Reading in the future: literacy and the time of the internet

University of Maryland
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Reconstruction: Studies in contemporary culture, 2005, 5 (2), pp. 1 - 13
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David R. Coles Reading in the Future: Literacy and the Time of the Internet locates the literacies of the internet itself read as the end game of western technology or the Machina Mundi, the Great Chain of the World that has a centre that is everywhere and a circumference that is nowhere in a contradictory space. But Cole also self-consciously locates his own writing at a moment in time when the initial technological hype of the internet is subsiding in the face of the boredom of informational overload and the internet is emerging as both an unlimited realm of resource and the site of a brand of western nihilism containing a sense of relativism, collapse of meaning and cultural schizo-cynicism. Remarkably, in the course of his argument, Coles does not appropriate the internet, does not simplify it according to his own vision of its potential or mission but allows it to remain a place of cultural schizophrenia, to be navigated only by means of the corresponding learning, acceptance, and practice of schizo literacy.
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