Reading Blog 18 -“Nomadicity”

Todd Gitlin’s article on nomadicity focuses on the intriguing paradox of culture becoming more independent by putting our social and entertainment outlets into more mobile and portable devices.  He starts with a time line of sorts of various items, noting how as it evolves, it gets smaller and easier to carry around.  Due to this, we end up with the ability to go further away from our social circles and still stay in touch.  As personal entertainment grew however, so did people’s tendency to infringe on the rights others have to dictate their personal spaces, what with cell phones ringing, boom box’s blaring, and other “digital noises” spilling over private bubbles.  He also notes that this ability to be connected at all times leads to the destruction of serialization, which is losing one’s individuality and being reduced to a function (think waiting in a line; you’re just someone else in line).  We can use our connections to constantly project individuality.  There’s a paradox here; this new connectedness-spirit, where we seek to take control of our own surroundings through digital means, makes us freely accessible to the wills of other people.  We are always connected, always able to be reached, and that controls us.


Discussion Q’s:

– Does nomadicity encourage more connectivity?

– is it a good idea to ‘disconnect’ from time to time?


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