Amusing ourselves to Death


Neil Postman’s seminal text predicted the irrelevance of public discourse due to our increasing fascination with the media. In light of the media manipulation and distortions that go on in mainstream and social media, Andrew Postman’s review of Neil Postman’s ruminations is timely, almost necessary!

Postman cleverly contrasted these 2 visionaries : “What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. Orwell feared those who would deprive us of information. Huxley feared those who would give us so much that we would be reduced to passivity and egoism. Orwell feared that the truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared the truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance. Orwell feared we would become a captive culture. Huxley feared we would become a trivial culture.”

Did Neil Postman actually predict the rise of Trump and Fake News?

Is our society overly fearful with information restriction/censorship (1984) and instead should be more concerned with technology sedation (BNW)?

Is the issue that the audience is being conditioned to get its information faster, in a way that is less nuanced and, of course, image-based, the root of the growing belief in the irrelevance of mainstream media?

Are similar forces affecting Singapore media or is this just an American phenomenon?

Reference article from the Guardian


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