Mediación cultural Archive

  • In light of numerous scientific studies, and also as a result of the challenges faced in the area of artificial intelligence, today it is possible to understand and describe in great detail how our brains work. 

According to some current ideological trends, we create our image of reality. However, it is not an unreal, intentionally skewed vision imposed from without, but rather one that has been validated and consolidated by our experiences, created by combining an infinite number of schemas, facts and perceptions that together constitute our mental “puzzle” of the world we live in  –an image filled with distortions, gaps and flaws, true; but even more so with accurate assessments, since otherwise it would be impossible for us to survive–. 

Our brains, furthermore, work in modules, using specific mechanisms,  transforming our perceptions into symbols, and in turn into behaviours. 
This explains why human languages are the way the are, and why literature builds stories the way it does;  as well as why both language and literature really influence us, and we them, with all the advantages and dangers this entails. 

The inevitability of both good and bad uses of human expression and their impact on us, explains why we have a specific mental module, innate, having the mission of detecting lies, traps and falsehoods, since they  threaten making efficient decisions regarding survival.  
Since we have this module, people who lie end up having no credibility, as tends to happen in the media, institutions, civil and cultural authorities, and individuals in a cyclical manner throughout history. 

Later in this article we will discuss in greater detail the fascinating characteristics of brain function which are relevant to linguistic and literary studies; and the clear advantages studying Humanities and Neuroscience (non-ideologically speaking)  provide for our survival.

    THE WAY OUR BRAIN WORKS, AND HUMAN EXPRESSION. Implications for Literature, Media and research

    In light of numerous scientific studies, and also as a result of the challenges faced in the area of artificial intelligence, today it is possible to understand and describe in great detail how our brains work. According to some current ideological trends, we create our image of reality. However, it is not an unreal, intentionally skewed vision imposed from without, but rather one that has been validated and consolidated by our experiences, created by combining an infinite number of schemas, facts and perceptions that together constitute our mental “puzzle” of the world we live in –an image filled with distortions, gaps and flaws, true; but even more so with accurate assessments, since otherwise it would be impossible for us to survive–. Our brains, furthermore, work in modules, using specific mechanisms, transforming our perceptions into symbols, and in turn into behaviours. This explains why human languages are the way the are, and why literature builds stories the way it does; as well as why both language and literature really influence us, and we them, with all the advantages and dangers this entails. The inevitability of both good and bad uses of human expression and their impact on us, explains why we have a specific mental module, innate, having the mission of detecting lies, traps and falsehoods, since they threaten making efficient decisions regarding survival. Since we have this module, people who lie end up having no credibility, as tends to happen in the media, institutions, civil and cultural authorities, and individuals in a cyclical manner throughout history. Later in this article we will discuss in greater detail the fascinating characteristics of brain function which are relevant to linguistic and literary studies; and the clear advantages studying Humanities and Neuroscience (non-ideologically speaking) provide for our survival.

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  • A quick review of recent news from around the world, confirms the 2012 Edelman Barometer's conclusions (25 countries, 30,000 persons surveyed), in regards to the remarkable loss of trust, respect and credibility, experienced by major institutions in the last few years –a crisis deep enough to negatively affect their maneuverability, and to obstruct their proper and efficient operation. 
Let's consider the case of communications media:  A 40% credibility rating in countries like the USA and Europe, where people traditionally <strong>trusted</strong> their primary media companies, amounts to nothing, regardless of whether other institutions are faring worse.

In this article, including both the Edelman Barometer video and the above-mentioned information corroborating its claims, we present our analysis of how trust was lost and can be recovered. …As long as the stakeholders allow the establishment of some limits to agendas --...for their own benefit!
Not doing this would kill the Digital Society in which we have invested so much, before it can even operate to its full potential.

    No transaction without TRUST; no trust without evidence of VALUES –But WHOSE values…?

    A quick review of recent news from around the world, confirms the 2012 Edelman Barometer's conclusions (25 countries, 30,000 persons surveyed), in regards to the remarkable loss of trust, respect and credibility, experienced by major institutions in the last few years –a crisis deep enough to negatively affect their maneuverability, and to obstruct their proper and efficient operation. Let's consider the case of communications media: A 40% credibility rating in countries like the USA and Europe, where people traditionally trusted their primary media companies, amounts to nothing, regardless of whether other institutions are faring worse. In this article, including both the Edelman Barometer video and the above-mentioned information corroborating its claims, we present our analysis of how trust was lost and can be recovered. …As long as the stakeholders allow the establishment of some limits to agendas --...for their own benefit! Not doing this would kill the Digital Society in which we have invested so much, before it can even operate to its full potential.

