Why do we see honorable characters in fantasy novels but not in reality television?

In reading about the concept of honor in Japanese society at Bronze Doors last week I noticed, as is typically the case, that the students are fascinated.  Adolescents, I find, crave a sense of honor.  I asked them if characters in science fiction and fantasy had a sense of honor, and they all acknowledged that usually such characters did have honor, and that that was partly why they loved those genres.

And then I asked if the people in reality tv shows had honor, and those who were familiar with such shows agreed that those people did not.

How strange it is that young people in our society must look to fantasy novels to enter a world in which honor is a living reality, and yet “reality” television typically shows us a society made up of human beings motivated entirely by short-term vanities and pleasures.

It seems abundantly evident to me that we evolved in tribes in which a sense of honor was a key element of society.   Our next generation of educational institutions need to re-create virtue cultures, motivated by a sense of honor, that are appropriate to the needs of the 21st century; see again, “The Creation of Conscious Culture Through Educational Innovation.”

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About Michael Strong

Co-founder, Ko School + Incubator, Conscious Capitalism, Radical Social Entrepreneurs, lead author of Be the Solution: How Entrepreneurs and Conscious Capitalists Can Solve All the World's Problems, author of The Habit of Thought: From Socratic Seminars to Socratic Practice.
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