Sunday, October 21, 2018

Tracking the decline …

… Not Our Kind: The Problem of Book Reviewing Through Tribal Identification(Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

I love this story—you should love this story—because it's a jewel, a perfect diamond, catching in its facets and unifying into a single brilliancy the light of many apparently different fires in our current cultural disputes. One thing the story shows, for example, is that we have no clear way back, no sufficiently defined penance, for those subjected to public shunning. Another aspect is the mimetic power, the increasing competition for outrage, that our Internet connections fuel—as though the Web had become a laboratory for testing René Girard's theories of social contagion.

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