Thursday, July 1, 2010

Assignment 1.1-Due 7/01/2010

The essay read is Shame and Forgettin in the Information Age by Charles Baxter. The essays controlling purpose focuses on his interst in memory and an overarching concept that being book/work smart is not everything. Baxter's idea about memory and living everyday through person to person communication begins with his handicap brother who is unable to retain information from books and writings. He labels this the information age, meaning most of our information is derived from books or educational basis and we are losing the storytelling process and face to face discussions. Baxter's flow with the text begins to show the reader the importance of his concept of memory and the abilities it holds, remembering certain memories and its ability to delete other memories. Baxter's goal of accomplishment seems to be to open reader's eyes to the amazing powers or memory and how we are placing our majority of focus on reading and writing communciation. The essay attempts to allow the reader to explore their interpretation of the world, technology, memory, forgetting, and shame. Numerous times in the text Baxter addresses his understanding of these five interconnecting aspects of the world but does not directly come out and say it for the reader. By Baxter discussing memory and giving us bits of his personal opinion it allows the reader to fully explore the text from a semi unbiased perspective and explore their own thoughts about the world, technology, memory, forgetting and shame.

Examples from Text
  • "Tome was an outcast of the information age. Perhaps every damily has one" (p.141)
  • "People here often take considerable pride in their minds and more particularly in their memories" (p. 144)
  • "our memories' are memories of our experiences in narrative form" (p. 144)
  • "Strategic amnesia has everything to do with the desire to create or destroy peronal history" (p. 145)
  • "No one can absorb all the information" (p. 146)
  • "Is it forgetfulness or is it Alzheimer's" (p. 146)
  • "Forgetfulness means that your mind may have crashed" (p.148)
  • "Benjamin argues that the explosion of information in the modern age is denying us something precious: 'the ability to exchange experiences.' That is, storytelling." (p.149)
  • "Whatevery the job is that she must do, they wanted it done yesterday" (p. 149)
  • "There aren't any stories there, unless her coworkers are seducing or cheating or harassing each other, always a possibility" (p.150)
  • 2nd paragraph on page 150 holds important information
  • "Even memoir argues that a personal memory is precious" (p.151)
  • "What you remember is key to who you are (p.151)
  • "...because they have taken seriously the condition of inocence and the subsequent corruption or fall from that innocence, and seen it in relation to storytelling." (p.152)
  • "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." (p.153)
  • "If your memory of your experiences is precious, then your father has, at least in a patriarchal culture, a special and almost sacred power to confirm a history." (p.153)
  • "The same of forgetting." (p.155)

1 comment:

  1. Hello,

    You made a good point in your introduction that Baxter is saying "being book/work smart is not everything." Only getting information from books means we are losing the storytelling process.