Read e-book online Consider the Lobster and Other Essays PDF

By David Foster Wallace

ISBN-10: 0316013323

ISBN-13: 9780316013321

Do lobsters suppose ache? Did Franz Kafka have a humorous bone? what's John Updike's deal, besides? And what occurs whilst grownup video starlets meet their enthusiasts in individual? David Foster Wallace solutions those questions and extra in essays which are additionally captivating narrative adventures. even if protecting the three-ring circus of a vicious presidential race, plunging into the wars among dictionary writers, or confronting the World's greatest Lobster Cooker on the annual Maine Lobster competition, Wallace tasks a high quality of proposal that's uniquely his and a voice as robust and specific as any in American letters.

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Yet what of material culture and technological interchange? We tend to overlook that the exchange is always two-way, without denying that something in the exchange is not equal. The Spanish horse and later the rifle, completely changed the life-styles of plains Indians— in fact the romantic image of the roving hunters and migratory peoples which inhabit our imaginations were already postexchange social pat­ terns. Similarly at the level of material culture, who are the Irish without the potato, the Italians without the tomato, the New Englander without corn, or the world without tobacco?

3. Similar praxes may utilize different technologies and remain parallel. The resistance to adapt multihulls by Westerners and the coun- 41 TECHNOLOGY AS CULTURAL INSTRUMENT terpart resistance to monohulls by Pacific Islanders illustrate this phe­ nomenon. Only by changing the context, the cultural trajectory itself, would adaptation occur. What these variants show—at the social-cultural level—is that just as at the individual level technologies must be understood as humantechnology pairings, so must they be conceived at the social-cultural level.

Of course, one might ar- 26 POSTMODERNITY AND TECHNOCULTURE gue—and this argument has often enough been made—that what differs was the rapacious and hungry culture that Europe had become and within which Columbus's voyages must be located. 8 Thus, the Hindu prayer wheel, adapted, became the windmill that drained the marshes and claimed lowlands of Holland. The stirrup adapted from ancient Mongol designs became the platform for the early form of a battle "tank," the mounted knight with horse powered lance for forward thrust.

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Consider the Lobster and Other Essays by David Foster Wallace


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