The effects of technology on society is somewhat viewed as negative. With great emphasis on digital devices, social communications is greatly affected. The notion that instead of buying books, one can actually download the text from the Internet. The invention of “Kindle” will change the production of books in the near future. “Kindle” is a thin, lightweight, electronic reading device that can be taken anywhere with the ability to download books, newspapers, magazines, etc. It was created by Amazon.com. Ray Bradbury’s book Fahrenheit 451 has certainly foreshadowed this inventive way of reading because it in fact demolishes the actual book itself. The idea of “burning books” correlates to today’s notion of not buying books at all. “Do you know why books such as this are so important? Because they have quality. And what does the word quality mean? To me it means texture. This book has pores” (Bradbury). The importance of books is explicated, buy convey that books offer meaning, meaning to life. The same meaning can be included in existing media like television and radio, but people no longer demand it. The details of life are in fact authentic experiences. The invention of technology takes away a part of these experiences. Banning books in Bradbury’s world is equivalent to what eBooks and Kindle offer to society. These inventions have certainly brought new ways for which teaching and communication is practiced. Teachers will be downloading books for their students as opposed to asking them to physically buy the books. But one needs to question whether or not eBooks and Kindle offer the same quality. Although the knowledge is still the same, the meaning of reading an actual book has changed. Unknowingly to Bradbury, his book Fahrenheit 451 somewhat foreshadowed the digital world and the advancement of such technological feats. How ironic that books can possibly cease to exist in the near future due to the invention of Kindle and eBooks.
The invention of technology used to make film production greatly affects the translation of novels to film. Movies and Film are definitely limited to fully express a novel and book. The same limitations are set with books and by the inability to fully illustrate imagery. Technology affects original ideas and theories of authors. The directors translation is trying to imitate but cannot fully duplicate the author’s thoughts because of the limitations of language and visuals. Technology can only do so much to offer knowledge. But to some extent, Francois Truffaut is able to capture and illustrate what Bradbury is ultimately trying to convey. In the movie, the scene that seems to capture the true essence of Bradbury’s theme is in fact the parlor scene. During this scene, the audience is able to see exactly how lack of thinking and thought will be taken over by technology. Mildred believes that her involvement in the decision- making is vital when really they are merely talking about seating arrangements. The scene encompasses Bradbury’s idea that technology will hinder social consciousness. Books are no longer used for thought and imagination and technology merely manipulates society into thinking that it takes thought to utilize. Bradbury’s ideas are addressed and fully illustrated by Francois Truffaut’s adaptation of the book. This is a rarity when novels are made into film.
“Some critics have discerned in these generative practices only a
continuation of the modern tendency to contest, attack, destroy such traditional fictional concerns as thematic causality, linear chronology, justified narrative viewpoint, and the life, thus working at the aesthetic level. Postmodern critics prefer to view the situation differently; for them, generative structures isolate and protect the work of art and by referring always back into the text (verbal or visual), enable the novel or film to exist independently, aside from ideology or sociological issues” (Morrissette).
Translation of novel to film generates many questions at to the extent in which the film can do the novel any justice. The film is able to illustrate the setting, time, and background of the novel but it is within certain situations where the novel can only fully explain a theory or idea through language. Technology somewhat hindered this ability for actual books. Film and movies can only offer a visual translation and though rare at times can fully image an author’s theory and ideas.
Of the greatest technological inventions, the greatest above all is the Internet. The Internet has heavily affected modern life and the digital world. There are few who disagree with the notion that these digital devices do more harm than good. This point of view sides with the notion that the Internet and its online social networks increase social life in the physical world as well as in the digital world.
“People who most relied on these communication tools had a larger and more diverse group of close friends and family members… Internet use didn’t replace involvement in local activities-net users and Facebook fans are just as likely as anyone else to visit neighbors in person. In, fact bloggers and cell users are more likely to belong to local organizations like youth groups and charities” (Szalavitz).
The article is ultimately saying that the more involved one is with online social networks the more involved they are with their physical community. It is perceived that these online communities that enable people to stay connected promote a healthier view towards life in general; the happier and more aware they are of themselves and others around them. Online social networks were somewhat foreshadowed in Ray Bradbury’s novel and Francois Truffaut’s film with the presentation of the parlor scene. The idea of being able to talk directly to people through a device from the comfort of home or wherever one may be is a technological feat. This idea opened the door for exploration of making this an actual possibility. The invention of the computer and the Internet enables these ventures to become true. Online social networks can either be viewed as negative or positive. These affects on social consciousness can also be seen in education. Online classes offered at many colleges and universities.
“Researchers suggests that online courses are not suitable for all types of
students and faculty. Students and teachers react to new educational technologies with varied emotions, ranging from enthusiasm to disabling fear. The text-based computer-mediated communication that is used by Internet-based e-learning systems for discussion board email discourse is a powerful tool for group communication and cooperative learning that promotes a level of reflective interaction that is often lacking in a face-to-face, teacher-centered classroom. However, the reduced non-verbal social cues, such as the absence of facial expressions and voice inflections, can generate misunderstandings that adversely affect learning” (Rovai).
This explanation of online courses does in fact convey the affects on its problems with technology replacing the classroom. Students who still need a teacher’s presence would receive technology in the classroom better. Technology can only do some much whereas the teacher and instructor can offer a full education towards the subject.
Technology can also take a toll on the political aspect of everyday life. Technological advances make it possible for media as well as the Internet to shape public opinion on political matters. Technology such as digital communication is democratizing American culture. The idea of democratizing is the notion that that Internet holds and displays many opinions on anything and everything. The Internet is not regulated whatsoever thus enabling anyone to speak their mind, convey their thoughts, and forward their creativity through technology. The availability of these thoughts and the ways by which one can come across it has become less of a struggle for discovery. The Internet and online social networks take on the responsibility of conveying to Americans what is fashionable and what is not.
