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Book 2 Lesson 6 Disappearing Through the Skylight.

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1 Book 2 Lesson 6 Disappearing Through the Skylight

2 Disappearing Through the Skylight Disappearing Through the Skylight: ----Culture and Technology in the Twentieth Century. Everything we used to know as "the real world " is disappearing. That is the thesis of Disappearing Through the Skylight, a cross- disciplinary examination of something more fundamental than future shock.

3 What is disappearing? Nature is disappearing History is disappearing even the solid things, such as banks, are disappearing. “ the real world ” is disappearing

4 Disappearance or universalization or virtualization The identities of all those born into culture are changing, universalizing, hence disappearing(metaphorically) Nature: In 19 th century: science presented nature as a group of objects set comfortably and solidly in the middle distance before the eyes of the beholders In 20 th century, nature has become a set of geometric and mathematical relations that lie under the surface of the visible. We can imitate it in mathematics A logical conclusion: As surely as nature is being swallowed up by the mind, the banks, you might say, are disappearing through their own skylights

5 Four concepts proposed The real world is disappearing The universalizing tendency of science and technology: there is only one thermodynamics, generics, and so on If man creates machines, machines in turn shape their creators: the modern man is no longer a unique individual, the product of a special environment and culture The disappearance of history is a form of liberation and this feeling of liberation is often expressed through play

6 Osborne Bennet Hardison Jr educated at the University of North Carolina and the University of Wisconsin. He has taught at Princeton and the University of North Carolina. He is the author of Lyrics and Elegies (1958), The Enduring Monument (1962), English Literary Criticism: The Renaissance (1964), Toward Freedom and Dignity: The Humanities and the Idea of Humanity (1973), Entering the Maze: Identity and Change in Modern Culture (1981) Disappearing Through the Skylight (1980).

7 Scientific writing--characteristics 1) Limit the use of technical terms 2) Examples--- to make the writing more vivid and appealing to the readers 3) Figures of speech-- to make the sentences figurative so that the readers can easily understand and associate them with what they are familiar with 4) Objective: relying on facts, not involve emotion, seldom use figures of speech, exclamation. 5) Use the present tense and passive voice. 6) Sentences: Complete sentences, Long sentences

8 Language features 1) Exhibiting certain features of scientific English a) Scientific and technical terms b) Short sentences/ simple present tense 2) The use of figurative language to reach a wider audience. Metaphors, analogies, rhetorical questions, repetition and balanced structure 3) Clear, concise, objective and logical

9 Discourse analysis Section I (para 1-8) Science is committed to the universals Section II. (Para 9-15) -- Science has shown the insubstantiality of the world 1) The world is not made up of solid material objects that we see with our eyes 2) Beautiful art reflects the inner need of a man’s soul. Modern art does not depict the material objects in nature we see but things that we see in our minds. 3) The disappearance of history frees the mind from traditional concepts. 4) The feeling of liberation is often expressed through play. 5) Modern culture is full of images Section III. (Para 16-19) -- Banks are disappearing.

10 Disappearing Through the Skylight

11 Section I (para 1-8) Science is committed to the universals. The basic concepts of science are understood, accepted and adopted by scientists all over the world. This universalizing effect is reflected in automaking, architectural, dress and musical styles. They all tend to become world styles. The modern man is no longer a unique individual. He becomes a cosmopolitan, a citizen of the world. “If man creates machines, machines in turn shape their creators”.

12 Disappearing Through the Skylight Science is committed to the universal. Science is engaged in the task of making its basic concepts understood and accepted by scientists all over the world. A sign of this is that the more successful a science becomes, the broader the agreement about its basic concept sign, symbol, emblem, badge, mark, token, symptom, note. As science becomes successful, more and more people accept its basic concepts. This proves the universality of science

13 Science is committed to the universal Thermodynamics Thermo: heat –dynam- power: Thermodynamics thermometer, thermos,thermonuclear dynamic, dynamite, aerodynamics, electrodynamics, hydrodynamics, dynamo, adynamic Western generics Only one genetics today Soviet generics

14 Science is committed to the universal Lysenko’s theory: environmental stress can produce genetic mutation Lysenko put forward the theory that environmental stress produces genetic changes and these are transimitted Today Lysenko’s theory is discredited, and there is now only one genetics Discredit (v.): reject as untrue; disbelieve

