Cultural infrastructure

We don’t actually want the object itself.

What we really want is to be like the person we admire who happens to be associated with that object. The object is just a means to be more like the person we admire.

That’s the cultural infrastructure of advertising and designing and communications and everything in between.

Even politics.

The medium is the messenger

What sets humans apart from other species is our ability to learn by observing and imitating others.

We watch and imitate what other people desire. Especially people we admire. They are the mediums of our desires.

The medium is not the message.

The medium is the messenger.

Personal identity

The problem of personal identity is often found in good drama.

It’s an excellent theme to play with. Who does the hero think they are? Why can’t they see who they really are? What’s their Achilles heel?

Making them unsure of who they are is a good (albeit unsteady) first step towards their transformation. Or lack thereof if the drama is to be a tragedy.

Seeding elements of the antagonist into the identity of the protagonist is a fine way to internalize the drama, to embody the friction.  

Pitting the hero against themselves is a fine way to incorporate the drama.

Put their plight in their own hands. 

René Girard

We watch and learn by imitating others.

And the most important thing we learn from others is desire.

We desire what others desire because we imitate their desires.

Think freely

Why limit our thinking to our domain of expertise?

Why hold back our thinking to what we think we know is true?

We are on the cusp of a new world. Whatever has got us to this point won’t get us to the next point.

We need to shake up our thinking from one disciple into another. Not a simple shift of associated skills and sectors but wholesale upending of beliefs and expectations.

How else can we ever create anything new?

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