Naked Crowd Essay

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Emily Marshall
English 10
Daniel Frank
10 March 2013
Nakedness

“Why is it that American anxiety about identity has led us to value exposure over privacy? Why, in short, are we so eager to become members of the Naked Crowd, in which we have the illusion of belonging only when we are exposed?” Jeffrey Rosen wrote in, “The Naked Crowd”, about something that probably 85% of the United Sates was guilty of. He got intimate with us. He brought down the guard of our computer screens and iPhones. He makes us exposed by our exposure on the Internet. Rosen wonders, just like myself, why people use the Internet to share their darkest secrets? Why are people so open online? Jeffrey Rosen opens up the doors trying to expose these people. To him it seems as if Americans are so obsessed with putting themselves out there for people to see and he is trying to figure out why that is such a big deal to all of us. Why, we as a society are so interested in the way others view us and if we are not open enough, people will not accept us.

Rosen’s passage proves to his audience how greedy and prideful our society was raised up to be. He kept bring up the fact of how people are so obsessed with their image in others eyes and that if they don’t share their whole hearts with strangers then they can’t be trusted. He says that we are at an “age of individualism rather then individuality”. Saying that we are more worried about being an important individual then being ourselves and not caring what others thinks. “…Will feel pressure to parcel out bits of personal information in order to allow unseen strangers to experience a sense a vicarious identification” (Rosen). I understand why Rosen puts this sentence into his article because there is that constant pressure to be open to the public on the Internet. Our society is a society of takers, not givers I feel like. And through this, we are always asking for more and more. Jeffrey Rosen also talks about September 11th and stated that portraits of Grief was one way for many people to morn the loss of their loved ones.  He states that these portraits were intended to show the personal lives of a diverse range of people.  He says that they were representing individuals rather than a large group of people, going back to his statement, an “age of individualism rather then individuality”.  The portraits were made to be a form of therapy for families that had lost loved ones; instead they came across as these families seeking attention of the American public. By using these portraits to start, Rosen makes his reader start to think where he is going with his passage. He forces them to make assumption in their minds as to why he started with that. What is the point? Later, Rosen goes into talking about how people like to show and tell their deepest secrets so they can be trusted. It seems to Rosen that if people put their personal information on the Internet, society will tend to be trustful of them.  He says on page 479 that "The Internet, however, is complicating our ability to negotiate the boundary between public and private, making it hard to recover a private self that has been voluntarily exposed." What he means by this is the Internet is a way for people to expose their everyday lives. For example, Twitter, Facebook, people can instantly know where you are, what you are doing, and whom you are with because of that one simple post. By posting, we as a society are conforming into each other. We may be from different countries, eat different foods, talk different languages, but we are all coming together and joining nationwide Internet sites to join the “Naked Crowd”. When reading “The Naked Crowd” by Jeffery Rosen, I always thought “So What?” Such as, in the very beginning of Rosen’s article he mentions and touches on 9/11. Starting out your article with something as dramatic and painful as that makes you wonder, why he did that. Then he adds to why she brought that up. I think what Rosen’s “so...
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