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Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 27. Dezember 2005

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Examines the ways in which television has transformed public discourse--in politics, education, religion, science, and elsewhere--into a form of entertainment that undermines exposition, explanation and knowledge. -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.

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Neil Postman (1931–2003) was chairman of the Department of Communication Arts at New York University and founder of its Media Ecology program. He wrote more than twenty books.

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3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Barron Laycock am 12. Mai 2000
Format: Taschenbuch
For anyone interested in exploring the meaning of the rapid eclipse of ordinary reality and how it is being changed and altered by the rise of the electronic media, this book is very important. From the introduction and Postman's tongue-in-cheek comments about the novel 1984, his observations regarding the cogency of British author Aldous Huxley's technotronic nightmare vision in "Brave New World" through out the book right up to its conclusion, Postman binds your interest by illustrating and documenting how the rise of the elecrtonic media and its manipulation of what you see in way of news and entertainment has inexorably changed the meanings,purposes and ultimate uses of politics, economics, and technology. As Huxley himslef warned, totalitarian societies need not arise through violent overthrow of the democracies using brutality, cruelty and violence, but can also occur whenever the citizenry is successfully deluded into apathy by petty diversions and entertainments, as well. Postman shows how the electronic media's presentation of facts and fcition in an entertaining fashion diverts us, channeling our attention, money, and energies in ways that make us much more susceptible to social, political and economic manipulation and eventual subjugation. The book is a bit difficult to read at points, but well worth a sustained effort and a little concentration. For any citizen concerned about how the media is rapidly changing the rules of political, social, and economic engagement, and what it portends for the future, this book is a must read. And follow it up with Postman's book "Technopoly", which picks up where this book leaves off.
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3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von rareoopdvds am 5. Januar 2000
Format: Taschenbuch
Neil Postman's book 'Amusing Ourselves To Death' is an excellent look at the world today (more accurately in 1985). He explains that there is no need to fear George Orwell's vision of 1984, but rather to fear an older title of Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. One which takes away freedom, the latter giving you all the freedom you want. Funny and witty, Postman gives a top rate analysis of the current media (second to McLuhan). I dont see this book as a prediction of any sort, but rather observing the direction the media of print and television is headed. Television has been given so much authority that it does not matter whats on it, so much that its on. Postman declares that television has the power to do away with books by the sheer hypnotic power that television has over print. And this, by being in a trance and reclining in our sofas to and forgetting about the world (and what the GOVT is doing) is just as fatal as the government getting involved in every aspect of our lives. This book is a nice read with some profoundness to it which will change your perspective on 1984, television and the way you live.
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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Ein Kunde am 28. Juni 1998
Format: Taschenbuch
Like a previous reviewer, I've been skeptical about the effects of commercial television, radio, music, magz, etc on me for some time. If you feel manipulated by the pro-consumerist propaganda satiating our airwaves, but can't break your addiction to the entertainment, this title is for you. It helped me to develop a more accurate understanding of the effects of popular TV/Radio/Magz on my conciousness.
Postman succinctly reasons why mass media can be harmful to your health. He delves into the psychology behind the commercials and the bias of mediums, specifically typography vs, television. The short book(160+ pgs Penguin paperback) took me several months to finish because of its plethora of meticulously crafted ideas - many leaving behind mushroom clouds in my mind.
After reading this book, I decided to pick up Huxley's "Brave New World". If you haven't read it, check it out. Mustapha Mond would definitely have kept "Amusing Ourselves to Death" in his safe! And I'm not sure if TV/Radio etc is the "soma" or the "hypnopaedic conditioning" - or both. But, you definitely don't have to look 600 years into the future to see some traces of the issues he raises, such as mass media's homogenizing effect on society. Are we being Bokanovskified? Postman has hereby penned a survivors manual - coincidentally released in 1984, yet eschewing Orwell's prophecy in favor of Huxley's vision.
I hope that in a subsequent edition Postman addresses the epistimology of the burgeoning internet and its world wide web that may someday esnare us all just like TV.
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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Ein Kunde am 4. Januar 2000
Format: Taschenbuch
This is simply a superb book, a real "classic" in its field. The author's logic and his data are absolutely overwhelming. The only possible flaw is that it is based on data 2 decades old. For a current update on the data and research in this field I would also strongly recommend Grossman & DeGaetano's "Stop Teaching Our Kids to Kill," which has the added benefit of addressing the impact of the new violent video games, and incorporating some interesting military data.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Professor am 25. Juni 1998
Format: Taschenbuch
Yes, this book is a powerful indictment of media culture. BUT it also "laments" rather than critiques, longing for a past that was "better" only for white, educated, Christian men! Look out for the minefields of Native American slur jokes, omission of statistics about women (or placement into parentheses of these facts), ignorance of the immigrant experience, and implicit denial of slavery. Postman is so wonderful in some ways, it is deeply sad he is so biased by his white maleness that he boasts of ideal literacy rates in the 1800s while all I can think of is that slaves were forbidden from this pursuit, women weren't educated, and immigrants worked in factories or mines. Only white men can truly be enthralled with such a book, and that is sad, because it is so politically perceptive and powerful in its attack on media otherwise. Don't say things were better in the past, just say things have always been oppressive (literacy was also about the oppression of the oral culture of the Native peoples whose country this was first!) and the argument will be much less foolish in the early chapters.
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