Technology and mediation

“For some, no doubt it is less comforting to think of rural Bangladeshis using cell phones than to imagine them sharing the experiences of the day at the hearth with their families. But the fact that the rural communities in developing nations can and do use cell technology brings them just that much closer to their “developed” counterparts. Not in the sense of having more technology at their disposal, but in the sense of thinking about communicating with people in similar ways, of being accustomed to maintaining relationships over distances, of acting on one’s desire to talk at the moment one has it, of possessing the confidence and the technology to project one’s needs and desires towards disembodied authorities and remote friends when one needs to.”

“The pursuit of authenticity in the attributes of the other constitutes a degraded form of critique. Its fundamental predicate – as convenient for the marketing executive as it is for the travel agent – is that we question and modify our own practices and seek authenticity in those of others.”

William Ray, The Logic of Culture, pp. 175-176, p. 178.

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