Uncharted Territory

自分が読んで興味深く感じた英文記事を中心に取り上げる予定です

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「小説は裏社会」だった頃

 
「ネット社会は裏社会」という言葉が注目されているようなのでちょっと拝借しました。(この発言者は自分の都合に合わせて語るようなので、きっと当選していたらネット社会を肯定的に捉えていたことでしょう)

新しいメディアが出るとそれを安っぽいものとしてみなすのは歴史の必然なのかもしれません。ネットを馬鹿にする態度を18-19世紀の小説を馬鹿にする態度と比較する面白い記事がありました。

ALEXANDRA SAMUEL AUGUST 9, 2016
A NOVEL DEFENSE OF THE INTERNET


The Internet is making us stupid. Tech-enabled multitasking has destroyed our attention span. Social media is a waste of time.

These are the admonishments that lead me to periodically question my symbiotic relationship with technology, and to detach from Facebook for up to 24 hours at a time. When I do, the only way I can reliably quell my urge to connect is by losing myself in a book. That’s how I came to spend my summer vacation the way I usually do: by reading novel after novel.


小説に対して言われた言葉の例が以下です。きっと当時小説というか、出版物が人々にまで出回るようになったんで読み物を手にする人が増えたんでしょう。

[N]ovels removed one from the truth through their tendency to “give false notions of things, to pervert the consequences of human actions, and to misrepresent the ways of divine providence.”

小説が堕落の形態だなんて今からは想像できませんが、当時はそのように見られていたんですね。

Each of these concerns echoes the complaints we hear about the Internet today. We can also hear the echoes of 18th and 19th century moralists in contemporary hand-wringing over how the Internet is turning us into click-baited, porn-devouring imbeciles. Early American moralists held that novels “were subversive of the highest moral principles or, in short, were the primer of the Devil.” James Beattie condemned novel reading in 1783 because the “habit of reading them breeds a dislike to history, and all the substantial parts of knowledge; withdraws the attention from nature, and truth; and fills the mind with extravagant thoughts and too often with criminal propensities.”

小説の評価が上がったことは作者の努力もあるんでしょうが、大学で研究対象になったことも要因としてあるようです。

An analogous effort at rehabilitating the Internet is already underway. From evangelical Christians asking “What would Jesus tweet?” to the Buddhist embrace of “contemplative technologies,” established religious traditions are beginning to explore the ways in which spiritual practices can be translated or extended with digital tools. Blogging has worked its way from the margins to the center of contemporary journalism, followed by podcasting and now, virtual reality. Just as 19th century novelists consciously strived to elevate both their craft and their moral standing, the emergence of dedicated online authors and journalists has helped to elevate the caliber of online content.

But the rehabilitation of the Internet doesn’t rest entirely in the hands of online contributors—just as the rehabilitation of the novel did not occur solely due to the efforts of novelists. George Boulukos argues that the emergence of university English studies helped to elevate the status of the novel as a subject of study, and implicitly, of consumption:


19世紀の小説ってやたら長かったりしますが、今は長い小説ってそれほど見かけません。新しいメディアの出現によって古いメディア自身も変容を迫られるのでしょう。
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Yuta

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