'Good Words' for January 2019
Sad stories, manly weeping, and the 'self' in the social media age
There are words on the internet — a lot of words. Here are a few that won’t disrespect your time or waste your attention.
The Compelling Hopefulness of Sad Stories – Christ & Pop Culture
The debut entry in K.B. Hoyle’s new column, Storied speaks to my soul. I feel sadness more often and more acutely than I ever have before but, counterintuitively, I’m also more hopeful.
In sadness there is a search for meaning. A questioning and brokenness. And in barren brokenness, sometimes all we are left with is faith.
I know I’ll be coming back to Storied again and again because I’m a natural Puddleglum; I need the hope good stories — even the sad ones — provide.
An interesting little essay into the history of men crying. When exactly did we decide that it was unmanly to cry — to weep in public, even? The author isn’t certain, but it appears to be a fairly recent development.
…the gender gap in crying seems to be a recent development. Historical and literary evidence suggests that, in the past, not only did men cry in public, but no one saw it as feminine or shameful. In fact, male weeping was regarded as normal in almost every part of the world for most of recorded history.
The ‘Data Self’ and ‘Social Self’ – The Frailest Thing
I first encountered L.M. Sacasas’ writing in The New Atlantis and have since started following his blog with interest. I began questioning whether my relationship to the latest technological tools was healthy and/or helpful in 2018 and I expect to continue doing so in 2019.
The data self, both as a new kind of subjectivity and as a name for the only self social media companies care about, is built upon the social self. Or, more to the point, the data self, in the latter sense, is a parasite that lives off of what James calls the social self.
Bonus: How Facebook Deforms Us - The New Atlantis
Did you read the articles? Do you have thoughts despite not reading the articles? Post what you’ve got in the comments and I’ll join you shortly.