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Wednesday, November 21, 2012


Derived from Latin proclivitas meaning a downward slope, or a propensity, a proclivity is a predisposition and inclination towards something; usually morally wrong [1]. The proclivity towards something may be of habit, of some action or a thing. The strong inherent tendency to act objectionably may be the product of pleasure, spite or a desire for change.
The OED defines wrong as morally unjust or improper; it is the negation of goodness and equity [2]. The predisposition to do something wrong, to act a certain way or to have a certain opinion are tendencies acquired through experience. In my experience, proclivities towards things are based on events. The gravity of events and their importance are influential to an individual’s inclinations. As an example, sentiments of angst and of confinement can be negated through acts of disorder, disobeying, unlawfulness and fleeing. When put into scenarios where one is no longer in control, one may flee or deal with the situation immorally.
A proclivity is more simply a form of disobeying; some individuals may feel an anxiety, remorse and guilt for their lack of freedom and ability to have effect in their own lives [4]. In order to regain freedom, one may act illegally to prove and show confidence in the freedom of their actions.
Not all proclivities are rooted in spite; quite often, immoral inclinations are inspired by thrill and pleasure. The thrills of questionable acts are satisfying because they disregard consequences and risks involved: capture; injury; death; incarceration; failure. Proclivities are defined as regular acts, and occur more often as thoughts. Individuals may be predisposed to act objectionably because of their upbringing, traumatic events in their lives, boredom, or as a means of survival. One’s personal history and self-confidence are essential in the understanding of predispositions.
In my own experience, a proclivity is mostly rooted in enjoyment, though it may also be considered as a way to create variance in daily life; the art of painting graffiti is one way to diverge from a normal lawful life. The conditions in which a graffiti writer paints will always be different; although the act is regular the predisposition to paint graffiti exists because the enjoyment and conditions will always be unique. The enjoyment of graffiti does not come from the actual act of vandalism. The evasion from authorities and artistic progress of a graffiti writer are important aspects as to why graffiti painting is a proclivity. Although graffiti is immoral and illegal, the painters conduct themselves with their own set of morals; there are reasons why not all buildings are covered in graffiti.
Proclivities are regular predispositions towards something; these predispositions exist because the results of the actions are expected to be unique, if not equally gratifying, every time.

[1]   “proclivity, n.” Oxford University Press, OED Online, http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/151851?redirectedFrom=proclivity+#eid (accessed November 20, 2012).
[2]   “wrong, n2.” Oxford University Press, OED Online, http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/230800?rskey=HG5jK7&result=2&isAdvanced=false#eid (accessed November 20, 2012).
[3]   “predisposition, n.” Oxford University Press, OED Online, http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/149880?redirectedFrom=predisposition#eid (accessed November 20, 2012).
[4]   “angst, n.” Oxford University Press, OED Online, http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/7626?redirectedFrom=angst+#eid (accessed November 20, 2012).

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