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Reading companion

May 16, 2011

My reading companion is, for the time being, Pierre Lévy. His report to the Council of Europe about cyberculture, apart from being a course reading, constitutes an excursion in a brave new world of information availability, where the sense making is in dire need.

Lévy uses the metaphor of the big biblical flood in this sense, reinforcing the undertstanding that the feeling of loss in such a situation is a danger and offering guidance for the afflicted. His form of guidance is, in a sense surprising for me. As my university education is not in the Humanities, I keep forgetting about the evolution of mankind not in the biological sense, but in the realm of ideas and concepts. Lévy manages to keep things in perspective, demonstrating that there is a sense of continuity along History and making clear that the changes are related to the speed of communication and the number of people involved. The functions stay the same.

Pierre Lévy (2001). Cyberculture.University of Minnesota Press. (280 pp.)

Note: The title of this post is a play on the french expression “compagnon de route”, that works very well in this context. A plain book can be also, in these modern times full of technology, a companion and a guide. That, in fact, is just another metaphor for what Lévy wants to say to us.

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