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Bibliogrphy by Priscilla Leung

Page history last edited by Priscilla Leung 7 years ago Saved with comment

 

 

 1. Brown, Adam, and Tony Chalkley. "'Beautiful, Unethical, Dangerous': Screening Surveillance

and Maintaining Insecurities."Reconstruction: Studies in Contemporary Culture 12.3 (2012)ProQuest. Web. 4 Nov. 2013.

 

This critical essay by Adam Brown and Tony Chalkey outlines the growing theme of a virtual “surveillanscape” in films such as The Dark Knight, The Hunger Games, and Wasted on the Young among many others. While examining how the audience within the film itself is implicated in acts of surveillance, this essay also offers how film might “position audiences of the film to question their complicity in the rhetorics of surveillance . . . giv[ing] way to further violent endeavors screened for the viewer’s entertainment” (11). This notion is problematically downplayed in The Hunger Games where surveillance—and the audience’s moral ambivalence of it—is assuaged as they begin to empathize with the character of Katniss. Hence, Collin’s construction of Katniss “succeeds in protecting her (and the film’s viewers) from facing more devastating implications of her actions” (18). Meanwhile, the topos of technological surveillance in Wasted on the Young ostensibly blurs the boundaries between the public and private self as surveillance includes students using camera phones to record the rape of Xanderie. Thus, Brown and Chalkey argue that within this social media state lies “This morally problematic scenario [that] reinforces the theme of complicity at the core of the film” (21). Ultimately, film presents a space which allows audiences to experience and explore voyeurism in their own engagement with the film. Though many feature films such as The Hunger Games attempt to negotiate surveillance as a “necessary evil”, there also exists other movies, though unpopular, which expose this tension of surveillance and its complexity. In short, this piece offers a diverse range of how surveillance is imposed and reveals the contradictions that lie within these feature films. This piece critically discusses culture technology and effectively highlights the necessity to establish new paradigms for privacy in a world where people “demonstrate a constant pressure (and desire) to be watched and idolized” (23)

 

 


2. Cauter, Lieven de, The Capsular Civilization : on the city in the age of fear /  Rotterdam:

NAi Publishers; New York: Available in North, South and Central America through D.A.P./Distributed Art Publishers, c2004. 

 

Liven De Cauter’s The Capsular Civilization documents the globalization of humanity and deals with its effects on those who are influenced by this idea of “transcendental capitalism”. Cauter claims that despite the binary structure of capitalism, transcendental capitalism holds a resistance that allows for a growing inequality between the center and the periphery. An item representing transcendental capitalism is characterized as generic and “is not an individual in itself, but an example of a corporate identity, of its brand, its kind” (Cauter 43). Moreover, Cauter goes on in his chapter “Geology of the New Fear” to describe how fears are manifested by reflecting on demographic fear, dromophobia, economic fear, xenophobia, agoraphobia, and fear of terrorism. In this era of technological change, Cauter contests that our social technophilia may be attributed to an internalized and “latent fear of being left in the wake of acceleration” (119). Similarly, growing economic prosperity pressures the human race to fear for monetary loss and obsess over job security and health coverage. Cauter also notes that the fear is exploited in a post-9/11 landscape, where politicians have reestablished America’s Defenses “to prevent the emergence of a competing superpower and to wage a pre-emptive war against any power seen as a threat to American interests” (122). Thus, Cauter’s evaluation is a valuable one he deconstructs these fears and urges the collective audience to reflect and move on. As a result, this essay thoroughly and logically depicts the many issues facing the modern man in a growing world afflicted by generic division.

 

 


3. Menne, Jeff. "'I Live in this World, Too': Octavia Butler and the State of Realism." MFS:

Modern Fiction Studies 57.4 (2011): 715-37. ProQuest. Web. 5 Nov. 2013.

