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Theory

This category contains 6 posts

Identity and the Internet

This morning I came across a strikingly interesting article over at The Guardian concerning the intersection of social science, anonymity and the internet. The focus of the article itself is on the way that anonymous, instantaneous communication creates a culture of groupthink which validates and places even the most extreme of views within an echo-chamber, which is a point that I have been mulling over for quite some time. Tim Adams’ “How the internet created an age of rage” is a catchy title that both reinforces the “shock-value” proposition of the internet as well as explores the reasons why even such a fairly tame article needs such a tag line to get read. Continue reading

We’re All Shouting and We’re Scared Because Everyone is Shouting.

Should we seek to shape our lives into coherent narratives?

I come across bits of pieces of this and that while I spent hours at my desk not-working-but-thinking, and I have come to find that I often have a different-in-approach view of many chunks of light social theory than your usual comment leaving individual. The above line is paraphrased from a comment left concerning a blip that ran on The Awl last night by Choire Sicha.

Before moving on to actually discuss the question, I want to ruminate over my recent spat of actually caring about internet comments. I mean, on one hand they’re absolutely vile, poor excuses for discourse. On the other, they may be the best examples of actual discourse that we have available, adjusted for audience and such. I know that the comments left on a story at ThinkProgress is going to have a leftist skew (barring the inevitable trolls who come by for a shouting match) and that comments on Jezebel will skew more toward the liberal-feminist demographic. In any case, more than the content, I find the sheer lack of content to be amazingly telling.

But that’s not the point here. Continue reading

And Who Says Poetry Is Dead?

image

From a bathroom at Sarah Lawrence.

Ars Poetica

Science, I’m playing your game.

You have won.
(backed by)Feeling(backed by)Hunch(backed by)Concept(backed by)Hypothesis
(backed by)
Evidence
and your rule of law.
Within the span of hours we calculated, quite precisely, the amount of humanity left to poetry.
What? It took no time at all. The easiest scientific discovery: No one cares, anymore.
“The emotional history of our time”, is what we are left with.
And no one cares for the details of your Saturday night. We’re far too concerned
with the details of our own Saturday night.
Play possum. Play not-dead not-irrelevant and be irrelevant.

10/04/04

1. To dilute the subject, i.e. the image.
2. To employ modern fragmentation in search of some unknown center.
3. To make a separation from the internal “I”, existance in relation to the remainder of the world.
4. The poet is as much of a reader as his audience.
5. A poem is something you THINK.
6. Poetry is your breath after you have left the room.
7. To write of life, which is made up of thousands upon thousands of superimposed images- far too many to make sense of individual moments.
8. There is infinite space between the dreamer and the dream.
9. To be concerned with the interaction of things, that is, with the movement and motion around us.
10. To be absolutely concerned with the natural order of the snowflake.