“Before the telephone came to Magdaluna, Im Kaleem’s house was bustling at just about any time of day, especially at night, when its windows were brightly lit with three large oil lamps, and the loud voices of the men talking, laughing, and arguing could be heard in the street below—a reassuring, homey sound” Anwar F. Accawi (p. 46). It’s hard to imagine that a single device such as the telephone, albeit a breakthrough in technology, could change not only a person’s day to day life, but an entire village. These men in the village experienced all of the luxuries the village had to offer at no cost, Im Kaleem provided the men with a place to gather for conversation, games, drinks and sexual services. The children used to hang around Ima Kaleem’s courtyard playing games waiting for a call down from some of the men requesting errands in exchange for money. But that all changed once the telephone was installed, most of the men would now sit at Abu Raja’s store, “they were always looking up from their games and drinks and talk to glance at the phone in the corner, as if expecting it to ring any minute and bring news that would change their lives and deliver them from their aimless existence”. (p.46) Exposure to the telephone not only affected the men in the village, but it also affected the women, children and their entire way of life. I get very excited to hear about, read about or experience new technology, and I grew up surrounded by a constant emergence of technology, from pagers and cell phones to the home pc. I remember when we bought our first computer, they were just becoming a common household device, my dad came home from the store and asked me to hold the door open while he trucked in these huge boxes, I had never seen my dad so excited about struggling and sweating while moving things in the house. I had no idea what was in those boxes, but I became curious and excited as my dad opened the boxes and removed all the packaging,...
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