Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Shame and Forgetting in the Information Age
The purpose of Baxter's essay seems to focus on memory and the different forms that can be utilized. He begins the essay discussing his brother Tom who passed away and seems to have a learning disability enabling him to remember everything he hears but unable to comprehend written information. The style of Baxter's essay gives us an easier flow into the information he is sharing with us. He transitions from a personal story about his brother, to memory in different individuals, to personal memory abilites and how that fits into everyday lives, and to exploring the idea that minds fill in blanks to stories/situations we are unsure of the facts. I think he titled the essay Shame and Forgetting in the Information Ages because on page 153 he states "No one seems to be responsible for anything, or else the wrong people are accused of what may not, in fact, have happened at all. This is usually a complex response to shame." I take this to mean that individuals begin to feel shame, mistrust and tend to forget their own interpretation/memory of past events. He declares this the Information Age to possibly mean storytelling from one individual to another is extinct; the only for of storytelling we witness now is the "subsequent corruption or fall from that innocence" (Baxter, p.152). In the beginning of the essay he declared his brother was an outcast to the information age, society now is based on/places a large enphasis on educational information. His writing style takes personal information about multiple individuals (e.g. Ms. Bartleby). It looks at their work experience and the way in which they use information in this Information Age and how it's affecting their everyday lives. Baxter discusses how computer information is only one sourse of information and these individuals are missing the greater/useful information of everyday life.