Download Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of by Neil Postman PDF

By Neil Postman

ISBN-10: 0140094385

ISBN-13: 9780140094381

A super strong and critical book....This is a brutal indictment Postman has laid down and, as far as i will be able to see, an irrefutable one. --Jonathan Yardley, Washington put up ebook international.

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Extra info for Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business

Example text

The third actually offered something for sale, and, in fact, is not unlike real estate advertisements one might see in today's New York Times: At Oysterbay, on Long Island in the Province of N. York. There is a very good Fulling-Mill, to be Let or Sold, as also a Plantation, having on it a large new Brick house, and another good house by it for a Kitchen & workhouse, with a Barn, Stable a young Orchard and 20 acres clear land. the Mill is to be Let with or without the Plantation; Enquire of Mr.

Or voiced terse expressions of scorn ("Answer that one, if you can"). Applause was frequent, usually reserved for a humorous or elegant phrase or a cogent point. At the first debate in Ottowa, Douglas responded to lengthy applause with a remarkable and revealing statement. "My friends," he said, "silence will be more acceptable to me in the discussion of these questions than applause. " 3 As to the conscience of the audience, or even its judgment, it is difficult to say very much. But as to its understanding, a great deal can be assumed.

Advertising was, as Stephen Douglas said in another context, intended to appeal to understanding, not to passions. This is not to say that during the period of typographic display, the claims that were put forward were true. Words cannot guarantee their truth content. Rather, they assemble a context in which the question, Is this true or false? is relevant. In the 1890's that context was shattered, first by the massive intrusion of illustrations and photographs, then by the nonpropositional use of language.

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Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business by Neil Postman


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