Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Social Media and Pagan Residue
So, earlier this semester, we discussed Camille Paglia's magnum opus, Sexual Personae, in my graduate class at Fordham University, and in that book she argues that a strong pagan residue can be found within western culture over the past two millennia, underneath thin patina of monotheism. Further, she draws on the binary opposition of the Apollonian and the Dionysian as constituting two faces of paganism (at least of the Greco-Roman variety), with special attention and emphasis on the often overlooked or purposefully suppressed, or repressed Dionysian.
So that got me to thinking, and it occurred to me that the binary opposition of paganism could be applied to social media. This relates back to a previous post here on Blog Time Passing, About Face(book).
MySpace on the other hand is pure chaos. It is organic, relatively lawless, and altogether messy. And it reflects the oral tendencies that go along with working class culture. It is open, as space is open, rather than closed and kept captive like a book. And in this sense it is an archetypal great mother of a social network, a matix, a womb, the feminine force at its most threatening.
To be clear, I don't mean for all this to be taken literally. Rather, I am employing these categories as an exercise in critical thinking, and as a means to unleashing further insights about the nature of social networks.