Headline, December 17 2019/ '' ' TWITTER ERA TWANGS ' ''


ESSAY THEN : AUTOFICTION FOR THE TWITTER ERA. What tweets and emojis have done to the world of novel in our time.

Lets get right to the overwhelming question : What is does it mean to experience something?

Until the 2010s, if you were reading, it generally meant you weren't doing it online. Though change has been in the offering, this was the decade that irreversibly altered how we consume text - when the smartphone was transformed from a marvel to a staple.

Suddenly, the sharpest cultural and political analysis came in the form of distracted boyfriend meme. Racists deployed a playful cartoon frog to sugar their messages. From the Arab Spring onward, the best reporters were often panicked bystanders with Twitter accounts.

One of the strangest effects of this transition was that it rekindled very ancient human behaviors. The scroll, one of the earliest technologies for reading, returned, as did the oldest form of writing, the ideogram, reincarnated in the emoji panel.

In this weird narrow sense, opening a paperback in 2019 was more modern than texting with your friends.

That seems ridiculous right until it spills over into being obvious. After all who could contest the idea that communications, behind a ceaseless inflow of data, have been continually evolving to target ever more primitive brain functions?

Think of the obscurely nauseous, casino ping of tugging downward on Instagram and seeing it refresh with a notification, the instant dopamine rush.

The scroll and the ideogram died out because of their simplicity, only to have been revived for that reason.

The scroll is a frictionless waterfall on the screen. And while an entire alphabet of ideograms would be unusably bulky, a handful of key ones, scattered into our language, condense thousands of complicated reactions into a few dozen universal symbols.

It would seem as if few times in history could be less hospitable to literature.

Not even 20 years ago, we mostly read about things in lag, on thin slices of tree, whereas now we do - well, less and less of this. Yet instead of technology superannuating literature once for all, it seems to have created a space in our minds for it.

The riches example of this may be the fiction that, even from this minimal distance, seems destined to define the last decade : the work of Elena Ferrante and Karl Ove Knausgaard.

In overlapping moments, these two respective European respective multivolume novels won huge rapid fame - for being highly personal, very long and perhaps more than anything for the unusual, almost guilty intensity with each people devoured them.

[As the Times's Dwight Garner memorably commented, reading the first volumes of Knausgaard's ''MY STRUGGLE'' was like ''falling into malarial fever.'']

Above all, they were close to identical identical in their most serious and unexpected offer to the reader : unmediated access, over many pages, to precisely one other consciousness.

Inevitable in retrospect, at the time, it seemed like a shocking development.

The novel thrives on social repercussions, and the fiction that was fashionable during the first 10 years of the century was no exception. Writers produced big, clever, glossy sagas of family and friendship, in a fretfully bravura style that reached its fullest expression in books like ''White Teeth,'' by Zadie Smith' ''The Corrections,'' by Jonathan Frenzen; and ''A Visit From the Goon Squad,'' by Jennifer Egan.

They were irradiated by the conviction that an author could observe life at the turn of the millennium and repackage it for readers with a set of decisive, fine grained interpretations. 

Most of us now alive are in the unique position of having been so both before and after the revolution of the Internet.

We're a lost group - to me, anyway, even now, none of my technological habits seem inevitable.

There's still a sense that this vast binge of novelty will stop and we'll arrive at some levelheaded equilibrium between then and now.

That's no doubt delusional. Still writers like Knausgaard and Ferranta, for whom I fell just as hard as others readers did, suggest nothing startling and comforting :

That each of us is reposed something too deep to name or alter, and which for that very reason has survived, for now, the glittering surfaces of our age.

A self, I suppose.

The Honor and serving of the Latest Master Writings for the Twitter era, continues. The World Students Society thanks author Charles Finch for this unique essay.

With respectful dedication to the Writers, Students, Professors and Teachers of the world.

See Ya all prepare and register for Great Global Elections on The World Students Society : wssciw.blogspot.com and Twitter - !E-WOW! - The Ecosystem 2011:

''' Within & Without '''

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


Post a Comment

Grace A Comment!