Monday, February 11, 2008

Amusing Ourselves to Death

I just finished this book, and highly recommend it. It's written by a secular sociologist who has incredibly fascinating views on how television has effected politics, religion, education, public discourse, and journalism in America. From the back cover of the book: "The prophetic landmark work exploring the corrosive effects of electronic media on a democratic society."

And, one of my favorite quotes in the book by a gentleman named Henry David Thoreau about the dangers of the telegraph when it was invented:

"We are in great haste to construct a magnetic telegraph from Maine to Texas; but Maine and Texas, it may be, have nothing important to communicate.... We are eager to tunnel under the Atlantic and bring the old world some weeks nearer to the new; but perchance the first news that will leak through into the broad flapping American ear will be that Princess Adelaide has the whooping cough."

And headlining in the news (to prove his point): "Britney's Dad Didn't Trust Her Manager" http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20177604,00.html

3 comments:

Anna said...

that sounds like a good book. I watch way too much TV and spend way too much time on the computer. wonder if it would help me kick the habit? :)

John L. said...

yeah I spoke about that subject on my blog.

Brian G. Hedges said...

I've just started this book recently - after our conversation at Christmas. Looks good, but I'm not deep enough in to know what I think yet.

I'm glad you guys are in the blogosphere now!