Human Inertia and Cell Phone Conversations

Abstract
Cellular, or mobile phones are great: they allow people to communicate over long distances whenever and wherever they are, and instantaneously at that when the one called is wearing one too. Having said that, though, it must immediately be added that they, also, have a complex disadvantage, and it is one we are hard pushed to understand. In fact, due to its complexity people simply tend to neglect it, even though everyone in his right mind has had experience with it. Now Walter Benjamin defined aura as “a distance however close it may be”.1) This has standardly been interpreted as a characterisation of an experience of presence, also by Benjamin. This aura supposedly suffered from the rise of photography. Aura can, also, be understood as inertia, the absence of something present. And whether aura is gone or widespread I gladly leave to more speculative-minded thinkers. I submit that we experience a person’s “aura”—her distance however close she may be—when perception tells us the person is present yet our mind realises that she isn’t. I am referring here to the observation had of another person engaged in a cell phone conversation. The inertia of the cell phone caller consists in her incapacity to address those who observe her. I think there is an immoral streak to her selfappointed moral autonomy. In a previous edition of this Dutch-Russian exchange on inertia I argued that our trafficking with facial expressions forms the model with which we’d best understand the workings of art—facial expression is the anthropological foundation of art. My discussion, today, of the cell phone conversation is meant to add to that previous suggestion
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index Translate to english
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 11,074
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Similar books and articles
Carolina Sartorio (2008). Moral Inertia. Philosophical Studies 140 (1):117 - 133.
Yvonne Sherratt (1998). Aura: The Aesthetic of Redemption? Philosophy and Social Criticism 24 (1):25-41.
Thomas J. McLaughlin (2008). Nature and Inertia. Review of Metaphysics 62 (2):251-284.
Yvonne Sherratt (2007). Adorno's Aesthetic Concept of Aura. Philosophy and Social Criticism 33 (2):155-177.
Edward Feser (2011). Existential Inertia and the Five Ways. American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 85 (2):237-267.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2011-04-24

Total downloads

10 ( #146,756 of 1,101,579 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #292,059 of 1,101,579 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.