ArtsJournal: Arts, Culture, Ideas

IDEAS

Why Cities Won’t Be Done In By COVID

Despite the long tradition of anti-urbanism in the U.S. that always seems to see the demise of cities just around the corner, they will survive because they are one of humanity’s greatest inventions. - The Conversation

How Social Media Has Rewired Our Cultural/Political Discourse

This expanding cornucopia of tech and entertainment has served as a compensatory narrative of progress and advancement for an empire in decline. The future seems more and more constrained, materially, but, on the flip side, you are freer and freer to build your own virtual worlds and get lost in them. - Artnet

The Theatre Of Dreams

We are neurochemically predisposed to find our dreams meaningful, which may suggest that they do have a pedagogical function. Even the common advice to make an important decision only after you “sleep on it” might be worth revising, to “dream on it.” The fact that dreams often generate powerful emotions and deploy narrative structures further strengthens the notion that...

Could Amsterdam’s Radical Effort To Transform Itself Leave Capitalism Behind?

In April 2020, during the first wave of COVID-19, Amsterdam’s city government announced it would recover from the crisis, and avoid future ones, by embracing the theory of “doughnut economics.” - Time

The Psychology Of Massive Multiplayer Online Games and The QAnon Delusions

"The art of creating the connections and building communities of others who also come to believe and amplify them is a virtuous circle that keeps growing and strengthening increasingly wacky beliefs." - Post Alley

A Checklist For Happiness? It Doesn’t Work That Way

"Every cultural message we get is that happiness can be read off a scorecard of money, education, experiences, relationships, and prestige. Want the happiest life? Check the boxes of success and adventure, and do it as early as possible! Then move on to the next set of boxes. She who dies with the most checked boxes wins, right? Wrong....

Here’s What The New American Elite Looks Like

"From the American Revolution until the late 20th century, the American elite was divided among regional oligarchies. It is only in the last generation that these regional patriciates have been absorbed into a single, increasingly homogeneous national oligarchy, with the same accent, manners, values, and educational backgrounds from Boston to Austin and San Francisco to New York and Atlanta....

Can Virtual Reality Deliver The Benefits Of Nature?

It's an urgent question for many in lockdown - and in the UK, "whether we are in lockdown or not, four fifths of the UK population lives in an urban environment and one in eight homes do not have a garden."- BBC

The Backstage Details Of That Pandemic Inauguration Gala Spectacular

The producer of the Celebrating America gala had to be very cautious, and very (very) flexible: "Our plans were carved in Jello. Everything was moldable. In a way, it makes it tenfold harder, but in a way it’s a little freeing because you’re not stuck into shoehorning into the things that exist. The pandemic also caused us to figure...

Why Love Work? It Doesn’t Love You Back

Over the past few decades, this ethos of cheerless duty has been overtaken by the imperative to love your work. Graduation speakers, human resources departments, and motivational memes keep telling us we ought to merge passion with profession. But work remains stubbornly unlovable. Especially for workers in the United States, the hours are long, wages have not remotely kept...

Why Conspiracy Theories Are So Attractive

Are conspiracy theories truly more prevalent and influential today, or does it just seem that way? - NiemanLab

The Power Of Jigsaw Puzzles To Put The World Back Together

If maps are representations of a larger reality, then jigsaws are maps too. Indeed, they began life this way, as ‘dissected maps’. Invented by the British cartographer John Spilsbury in the 1760s, the earliest puzzles were designed to make geography lessons more fun for schoolchildren and, no doubt, inculcate them early into the cult of empire. - Psyche

The Culture Of Nothing?

For years, an aesthetic mode of nothingness has been ascendant — a literally nihilistic attitude visible in all realms of culture, one intent on the destruction of extraneity in all its forms, up to and including noise, decoration, possessions, identities and face-to-face interaction. Over the past decade, American consumers have glamorized the pursuit of expensive nothing in the form...

Unhappiness As A Political Act

The focus of the "medicalization of unhappiness" debate was whether unhappiness should be considered a scientific problem. That issue has given way to the "politicization of unhappiness." Whatever unhappiness Americans feel in their private lives has spilled over into the public realm, with ramifications far beyond whether people who take drugs to feel happy should be doing so. -...

The Different Flavors Of Change

The paradox of change is that while it impacts us on a very subjective, personal level and each of us perceives it very differently, on another level it also unites us because of its universal aspects, aspects that can help us define our common humanity. - 3 Quarks Daily

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