Wednesday, August 19, 2020

How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy

How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention EconomyHow to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy by Jenny Odell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I liked some of the author's examples, but overall, this didn't grab me. One way I can tell is that I stopped highlighting the e-book at about 2/3 of the way through. That means I was skimming from that point on.

And that's too bad because this is a subject near to my heart. To her credit, she did work Bartleby, the Scrivener, into the discussion, which warrants at least a few choice passages, though the other one is a quote from a different work Odell referenced in her opening. 

"Repressive forces don’t stop people expressing themselves but rather force them to express themselves; what a relief to have nothing to say, the right to say nothing, because only then is there a chance of framing the rare, and ever rarer, thing that might be worth saying. —Gilles Deleuze, Negotiations" (7%)

"Herman Melville’s short story, “Bartleby, the Scrivener.” Bartleby, the clerk famous for repeating the phrase, “I would prefer not to,” uses a linguistic strategy to invalidate the requests of his boss. Not only does he not comply; he refuses the terms of the question itself." (35%)

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