    Continue Reading...

  • During the last decades, literary and media studies have merged, and enriched themselves with tools originally belonging to other disciplines: Anthropology, Sociology, Psychology, Political Sciences, Musicology, and many others...  
Out of their colaboration, in fact, a new discipline was born ─that of Cultural Studies, which builds upon the seminal idea, * that every cultural product and element, responds to a certain social need, and reflects ─in a certain way, too, our social reality.*

Under this multidisciplinarian umbrella, the careful and experienced analysis of popular fiction ─like that of Pedro Infante's movies in Mexico,  offers us a privileged channel to unveiling and understanding our deeper reality ─our "true reality", as Carlos Bousoño would say.
.
       The present paper illustrates the point, better than a thick volume of theoretical frameworks.

    WHEN EVEN THE MOST COURAGEOUS CRY…

    During the last decades, literary and media studies have merged, and enriched themselves with tools originally belonging to other disciplines: Anthropology, Sociology, Psychology, Political Sciences, Musicology, and many others... Out of their colaboration, in fact, a new discipline was born ─that of Cultural Studies, which builds upon the seminal idea, * that every cultural product and element, responds to a certain social need, and reflects ─in a certain way, too, our social reality.* Under this multidisciplinarian umbrella, the careful and experienced analysis of popular fiction ─like that of Pedro Infante's movies in Mexico, offers us a privileged channel to unveiling and understanding our deeper reality ─our "true reality", as Carlos Bousoño would say. . The present paper illustrates the point, better than a thick volume of theoretical frameworks.

    Continue Reading...

  • In the same way that “no action is without an equal and opposite reaction”, there are no sounds that produce no effects.  
And precisely because they generate things inside of us  –they change us–, sounds are powerful: Just as they make us happy or well, they make us uncomfortable or ill.
That said, what do we know about them?; what are their effects? 
Do we know how to use them, both in our professional lives (for example: as a brand for our product), as well as in our private lives?
Julian Treasure is a professional who creates sounds for marketing and for communications media. And today's talk (the video) –the first of three–, simply and brilliantly introduces us to the world of sounds. Because “hearing better”, is living better...

    THE POWER OF SOUND –…by its effects you shall know it; talk by Julian Treasure

    In the same way that “no action is without an equal and opposite reaction”, there are no sounds that produce no effects. And precisely because they generate things inside of us –they change us–, sounds are powerful: Just as they make us happy or well, they make us uncomfortable or ill. That said, what do we know about them?; what are their effects? Do we know how to use them, both in our professional lives (for example: as a brand for our product), as well as in our private lives? Julian Treasure is a professional who creates sounds for marketing and for communications media. And today's talk (the video) –the first of three–, simply and brilliantly introduces us to the world of sounds. Because “hearing better”, is living better...

    Continue Reading...

  • Steven Pinker, in his book "The blank slate; the modern denial of human nature", gathers scientific evidence in regards to the fact that all humans are born equal in terms of those traits which are innate to our species. 
This renown neurolinguist talks here about what has been discovered to be essentially human, and why this knowledge has irated so many people, despite the fact that it can save arts, media, and the humanities in general.

    Steven Pinker: THE PRESENT FAILURE OF ELITE ART TO ATTRACT US is linked to the blank slate theory.

    Steven Pinker, in his book "The blank slate; the modern denial of human nature", gathers scientific evidence in regards to the fact that all humans are born equal in terms of those traits which are innate to our species. This renown neurolinguist talks here about what has been discovered to be essentially human, and why this knowledge has irated so many people, despite the fact that it can save arts, media, and the humanities in general.

    Continue Reading...

  • Like any other schooling system, Modern formal education in the Western world, tends to reproduce in students a certain mindset -a certain frame of mind, therefore privileging a particular type of intelligence --the literate one in this case, over others. 
We must not forget that this type of intelligence is not the only one humans can access, however:  There are other intellectual abilites which it is also worthwhile to acquire, like those an oral culture appreciates, and which are innate to our species.