15 Paragraph 2 As the corollary of science, technology also exhibits the universalizing tendency Corollary (n.): an inference or deduction ; A consequence or result that can be logically drawn from the existence of a set of facts by the exercise of common sense and reason. Technology naturally follows science. It also displays the tendency toward the universalizing This is why the spread of technology makes the world looks ever more homogeneous Homo+gene+ous (adj.): of the same race or kind; similar or identical homo- the same: homophone, homosexual, homonym The spread of technology with its universalizing tendency is what makkes different countries and people look more similar or identical

16 Paragraph 2 Architectual styles, dress styles, musical styles, eating styles— world styles Children…experience it as a sameness rather than a diversity, and because their identities are shaped by this sameness, their sense..diminishes decrease, lessen, reduce, dwindle, abate, diminish, subside Children who grow up in their world feel that countries and people are more or less the same. As their thought and feelings are shaped by the sameness, their sense of differences among cultures and people becomes weak

17 Paragraph 3 The automobile illustrates the point with great clarity A technological innovation like steamlining or all-welded body construction…as an asset Streamline (v.): design or construct with a contour that offers the least resistance in moving through air, water, etc. 把 … 制成流线 型 Asset (n.): anything owned that has exchange value ; a valuable or desirable thing to have Automobile not unique—find basic features with variations

18 Paragraph 4 Ford Motor coming up with the Fiesta—world cars Advertisement: surrounded by flags of all nations Cylinder block—England Carburetor—Ireland Transmission—France Wheels—Belgium

19 Paragraph 5 The Fiesta appears to have sunk without a trace The car model, called Fiesta, seems to have disappeared completely It was the auto+motive equi+valent of the international style The idea of a world car is similar to the idea of having a world style of architecture. As architecture was moving toward a common international styles, it was natural for the automobile to do the same Fiat workers refreshed themselves with Pepsi-Cola Fiat workers refreshed themselves with the American soft drink, Pepsi- Cola ( humorous) In the fullness of time international automakers….. In the fullness of time :at the appropriate or right time ; eventually 在 适当的时候,时机成熟时,终于 I’m sure he’ll tell us what’s bothering him in the fullness of time.

20 Paragraph 6 As in architecture, so is in automaking Today…to tell one from another Today, at a distance of 500 paces, one finds it difficult to see any difference in the various car models that are in the same price range Traits that linked American cars to American history-- disappearing Special features in American cars that displayed the special influence of American history and culture Volkswagen Beetle???

21 Paragraph 7 If man creates machines, machines in turn shape their creators No longer quite an individual, no longer quite the product of a unique geography and culture He moves from… from… But somehow his location never changes No matter where he goes he find familiar surroundings. The shops have the same climate because they are similarly airconditioned, the airport the same facilities, the hotel the same amenities He is a cosmopolitan Cosmopolitan (adj.): common to or representative of all or many parts of the world; not national or local

22 Paragraph 7 The price he pays…traditional sense of the word The disadvantage of being a cosmopolitan is that he loses a home in the old sense of the word The benefit…surrounded by neighbours The benefit of being a cosmopolitan is that he begins to think the old kind of home probably restricts his development and activities

23 Paragraph 8 The universalizing imperative of technology is irresistible Imperative (n.): a binding or compelling rule, duty, requirement, etc. The compelling force of technology to universalize cannot be resisted Barring the catastrophe…the culture Catastrophe (n.): a disastrous end, bringing overthrow or ruin; any great and sudden calamity, disaster or misfortune Excepting a great disaster brought out by a nuclear war, the universalizing power of technology will continue to influence modern culture and the consciousness of people who inhabit that culture

24 Section II. (Para 9-15) Section II. (Para 9-15) -- Science has shown the insubstantiality of the world 1) The world is not made up of solid material objects that we see with our eyes 2) Beautiful art reflects the inner need of a man’s soul. Modern art does not depict the material objects in nature we see but things that we see in our minds. 3) The disappearance of history frees the mind from traditional concepts. 4) The feeling of liberation is often expressed through play. 5) Modern culture is full of images

