Physical Adaptations to New Media

“Our experience of stories exist as representation of exterior worlds and they may be described as such, but at the same time they are body-brain-internal processes that need to follow the innate specification of that platform” (Grodal 130).

Grodal uses the story as a way to kind of materialize experiences and help us to visualize the connection between external events and our internal reactions to them.  He examines media through the ages and how as media build on each other and the stories become more and more complex, our interactions with these media shift as well.  Because new media almost inevitably infiltrates our lives and our personal experiences, our bodies are forced to actually physically adapt to them in order to successfully function in society.  Just as societies once existed without knowing how to speak or read or type, a society will one day exist in awe of our primitive society.  Technology is human evolution and it manifests itself on many levels, including the physical.

But these physical adaptations do not come without psychosomatic counterparts.  As our bodies change to introduce this new technology into our society, so do our psyches.  Our individual perceptions shift as do our societal norms and values.  The things we find aesthetically pleasing, the physical actions we find acceptable/taboo, the stereotypes we assign are constantly shifting as media continues to transform and evolve.

Grodal cites one of our major misinterpretations of stories as attempting to define them as “being based on a ‘retelling’ or ‘representation,’ not as an experience that takes place in a progressing present” (134).  We often find ourselves shocked by technological and societal changes.  We, for some reason, seem to expect our world to remain static, when, in fact, this is a completely unnatural assumption.  Everything around us is constantly changing.  The world is spinning, time is progressing, everything is altered.  We, of course, are no exception.  We adapt to our environment in order to survive.  New technologies take over, leaving us incompetent without them.  The new media controls the age in which we live.  The medium is the message.

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