 

In his article, Menn Jeff expresses his thoughts on the representation of realism and its connection to the utopian and science fiction (SF) genre. He uses the example of the purported realist documentary Food Inc. to make his claim, stating how “the film depicts the utopian enclave of Joel Salatin’s Polyface Farm” where Joel’s “personable tones contrasts with the refrain we hear throughout that [from] the large corporations (717). Hence, this juxtaposition of utopian and dystopian may be connected to Atwood’s Oryx and Crake, which ends positively and with the literary style connected to SF. Menne goes on to trace Octavia Butler’s realism to that of a utopian landscape makes "the LA Civil Unrest not simply the brutality found in the folds of nature, but the harbinger of historical possibility” (721). Additionally, he historicizes utopia and cites its popularity in the nineteenth century; Menne notes its major revival in the 1960s and 1970s and mentions how other scholars have attributed its end in the 1980s to the reign of neoliberalism. Moreover, Menne offers a unique view of Butler and her desire to associate and “root utopian vision in material conditions” as “the will to construct social life . . . is the true utopian project” (722-3). This piece is holds special value in its idea of the realism and authority that lies in the genre of SF. Menne highlights the importance of this medium as a platform “with an outlook on historical time as mutable, plastic, and open to society’s review (730).  

 

 


4. 

Timeplot. Simile Widgets, n.d. Web. 4 Nov. 2013. <http://www.simile-widgets.org/exhibit/>.

 

SIMILE Widgets is an online platform development which provides users with free tools to visualize smaller or larger collections of data. Authored by Stefano Mazzocchi, the Timeplot tool is a widget where data may be plotted over a time series along with an overlay of important events. It is DHTML-based and utilizes open source software. The website contains a few displays of aggregate data that has been compiled and organized in live examples, some of which include Energy Prices in the U.S. since 1975, the Housing vs. Stock Market in the U.S. since 1975, and Immigration in the U.S. since 1820. This program may serve as useful visualization for relationships in trends, comparative data, and individual values. Specific dates are indicated in linear progression with each value presented in a clean, visually friendly manner. The structure of the Timeplot contains: Event Plot, Plot 1, Plot 2, and Timeplot. Additionally, SIMILE Widgets provides tutorials for “How to Create Timeplots” as a guide for the user to create a basic timeplot using an HTML editor. Plot colors may be controlled and additional plots may be added as an overlapping layer. All in all, Timeplot is a versatile and interactive visual tool that possesses the functionality of event overlay and multi-layer plots. Its ability to present vast amounts of data is an essential characteristic that highlights its practical use.

 

 


5. Toker, Leona, and Daniel Chertoff. "Reader Response and the Recycling of Topoi in Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go."Partial Answers: Journal of Literature and the History of Ideas 6.1 (2008): 163-80. MLA International Bibliography. Web. 4 Nov. 2013.

 

Written by Toker and Chertoff, this article explores the topos of the dystopian genre while touching upon Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World and George Orwell’s 1984. Toker and Chertoff highlight the deceptiveness of language existing in all three novels—criticizing the panoply of euphemistic language as “obligatory organ harvestings are referred to as ‘donations,’ as if they were voluntary . . .” (164). In effect, this “propaganda and marketing” is institutionalized to the detriment of the novel’s characters. Interestingly, this article attributes the refusal of the students’ ability to flee to their reluctance in rebelling against their established norms and lives. As a result, the article goes to analyze the deprivation of free action as exemplified in the students’ lack of privacy as part of the Dystopian phenomenon. In effect, this work evokes an unsettling sense of unfairness due to the manipulations of the social institution. This motif of watchfulness is further discussed later on, where Toker and Chertoff state:

Another suspense-promoting technique is the use of the surveillance topos, mandatory in dystopian literature. Hailsham, the almost perfect school which other "donors" admire, is not free from at least some features of an alienating environment: it is a panopticon where the students are under constant surveillance; they are, moreover, themselves maneuvered into complicity with surveillance. Real privacy for talking about subjects perceived as dangerous is only possible when the conversation is hidden in plain view . . .” (Toker and Certoff 169)

Considering the minimal privacy Hailsham students are given, this quote ultimately displays the pressures to practice ostensibly generic behaviors. However in extension, this misguided source of behavior is one that is manipulated upon students to monitor their own peers; this concurrently has led students to often monitor each other in the presence of basic conversational speech. This stifling of conversational freedom visibly leads to a climate where neither Kathy nor her peers feel comfortable discussing precarious issues. Hence, this piece is significant in its commentary of watching and being watched as a way of highlights a discomforting and pervasive oppression. Likewise, it becomes transparent to readers how difficult it is to discuss taboo topics in confidence. Overall, this essay effectually delineates the novel’s method of controlling and obfuscating taboo information as a way used to suppress provoking issues and stimulating thought. 

 

 

 

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