“The channels for communicating have mushroomed in recent years; society is quickly adapting and finding new ways to use these channels to get their voice heard, to socialize, to interact, build relationships and to learn. This creates the desire to plug in, to be connected to the stream of information constantly, creating the behaviour described as ‘continuous partial attention.’ The rules of engagement have changed we no longer have top down communications but we are witnessing the democratizing of communications” (Allen).
Digital devices make it possible for the world, not only America, to connect with each other. A social life can now exist through the computer and not be constricted to physical placement in society. Online social networks are arenas where individuals can display their talents and share their interests. Anyone can post a blog strategically placed in arenas such as these social networks to gain an immediate audience and followers. The easy access by digital devices such as the cell phone enables an infinite amount of information about certain issues on society.
“The concept of media democratization, emphasizing the process, avoids
hypostatizing ‘democracy’ as a fixed and final state of affairs. It also connotes those in other social spheres. Here, it is useful to distinguish between democratization through the media (the use of media, whether by governments or civil society actors, to promote democratic goals and processes elsewhere in society), and democratization of the media themselves” (Carroll).
The Internet is a massive forum for anyone to post a blog or even build a website to push their opinions toward certain issues in politics especially now during this modern age. The Internet is a massive forum for anyone to post a blog or even build a website to push their opinions toward certain issues in politics especially among the generation that has grown up in the digital world.
“The media have also become a crucial arena for shaping the public space and the citizenry itself---crucial, in the sense that although it is not a new phenomenon, it is an intense and substantive one --- due both to the weight they bring to bear on the definition of public agendas and their capacity to establish the legitimacy of certain debates. The predominance of the media is such, with respect to other venues of social mediation --- parties, unions, churches, educational establishments, etc. --- that these can only prevail by continually recurring to the media” (Leon).
Digital communication has somewhat evolved to accommodate the rise of new technology. Digital devices, such as the cell phone, have become the tool for immediate news and updates about certain current events happening in America and around the world. The media and how it presents an already biased opinion on certain issues in society have popularized the effects of such tactics to form public opinion. In a very obvious way, the Internet has become a way by which public opinion can be shaped by the information that is presented. The idea that Internet is now available at the palm of one’s hand has made democratizing communication easier for media to sort of govern the masses.
Certain issues have risen over whether this type of communication is valid or rather constitutionally right. Policy-makers would like to regulate the issue but really how can that be when the Internet is not regulated at all.
“How do the supposed decline of traditional news media such as newspaper, struggles over copyright, the emergence of new ways of communicating online, questions about who owns or controls the Internet, or access to the information we need, relate to social policy concerns such as sustainable development, immigration, environmental degradation, labor rights, gender equity, and other concerns across the America?” (Canadian Journal).
These questions bring on ideas and notions that the Internet must become a sort of political realm to push forward party notions and agendas among the avid Internet users. The media has a heavy role in the participation of molding and shaping public opinion; digital devices have become the tool to forward these biased opinions on the masses.
Modernism certainly embraced technology for the advancement of everyday life. Progress has definitely taken place but the outcome seems to hinder social consciousness. The idea that books have been replaced with mechanics of the Internet has started a literature phenomenon in itself. Ray Bradbury’s book Fahrenheit 451 somewhat foreshadowed the riddance of books. The book what diminished because it was believed to create equality, but Bradbury used that notion to simply convey that technology will in fact take over and that notion did in fact occur. Because technology enabled film production, Francois Truffaut was able to attempt to convey Bradbury’s book and illustrate his theory and ideas. Though never possible to fully imitate or duplicate a novel when translating it to film, Truffaut came close to conveying the theory. Technology reached its pinnacle with the invention of the Internet. The Internet made it possible for social communication to evolve. The Internet and its capabilities made way for online social networks as well as new ways for education. Although the Internet is said to hinder social consciousness, some also say that the Internet does in fact improve society. Politics have also been greatly affected with the invention of the Internet. The Internet is a tool that can shape public opinion and is basically an arena to form political views. The democratization of communication through the Internet holds no regulations, this matter does in fact question certain constitutional rights and the government is very aware of the damage or effectiveness that the Internet can cause on politics.
Allen, Claire. “Style Surfing changing parameters of fashion communication – where have they gone?” Inter-Diciplinary.Net. August 2009. 4 Decemebr 2009.
Bradbury, Ray. Fahrenheit 451. New York: Simon and Schuster. 1967.
Canadian Journal of Communication-Special issue: Communication Policy in the Americas: Why it matters. Young Scholars Network. 26 November 2009.
Carroll, William and Robert A. Hackett. “ Media, Culture & Society Democratic media activism through the lens of social movement theory.” Sage Journals Online. January 1983. 4 December 2009.
Fahrenheit 451. Dir. Francois Truffaut. Perf. Oskar Werner, Julia Christie. 1966
Leon, Osvaldo. “Democratizing communications and the media.” The Panama News Volume 8, Number 2. January-February 2002. 4 December 2009. < http://www.Thepanamanews.com/pn/v_08/issue_02/opinion_03.html>.
Morrissette, Bruce. Novel and Film: essays in two genres. University of Chicago Press, 1985. 48-49.
Rovai, Alfred and Hope M. Jordan. “ Blended Learning and Sense of Community: A comparative analysis with traditional and fully online graduate courses.” International Review of Research in Open Distance Learning. Regent University, USA, 2004. < http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/viewFile/192/795>.
Szalavitz, Maia. “Internet Net Plus for Social Life, Doesn’t Increase Isolation.” 5 Nov.2009. 14 November 2009.