Authorship is less urgent in such a collectivity of wisdoms -- so much so that on occasion a modern writer enmeshed in its study will forget to assign or attribute authorship to the originating writer -- as we learned last year.
A mashup culture is not new to us and maybe that is why we feel comfortable surfing the Talmudic sea of cyberspace.
Jason Lanier, Kakutani says,
... astutely points out in his new book, “You Are Not a Gadget,” of how online collectivism, social networking and popular software designs are changing the way people think and process information, a question of what becomes of originality and imagination in a world that prizes “metaness” and regards the mash-up as “more important than the sources who were mashed.”The end of text has been a long time coming, as Kakutani muses that,
...deconstruction, which became fashionable in American academia in the 1980s, it enshrined individual readers’ subjective responses to a text over the text itself, thereby suggesting that the very idea of the author (and any sense of original intent) was dead.Aside: Like a guppy swimming upstream, we fight the deconstructive tides in our current book on the prayers of the synagogue in description that targets the text, author, original intent, archetypal meaning, or as we used to call it, the meaning of the content.
These are the books relevant to the Kakutani essay:
REALITY HUNGER: A MANIFESTO
By David Shields
YOU ARE NOT A GADGET:
By Jaron Lanier
THE SHALLOWS: WHAT THE INTERNET IS DOING TO OUR BRAINSBy Nicholas Carr
288 pages. W. W. Norton & Company. $26.95. (Scheduled for release in June.)
TRUE ENOUGH: LEARNING TO LIVE IN A POST-FACT SOCIETY
By Farhad Manjoo
THE AGE OF AMERICAN UNREASON
By Susan Jacoby
INFOTOPIA: HOW MANY MINDS PRODUCE KNOWLEDGE
By Cass R. Sunstein
GOING TO EXTREMES: HOW LIKE MINDS UNITE AND DIVIDE
By Cass R. Sunstein.
THE CULT OF THE AMATEUR
By Andrew Keen