Mar
21
to Mar 25

Paper at Pop Culture Assoc. 2016 Conference, Seattle

AMBITION, MADNESS, AND SOCIAL CLIMBING IN FILTH AND MACBETH

Can horrific ethical choices catapult one into a descent into madness? Can the psychological consequences of actions born solely of greed and ambition create a state of insanity? Two recent popular film adaptations of literary works provide opportunities to examine these questions: Filth (2013), starring James McAvoy, based on the novel by Irvine Welsh; and Macbeth (2015), starring Michael Fassbender, from Shakespeare’s play. Both protagonists engage in secret violence to manipulate career promotions, a literary device that kicks off their descents into madness. They pursue their greed and ambition, following a downward path into an underworld of hallucinations, delusions of grandeur, and underlying guilt. The resulting fracturing of their psyches brings forth imaginary dopplegangers that manifest as an alter ego and ghost, respectively. Each character’s death severs his tie with his projected double; in fact, in both deaths, a physical severing of the head from the body occurs that throws into relief their final separation from their delusions.  

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Apr
3
3:00pm 3:00pm

Paper at Pop Culture Assoc./American Culture Assoc. Conference

CRAZY MIX-EM-UPS

THE USER-GENERATED INTERNET’S INFLUENCE ON EXPANDING PERCEPTION

The Internet is one of the largest repositories for popular culture. Users naturally generate recombinant material as one person's idea or image sparks creative connections in others. Similarly, users comment on, repost, retweet, and tag others, creating massive user contributions. This high level of participation in popular culture is unprecedented; studying the effects of Internet participation is important to the disciplines of sociology, communication, cultural studies, cognitive science, and philosophy.

How does Internet user-participation influence the shift from postmodernism into the current age? Specifically, how does the Internet-based practice of recombining information contribute to creative expansion and increased connectivity? How are expectations of information sharing influencing the definitions of plagiarism, intellectual property, and the right to know?

I argue that recombinant practices expand perception to one that is more multi-faceted and prismatic; therefore, emerging beliefs in transparency and open sharing are positive changes for society.

 

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