Amusing Ourselves to Death Synthesis Essay

Topics: Knowledge, Richard Feynman, Aldous Huxley Pages: 4 (1491 words) Published: September 13, 2013
Synthesis Essay
If a question was asked, any question, today’s automatic answer is to find the solution through technology. We’ve grown dependant on the ticking of clocks, the virtual world of the internet, and the convenience of our phones. A difficult concept for us to grasp, however, is merely thirty years ago most of these did not existed. So how has this affected our minds? Have we turned our brains into a living computer, or are we so dependent on outside answers that we’ve ceased thinking for ourselves? In today’s society we’ve entered a state of ignorant bliss about how little knowledge and wisdom we truly hold. Neil Postman (1984), the author of “Amusing Ourselves to Death” and an educator, tackled the now apparent fact that unlike George Orwell’s prediction that our rights to thinking would be ripped away, Aldous Huxley’s prediction that we will gladly hand them away voluntarily has become more and more true. Both Orwell and Huxley are English authors. (Postman, 1984) We allow our information to be fed to us by the television which trivializes it, and the internet which blends opinion and fact together so intricately that it is intermixed beyond comprehension. Yet we process this information, we build our thoughts and opinions around what the other misinformed populous insists is fact. But we are aware of the lies and incomplete facts out there, so when the truth does come out, it is unrecognizable. Nicholas Carr (2008) wonders of our ability to separate how we think and how a computer processes input in his article “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” He complains of a recent inability to pay attention to books for long periods of time. He blames this on receiving his information online in quick snippets, and reading novels has become a chore to him. Carr mentions Lewis Mumford, a cultural critic, who speaks of the invention of the clock. He degrades the clock, saying “In deciding when to eat, to work, to sleep, to rise, we stopped listening to our senses...

Cited: Carr, Nicholas. (2008). Is Google Making Us Stupid? [PDF document]. Retrieved from:
Feynman, Richard. (1985). O Americano, Outra Vez! [PDF document]. Retrieved from:
McCullough, David. (2008). The Love of Learning [PDF document]. Retrieved from:
Perry, William. (1970). Examsmanship and the Liberal Arts [PDF document]. Retrieved from
Postman, Neil. (1984). Amusing Ourselves to Death [PDF document]. Retrieved from
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