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Astra Taylor, Misogyny and the Cult of Internet Openness

Posted on April 11th, 2014 at 17:56 by John Sinteur in category: News -- Write a comment


Sometimes I feel like I’m living in a science-fiction novel, because my region is so afflicted with people who stare at the tiny screens in their hands on trains, in restaurants, while crossing the street, and too often while driving. San Francisco is, after all, where director Phil Kaufman set the 1978 remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers, the movie wherein a ferny spore-spouting form of alien life colonizes human beings so that they become zombie-like figures.

In the movies, such colonization took place secretly, or by force, or both: it was a war, and (once upon a time) an allegory for the Cold War and a possible communist takeover. Today, however — Hypercapitalism Invades! — we not only choose to carry around those mobile devices, but pay corporations hefty monthly fees to do so. In return, we get to voluntarily join the great hive of people being in touch all the time, so much so that human nature seems in the process of being remade, with the young immersed in a kind of contact that makes solitude seem like polar ice, something that’s melting away.

  1. Interesting article. It is often underestimated how hateful and stupid people can be especially when showing off to one another.

    The “women-are-raising-children-and-doing-all-the-housework*-so-they-don’t-have-time-to-participate” argument is not credible where the average family is two children and there are automatic washing machines etc. Even less so for the large number of childfree people.

    How people spend their leisure time is very varied although there are gender differences. Go back 60 years, many women were reading, gardening or doing handicrafts when men were gardening, tinkering with cars, motorbikes or doing whatever radio amateurs do**.

    Now everyone watches screens addictively and claim they have no time. Corporatism is winning.

    * News to these martyrs (if they exist): you will not die from an untidy house. You are suffering from OCD.

    ** I actually know the answer to this – talking about the weather and the size of their “antennas”.

  2. Time to move to France, where a daily 11 hour break in remote access to the workplace (i.e. email) is being mandated.

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