Wednesday, May 15, 2013

My reading

I thought some of you might be interested to know what I'm currently reading; it's a book I heard someone mention in passing and which piqued my interest.  After a little investigation I bought it and am presently working my way through it.

First of all I should say that this is not really a contemporary book since it was written in the late seventies and published in 1978.  At this point I presume Mr Mander considered the option he is proposing to be feasable.  I don't think he would, today.

Let me quote you from the back cover:  

"A total departure from previous writing about television, this book is the first ever to advocate that the medium is not reformable.  Its problems are inherent in the technology itself and are so dangerous—to personal health and sanity, to the environment, and to democartic processes—that TV ought to be eliminated forever.

"Weaving personal experiences through meticulous research, the author ranges widely over aspects of tellevision that have rarely been examined and never before joined together, allowing an entirely new, frightening image to emerge. 

"The idea that all technologies are 'neutral', benign instruments that can be used well or badly, is thrown open to profound doubt.  Speaking of TV reform is, in the words of the author, 'as absurd as speaking of the reform of a technology such as guns.'"

 This is well-written book written from a surprising angle.  It's a relatively quick read and I suggest you owe it to yourself to be informed by it.  By his education and experience, this is a Luddite to be reckoned with!

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