25 Paragraph 9 This brings us art and history again Onward main thesis put forward: The insubstantiality of the world The disappearance of traditional concepts The disappearance of material objects we used to see with our ordinary eyes. This is specially and clearly reflected in modern art and architecture Reminiscing on the early work of Francis Picabia and Marcel Duchamp, Madame Gabrielle Buffet-Picabia wrote of the discovery of machine aesthetic in Reminisce: think, talk, or write about remembered events or experiences In 1949 artists discovered that machines could also be beautiful

26 Francis Picabia French painter. After working in an impressionist style, Picabia was influenced by Cubism and later was one of the original exponents of Dada in Europe and the United States

27 Marcel Duchamp French painter. Noted for his cubist- futurist painting Nude Descending a Staircase, depicting continuous action with a series of overlapping figures. In 1915 he was a cofounder of Dada group in New York.

28 Dada a movement in art and literature based on deliberate irrationality and negation of traditional artistic values; also the art and literature produced by this movement. A western Europe artistic and literary movement ( ) that sought the discovery of authentic reality through the abolition of traditional culture and aesthetic forms.

29 Paragraph 9 When every artist thought he owed it to himself to turn his back on the Eiffel Tower, as a protest against the architectural blasphemy with which it filled the sky Blasphemy (n.): profane or contemptuous speech, writing.or action concerning God or anything held as divine: any remark or action held to be irreverent or disrespectful When every artist thought it was his duty to show his contempt for and objection to the Eiffel Tower which they considered an irreverent architectural structure

30 Paragraph 9 Rehabilitation (n.): the restoration to reputation, rank, etc. Machines soon generated propositions which evaded all tradition escape, avoid, shun, eschew, evade, elude. Machines soon originated new ideas and problems that could not be handled by the old ways of thinking A mobile, extra human plasticity which was absolutely new Extra: outside the scope or region of; beyond Plasticity (n.): state or quality of being easily shaped or moulded A flexible and pliable quality that was beyond human powers and absolutely new

31 Paragraph 10 Art is, in one definition, simply an effort to name the real world. Art can also be defined as an attempt to give a name to things in the real world Are machines “the real world” or only its surface? Is the real world that is easy to find? Science has shown the insubstantiality of the world

32 Paragraph 10 It has thus underminded an article of faith: the thingliness of things. Undermine (v.): wear away at the base or foundation; injure; weaken People used to firmly believe that the things they saw around them were real solid substances but this has now been thrown into doubt by science It has produced images of orders of reality underlying the thingliness of things orders: category; class Science has produced images of many classes or categories of reality that lie under the objective image of things we see with our eyes

33 Paragraph 10 Are images of cells or of molecules or of galaxies more or less real than images of machines ? Science has also produced images that are pure artifacts. *–fact- do, make : factory, benefactor, manufacture, malefactor, facsimile, factual Artifact (n.): any object made by human work Science has also produced images of an artificial character, images of things that do not exist like the image of self-squared dragons Are images of self-squared dragons more or less real than images of molecules?

34 Paragraph 10 images of self-squared dragons (pure artifacts) < images of cells or of molecules or of galaxies (orders of reality )

35 Paragraph 10 It has produced images of orders of reality underlying the thingliness of things orders: category; class Science has produced images of many classes or categories of reality that lie under the objective image of things we see with our eyes Are images of cells or of molecules or of galaxies more or less real than images of machines ? Science has also produced images that are pure artifacts. *–fact- do, make : factory, benefactor, manufacture, malefactor, facsimile, factual Artifact (n.): any object made by human work Science has also produced images of an artificial character, images of things that do not exist like the image of self-squared dragons

36 Paragraph 10 Are images of self-squared dragons more or less real than images of molecules? images of self-squared dragons (pure artifacts) < images of cells or of molecules or of galaxies (orders of reality )

37 Paragraph 11 The skepticism of modern science about the thingliness of things implies a new appreciation of the humanity of art entirely consistent with Kandinsky’s observation…that beautiful art “springs from inner need, which springs from the soul” Skepticism: doubting attitude *con- together, intensive: *–sist- see consistent with: in keeping with This doubt of science about the thingliness of things means there is now a new evaluation of humanity of art. This evaluation is entirely in keeping with what Kandinsky in his book On the Spiritual in Art says about art. He says that beautiful art reflects the inner need of a man’s soul

38 Paragraph 11 Modern art opens on a world whose reality is not “out there” in nature defined as things seen from a middle distance but “in here” in the soul or the mind a middle distance: the normal distance for the eyes to observe objects, not too far. Modern art does not depict the material objects in nature that we see with our eyes but things that we see in our minds It is a world radially emptied of history because it is a form of perception rather than a content. A form of perception: a world filled with images produced in mind A form of a content: a world filled with material objects The world of nature that modern art reveals no longer contains the material objects we are familiar with instead the world is now filled with images produced by the mind. This has made the world almost empty of history because history has to be associated with the objective existence of material things.

