Dan Wang

Dan Wang is an interesting cat. He is the author of this excellent piece called “College As An Incubator of Girardian Terror,” detailing the way that mimetic rivalry heats up in the environment of a college campus.

Dan is a graduate of the University of Rochester, after nearly getting kicked out and negotiating his way back in. He now works for Gavekal Dragonomics, a global macro research firm based in Hong Kong and Beijing.

Dan Wang

The books that he likes the best is an excellent account.

His analysis of the hit show Big Little Lies shows his acute insight into mimetic theory:

“I haven’t watched much TV recently, but the new show I’ve liked best is *Big Little Lies* on HBO. Rich suburban moms, with desires mediated by their children, are incited towards violence against each other in gorgeous Monterey, California. Who can resist?

The parents have drawn their battle lines by the first episode. The Girardian themes get heavier and heavier throughout the series, until the astonishing finale, which culminates in violent murder. Mimetic contagion races through the group of mothers, who battle over progressively higher stakes, until the show ends with communal violence against a mysterious outsider, the death of whom unites the community in frolicking harmony. The murder takes place during a masquerade-like public performance, over flames, alcohol, and music; the perpetrators each have a hand in violence; scenes of a beating are interspersed with the breaking of Pacific waves on rocks in all directions. That murder unites feuding groups under a lie, and previously lingering questions are papered over, without resolution nor need of one.”

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