A graveyard of lost cultures

I am currently reading (among other things) Dark Age Ahead by Jane Jacobs. How could I resist, I think I have listened to it at least four times on CBC's Ideas (they seemed to repeat it over and over and over again during the summer season).

...in North America we live in a graveyard of lost aboriginal cultures, many of which were decisively finished off by mass amnesia in which even the memory of what was lost was also lost.
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Writing, printing, and the Internet give a false sense of security about the permanence of culture. Most of the million details of a complex, living culture are transmitted neither in writing nor pictorially. Instead, cultures live through word of mouth and example. That is why we have cooking classes and cooking demonstrations, as well as cookbooks. That is why we have apprenticeships, internships, student tours, and on-the-job training as well as manuals and textbooks.


You can read the whole of chapter 1 from the link above.

Comments

Prince Romp said…
This is good for bookworms community. Seems like you are one of them but wearing cycling helmet.

I heard, there's a shooting incident in one of Montreal school last night.

Hope the incident happened far away from where you live. Otherwise i have to post another tribute.
I have read and heard a lot about her but have yet to read anything of hers. She was a lady way ahead of her time. Very cool.

I listen to CBC quite a bit too. I still really miss that familiar trademark voice of Peter Gzoswki (sp?) at Morningside! He always asked all the questions I would want to have asked. He was very non-threatening to the people being interviewed.
Barbara said…
Personally I mourn the loss of printed photos and hand-written letters, both of which have been eliminated by the Internet. I question the legacy we will leave behind when it is all tied up in cyberspace and not in a tangible mode.

From the standpoint of electronic records, I am responsible for archiving the data from our national survey so that in 72 years Americans can find out what their ancestors had to say in the year 2006. We are striving for a data format that will eliminate the need for any special software. But you know how much technology will change in 72 years. It's a real challenge once you leave the written word!
Richard said…
prince romp: yeah, I am a bookwork - althoough, I prefer the term bibliophile.

The shooting was donwtown. Sofia works downtown, but it did not affect her. I work in Ottawa (200Km away) - so it definitely did not affect me.

I went to Dawson college between 1983 and 1986 - although, at the time, it was spread over several buildings across town. In the 90s, they consolidated into one building.

MOI: Gzoswki was good - although I hated Vicki Gabereau. I tend to listen to the radio only when driving. So I listen a lot to As it Happens and Ideas because I tend to be in the car at those times. I also used to listen Saturday Night Blues years ago when I used to rturn from Montreal.

barbara: interestingly, I have a blog idea in my head on permanence of information. Paper is by far the best medium. CDs tend to die before 10 years. Magnetic media certainly doesn't last. I am pretty sure they will choose some form of XML encoding.
I'm with ya on Vicki. That Sat. night show was pretty good the times I listened..haven't for awhile so I don't even know if it's still on. Gzsowski went to school with Valdy, who married one of my very good friends. He was on the show a lot and did tons of literacy benefits for Peter.
I've even listened to CBC on Christmas Eve on the way somewhere! I love the story they traditonally air.
freckled-one said…
This is one I hadn't heard of, it sounds interesting. Thanks for sharing it with us.

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