39 Paragraph 12 The disappearance of history is thus a liberation- what Madame Picabia refers to as the discovery of “a mobile extra-human plasticity which is absolutely new” The disappearance of history frees the mind from traditional concepts. It is like the discovery of what Madame Picabia says: a flexible and pliable quality that was beyond human powers and absolutely new In what way does modern art express this feeling of liberation?

40 Paragraph 12 paintingPlayfulness of Picasso and Joan Miro In the way of playfulness poetryThe nonsense of Dada poemThe mock heroics

41 Paragraph 13 Conclusion:The most striking, most serious and most disturbing feature is the playfuness of the modern aesthetic The playfulness of modern art imitates the playfulness of science Game theory Virtual particles Black holes Introducing human growth genes into cows Force students of ethics to reexamine the cannibalism

42 Paragraph 13 By introducing human growth genes into cows, forces students of ethics to reexamine the cannibalism Science, in its playfulness, introduces human growth genes into cows and this forces students of ehtics to redefine cannibalism. Does the eating of such cows with their human genes constitute cannibalism?

43 Paragraph 13 The play in modern aesthetic is not a surprise It is announced in every city in the developed world by the fantastic and playful buildings of postmodernism and neomodernism By the fantastic juxtapositions of architectural styles that typify collage city and urban adhocism juxta- near Collage: an artistic composition made of various materials glued on a picture surface Ad hoc:formed for or concerned with one specific purpose: an ad hoc compensation committee.

44 Paragraph 14-- Modern culture is full of images a) the simple geometric designs of the international styles. b) The fanciful patterns of facadism. c) The playfulness of the theme parks and museum villages

45 Paragraph 14 It displays structures that reflect the straight lines a) It displays the fine artistic streamlining of cars and airplanes. b) It displays oil tankers and bulldozers. c) It displays the complicated designs and structure of Tinkertoy models, geodesic domes and lunar Landers.

46 Paragraph 14 It is abounds in images and sounds and values utterly different from those of the world of natural things seen from a middle distance Modern culture is full of images, sounds and values that are quite different from those of natural things we see in the world around us with our naked eyes

47 Paragraph ) The world is not made up of solid material objects that we see with our eyes. This is the basis of the writer’s central theme of “disappearance”, “insubstantiality of the world”. 2) Beautiful art reflects the inner need of a man’s soul. Modern art does not depict the material objects in nature we see but things that we see in our minds. 3) The disappearance of history frees the mind from traditional concepts. 4) The feeling of liberation is often expressed through play. The playfulness of science has produced game theory and virtual particles, in art it has produced the painting of Picasso and Joan Miro and so on. 5) Modern culture is full of images

48 Paragraph 15 It is a human world, but one that is human in ways no one expected. Modern culture reflects a human world but one in ways quite different from what one expected. The image it reveals is not the worn and battered face that stares from Leonardo’s self-portrait, It is not the image of the self-portrait of Leonardo which looks worn and tired much less the one that stares, blearly and uninspired, every morning from the bathroom Nor is it the image of one’s face in the bathroom mirror in the morning which looks dull and unimpressive These are the face of history These are old faces. They belong to the past.

49 Paragraph 15 It is, rather, the image of an eternally playful and eternally youngthful power that makes order whether order is there or not It is the image of a power that is forever playful and youthful. A power that creates regular and harmonious arragements of things not caring whether such arrangements already exist or not That having made one order is quite capable of putting it aside and creating an entirely different one the way a child might build one structure from a set of blocks and then without malice and purely in the spirit of play demolish it and begin again Having made one set of harmonious arrangements, this power is quite capable putting it aside and creating an entirely different one just as a child playing with his Tinkertoy set might build one structure and then playfully without any evil intention take it apart and build another and yet another


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