If we keep basic concept like this is mind, we will be able to make more accurate assumptions about reality, thus improving the quality of the decisions we make,  the worth of our opinions, and their impact in the world.

This article mentions one clear example: How  the differences between the oral and the literate mindsets, and their intrinsic biases, reduce the possibility of reaching a durable and fair solution for conflicts as serious as the Chiapas rebellion in Mexico, thus gravely affecting the life of a whole nation.  The paradigm shift is another example.
__
This is a short version for the general audience, of a very long specialized article that the Revista Digital Universitaria de la UNAM, published in 2002.

    O, YEE PROUD PRINTED LETTER…!, or How we have come to forget the worth and value of orality and “normality” in the last 100 years.

    Like any other schooling system, Modern formal education in the Western world, tends to reproduce in students a certain mindset -a certain frame of mind, therefore privileging a particular type of intelligence --the literate one in this case, over others. We must not forget that this type of intelligence is not the only one humans can access, however: There are other intellectual abilites which it is also worthwhile to acquire, like those an oral culture appreciates, and which are innate to our species. If we keep basic concept like this is mind, we will be able to make more accurate assumptions about reality, thus improving the quality of the decisions we make, the worth of our opinions, and their impact in the world. This article mentions one clear example: How the differences between the oral and the literate mindsets, and their intrinsic biases, reduce the possibility of reaching a durable and fair solution for conflicts as serious as the Chiapas rebellion in Mexico, thus gravely affecting the life of a whole nation. The paradigm shift is another example. __ This is a short version for the general audience, of a very long specialized article that the Revista Digital Universitaria de la UNAM, published in 2002.

    Continue Reading...

  •       Many say that the Digital Revolution --the birth of the internet, mobile (cell) phones, etc.-- killed traditional electronic media (radio, tv and cinema), as well as paper media.
     Nevertheless, when we analyse media sales-and-consumption statistics around the world --and particularly in the Western world, we realize that they started to lose credibility, reach and financial viability, long before the Digital Age.
     This talk makes a quick review of seemingly indestructible mainstream media along centuries and decades of our history --many of whom we are still familiar with, and how and why they met their end.

    When and WHY MASS MEDIA DIE

    Many say that the Digital Revolution --the birth of the internet, mobile (cell) phones, etc.-- killed traditional electronic media (radio, tv and cinema), as well as paper media. Nevertheless, when we analyse media sales-and-consumption statistics around the world --and particularly in the Western world, we realize that they started to lose credibility, reach and financial viability, long before the Digital Age. This talk makes a quick review of seemingly indestructible mainstream media along centuries and decades of our history --many of whom we are still familiar with, and how and why they met their end.

    Continue Reading...

  • People desultorily dismiss Mexican/HispanicAmerican telenovelas wholesale; and they praise and value programs made elsewhere in the same uncritical way  –for example: those from the United States–, without engaging in a case-by-case analysis of each to decide if what is being promoted is useful or beneficial for society, or not. 

This article examines several fictional works based on the Cinderella schema  –“La niñera” (Nanny Fine), and some telenovelas written by Carlos Romero–, to show that the locally produced works –the Mexican ones– are in fact superior to the imported series, precisely because of the values, ideas and beliefs extolled by each culture.

    IN REGARDS TO “CINDERELLAS”…

    People desultorily dismiss Mexican/HispanicAmerican telenovelas wholesale; and they praise and value programs made elsewhere in the same uncritical way –for example: those from the United States–, without engaging in a case-by-case analysis of each to decide if what is being promoted is useful or beneficial for society, or not. This article examines several fictional works based on the Cinderella schema –“La niñera” (Nanny Fine), and some telenovelas written by Carlos Romero–, to show that the locally produced works –the Mexican ones– are in fact superior to the imported series, precisely because of the values, ideas and beliefs extolled by each culture.

    Continue Reading...

  • Media works should dignify and show due appreciation, for domestic professions, because of how deeply both influence our family and social lives.
If we do not want to create the opposite effect, however, this must be done lovingly, knowledgeably, and with a natural respect for our culture: We do not want the audience to laugh at them, or at us, instead of realizing how much of our wellbeing, is the handywork of those who spend their lives creating homes, out of spaces that otherwise would have only been living quarters. Or perhaps not even!

