September 21, 2007

Socialism and print culture

Here’s an interesting article from the July-August isssue of New Left Review relating the history of socialism to the history of print culture. It suggests, without quite stating it, that the decline of socialism is tied to the decline of print culture, and that by extension the future of socialism will be tied to a transformation of its vocabulary and its ideas in adaptation to the culture of new media. Hard to know what that means in practical terms!!

Thanks to Erik Estep for sharing this link with the SRRT list.

I’m shocked and appalled that you’re shocked and appalled

A creative MIT student made a thing out of a circuit board and some LEDs and wore it on her shirt. She’s young, 19, so it’s understandable that she didn’t quite understand how things are in airports these days, and when she walked into Logan Airport she was surrounded at gunpoint by security men who suspected her of carrying an explosive device.

Her self-description: “In a sentence, I’m an inventor, artist, engineer, and student, I love to build things and I love crazy ideas.”

The head of security: “I‚Äôm shocked and appalled that somebody would wear this type of device to an airport.”

Lots of comments on blogs saying that she is an idiot. She’s a college sophomore. Not many comments about what a loss it is to our culture that simple creativity generates such paranoia.

Note that Boston’s police were the same ones who freaked out about the Aqua Teen Hunger Force ad campaign and arrested the artists there.