My search for a teaching home begins

Following my own advice to go local, I’m ready to settle down in a real place and time. I’m hoping that will be teaching media, interactivity, and narrative in a friendly, NY-area program that offers me a place to do it in an ongoing way. Strange to have a moment of “openness” like this.

To that end, I’m doing talks at some of my favorite schools in the area, to meet people and let my intentions be known. Two weeks ago, I had a great time at the New School – where I was truly inspired by the radical stripe of the student body. It did not feel fake.

This Wednesday at noon, I’ll be at Polytechnic Institute of NYU, in Brooklyn, speaking about “The End of Narrative.”

A Lecture by Douglas Rushkoff

Presented by The Brooklyn Experimental Media Center and the Dibner Family Chair in the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology

Interactivity changes our relationship to stories as well as the technologies through which they are transmitted. Where the power of a story to influence audiences often depended on the mysteriousness of the medium through which it was told, today’s storytellers must actually engender trust and playfulness – and they must do so on an increasingly violent paranoid playing field.

These are the challenges confronting anyone who wishes to communicate in today’s mediaspace. Do we create myths to compete with the ones we hope to dispel? Or do we abandon myth altogether? Is the traditional story itself a relic, incapable of providing meaning over time? Are the kinds of meaning it can convey biased towards creating childlike passivity in the recipients? Is it our job to create stories capable of competing with the ones currently programming our society, or to abandon this arms race altogether in favor of new artistic and cognitive mechanisms. And, if so, what are they?