and behave.’ This strategy is geared toward developing your compassion, as well as a way of becoming more patient. Beyond that, however, being interested in the way other people act is a way of replacing judgements with loving-kindness. When you are genuinely curious about the way someone reacts or the way they feel about something, it’s unlikely that you will also be annoyed. In this way, becoming an anthropologist is a way of becoming less frustrated by the actions of others. When someone acts in a way that seems strange to you, rather than reacting in your usual way, such as, ‘I can’t believe they would do that,’ instead say something to yourself like ‘I see, that must be the way she sees things in her world. Very interesting!’ In order for this strategy to help you, you have to be genuine. There’s a fine line between being ‘interested’ and being arrogant as if secretly you believe that your way is better. (Carlson 1997:111–112)”

Extract from my 2017 UNISA Anthropology study guide

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