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Culture People Psychology Tech

What does it mean to be me?

Sociologist Erving Goffman believed that all human interaction was a theatrical performance. In his most famous book The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life , Goffman called his analysis the study of  “Dramaturgy.”

Dramaturgical analysis is the idea that we present an edited version of our selves when we meet others in person.

All the internet’s a stage

The internet, of course, adds a new layer of complexity to Goffman’s perspective. If social media is edited real life, then our dramaturgical action is the physical extension of it. We are no less authentic online than we are in person.

Goffman’s theory builds on American sociologist Charles Cooley’s ‘The Looking Glass Self’ theory. In 1902, he contextualized the individual:

“I imagine your mind, and especially what your mind thinks about my mind, and what your mind thinks about what my mind thinks about your mind.”

Keep in mind that people didn’t even think of themselves as individuals before the spread of mirrors in the 15th century.

We juggle identities online and off but each of us has a fixed character. It is our friends and family members and Google that know our truest self.

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Categories
Life & Philosophy Psychology

A museum of self

The Metropolitan Museum only showcases ten percent of its owned pieces at any given time. The rest of the art is stored somewhere else waiting to be picked and featured.

“A physical museum is itself a sort of data set — an aggregation of the micro in order to glimpse the macro.”

We all have a surfeit inventory of things we’d like to show: our talents, our Instagram and SnapChat selfies, our love for others. But they can’t all be on display at once.

Like a museum, we have to curate our display while also growing our collection.

The timing, packaging, and place for revealing of our greatest attributes and emotions are stories of their own.

Like art pieces in a gallery, personalities also require curation. It’s impossible to show all your cards at once — pick a few from the archive and make the storytelling as compelling as possible.

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People Tech

RIP Evelyn Berezin, creator of the first word processor

RIP Evelyn Berezin, creator of the first word processor #tech

We take the word processor for granted but fifty years ago it didn’t even exist. That is, until Evelyn Berezin came along and produced the first standalone word processing machine. She previously had made the world’s first bank and airline system software.

She called her machine the Data Secretary, thinking that the new technology would eradicate the role of the human secretary.

The machine itself stood 40 inches high and contained thirteen semiconductor chips that Berezin patented. Unlike machines of past this one could delete, cut, copy, and paste — features we find ubiquitous today.

Berezin thrived in a man’s world, crushing all stereotypes that came her way. She felt compelled to lead the way in computer technology. Author and blogger Gwyn Headley sums it up perfectly:

“Without Ms. Berezin, there would be no Bill Gates, no Steve Jobs, no internet, no word processors, no spreadsheets; nothing that remotely connects business with the 21st century.”

Her influence is profound. One to remember.

Photo by Barton Silverman/New York Times

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Video

People pot pie 😝

This video of human face pies is a nightmare. The teeth and pies with hair may be the scariest of the lot, while the fact that you can get these customized is haunting.

I know we are still 3 months away from Halloween so apologies in advance.

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Arts People Uncategorized

‘To me, a painter, if not the most useful, is the least harmful member of our society’

man ray quote.png

“To me, a painter, if not the most useful, is the least harmful member of our society.”

Man RaySelf-Portrait

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Arts People Video

Go inside the apartment of graphic communicator George Lois

Renowned graphic communicator George Lois takes us on a tour of his apartment. Located in Greenwich Village, what he calls “the best part of Manhattan,” the apartment is full of art. Even the chairs.

[clickToTweet tweet=”‘I have chairs all over the house that I don’t let anybody sit in. ‘Don’t sit in that chair!’ But it’s a chair. No, it’s not. It’s a work of art.”” quote=”‘I have chairs all over the house that I don’t let anybody sit in. ‘Don’t sit in that chair!’ But it’s a chair. No, it’s not. It’s a work of art.””]

Lois may be most recognized for creating the iconic “I Want My MTV” slogan. But he also designed 92 Esquire covers. He also spearheaded the 1960s Creative Revolution that shaped modern day advertising. Some even think he inspired the attitude of irreverence in Don Draper from Mad Men.

Take it from George Lois: “You have to have the good eye.” There is no doubt the man had a knack for aesthetics.

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