    DOMESTIC PROFESSIONS, a brief “dictionary” for media people

    Media works should dignify and show due appreciation, for domestic professions, because of how deeply both influence our family and social lives. If we do not want to create the opposite effect, however, this must be done lovingly, knowledgeably, and with a natural respect for our culture: We do not want the audience to laugh at them, or at us, instead of realizing how much of our wellbeing, is the handywork of those who spend their lives creating homes, out of spaces that otherwise would have only been living quarters. Or perhaps not even!

    Continue Reading...

  • This web is the result of a seminal discovery, expressed by an uncountable number of impartial consumer and scientific studies: That both because of personal and social reasons, the majority of us want […]

    FOR AUDIENCES WHO LONG TO HAVE FUN WITHOUT SUFFERING (including parents, teachers and all kinds of consumers)

    This web is the result of a seminal discovery, expressed by an uncountable number of impartial consumer and scientific studies: That both because of personal and social reasons, the majority of us want […]

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  • When we study colective aesthetics –like those modelling most popular and folk literatures, there is no way we can divorce the creator from his/her audience. Mass media, just like folk tales, feed precisely […]

    ARTICLES THAT INTEREST EVERYBODY (both creators and consumers)

    When we study colective aesthetics –like those modelling most popular and folk literatures, there is no way we can divorce the creator from his/her audience. Mass media, just like folk tales, feed precisely […]

    Continue Reading...

  • Communications media ARE in a terrible financial state; and not only in Spain, but in the better part of the Western world as well.

Last week news-programs loudly celebrated the fact that in 2010 “more Spanish films than ever before” had been shown (…!) in Spanish movie theaters; but this week only a few mentioned the fact that Madrid's movie theaters had 9% fewer patrons than last year... (Report on the Economic and Social Conditions of Madrid's Residents, apud “Qué” (daily newspaper), October 13, 2011, p. 4).

MacLuhan believed that “the media is the message”, because the dizzying developments in the technology we use to transmit media contents, dazzle and appeal to us in-and-of themselves –it calls out for attention like a volcanic eruption would.  That said, the frenentic technological race is coming to an end –in addition to proving to be extraordinarily costly, both for the media as well as for society.  ...And the contents that those in power allow us to transmit, are further and further removed from what their respective societies would naturally and spontaneously choose to consume, if allowed to.

The “ropes” are on fire; and it would appear that few in the world of Communications media –traditional, electronic or digital–, are prepared to risk it all, shouting “water for the ropes!”. The majority are terrified of speaking out, and of admitting that something is terribly wrong.  And therefore they are losing trustworthiness, influence, audience, and money.

As we already said on another occasion:  Every nation needs media; but the media –without its people– cannot exist at all…

    HELP SAVE MEDIA PEOPLE! (artists, creators, producers, publishers, distributors…)

    Communications media ARE in a terrible financial state; and not only in Spain, but in the better part of the Western world as well. Last week news-programs loudly celebrated the fact that in 2010 “more Spanish films than ever before” had been shown (…!) in Spanish movie theaters; but this week only a few mentioned the fact that Madrid's movie theaters had 9% fewer patrons than last year... (Report on the Economic and Social Conditions of Madrid's Residents, apud “Qué” (daily newspaper), October 13, 2011, p. 4). MacLuhan believed that “the media is the message”, because the dizzying developments in the technology we use to transmit media contents, dazzle and appeal to us in-and-of themselves –it calls out for attention like a volcanic eruption would. That said, the frenentic technological race is coming to an end –in addition to proving to be extraordinarily costly, both for the media as well as for society. ...And the contents that those in power allow us to transmit, are further and further removed from what their respective societies would naturally and spontaneously choose to consume, if allowed to. The “ropes” are on fire; and it would appear that few in the world of Communications media –traditional, electronic or digital–, are prepared to risk it all, shouting “water for the ropes!”. The majority are terrified of speaking out, and of admitting that something is terribly wrong. And therefore they are losing trustworthiness, influence, audience, and money. As we already said on another occasion: Every nation needs media; but the media –without its people– cannot exist at all…

    Continue Reading...

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