In Shakespeare’s time, new words were created, giving people new ways of expressing themselves. In 1903, the Wright brothers successfully flew the first working airplane, giving people the possibility to fly. But perhaps our most ingenious inventions are that of the computer and the internet. These now key components to daily life are constantly throwing advertisements at us, ever assessing what our likes and dislikes are, and constantly giving more and more of our “private information” to big corporations. In ‘Feed’, the novel by M.T. Anderson, we are taken a step towards our possible future, where computers have become so integral to our society that they are now implanted in our heads, connected to our brains. This is called the feed. While this seems like a wonderful innovation, Anderson reveals the detriment all this new technology is causing our society. The feed, and inventions like it, are causing the collapse of our culture, the dilution of our language, and the complete destruction of our environment.
Our culture is largely based on the notion of uniqueness. People like to know that there is something that makes them different from everyone else. We see it in the masses of people dyeing, cutting and puncturing themselves to show individuality. However, it seems more and more that what makes us unique becomes commonplace once it is categorized, labeled, and branded by corporations. This is taken to the extreme in ‘Feed’. Everything you buy, or even look at, is taken in by your feed, and creates a customer profile that is sent to corporations to be evaluated. The knowledge is then used to sort you into marketing demographic. “It’s like a spiral: They keep making everything more basic so it will appeal to everyone. And gradually, everyone gets used to everything being basic, so we get less and less varied as people, more simple. So the corps make everything even simpler. And it goes on and on (Pg 97).” This means that because of our supposed...
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