Thursday, April 17, 2014

On Culture and Genuises

"Geniuses do not arise out of a vacuum. They are the product of years—often centuries—of collective input from dozens of individuals. Most of these individuals will probably be unaware of the heritage they are contributing to, yet their collective efforts help to foster and sustain a culture in which greatness can thrive." Saints and Scoundrels, page 142


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Monday, March 31, 2014

Social Media and Personal Autonomy

"A deep sense of radical autonomy has been intensified by the potent conjunction of consumerism with new communication media. By harnessing the impulse of radical autonomy, our digital media makes it possible for us to choose our own virtual communities instead of being attentive to the needs of those around us. As our social nourishment is increasingly dislocated from the real world of time and space, our social spaces come to be something we can approach and control as consumers. Moreover, as social interaction is increasingly being folded into digital technology, our relationships become an assemblage of online interactions disconnected from the larger context of people’s lives and shared experiences. Family relationships have been the primary casualty of these shifts. The 24/7 freneticism of non-stop stimulation via social media means that we have very little incentive to cultivate the dispositions necessary for attentive interaction with those closest to us, including those within our own families."

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