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Self-awareness

From Academic Kids

Self-awareness is the ability to perceive one's own existence, including one's own traits, feelings and behaviours. In an epistemological sense, self-awareness is a personal understanding of the very core of one's own identity. It is the basis for many other human traits, such as accountability and consciousness, and as such is often the subject of debate among philosophers. Self-awareness can be perceived as a trait that people possess to varying degrees beyond the most basic sentience that defines human awareness. This trait is one that is normally taken for granted, resulting in a general ignorance of one's self that manifests as odd contradictory behavior. This ignorance of one's own self is viewed in existentialism and Zen Buddhism as the source of much human suffering, as noted by the famous saying from Zen Buddhism "we are each the source of our own suffering."

Self-awareness in theater

In theater, self-awareness refers to a fictional character who is depicted as breaking character, perhaps by breaking the fourth wall. In some plays, such as Six Characters in Search of an Author, this may be associated with inviting the audience to continue their suspension of disbelief; that is to say, to believe that the characters depicted by the cast are "really" self-aware fictional characters who know that they are fictional characters, but can do nothing about it.

Relationship of theater to self-awareness

There is a possible fractal correlation between the experience of the theater audience and individual self-awarenesss. As actors and audiences must not 'break' the fourth wall in order to maintain context, so individuals must not be aware of the artificial, or the constructed perception of his or her reality. This suggests that self-awareness is an artificial continuum just as theater is. Theatrical efforts such as Six Characters in Search of an Author or say, The Wizard of Oz, construct yet another layer of the fourth wall, but they do not destroy the primary illusion. Refer to Erving Goffman's Frame Analysis: An Essay on the Organization of Experience.

See also

ru:Самосознание

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