Chapter 5: The Peek-a-Boo World
1. Postman argues that in the middle of the nineteenth century two ideas came together which formed a new metaphor for public discourse. What are those two ideas?
2. Do you agree with Postman that telegraphy “destroyed the prevailing definition of information, and in doing so gave a new meaning to public discourse” (65)? Why or why not?
3. Postman asserts that “information derives its importance from the possibilities of action” (68). Is this true? Can you think of counter-examples which do not fit his assertion? What is the danger of this viewpoint?
4. What is the real value of information measured by?
5. Christ taught us to not needlessly multiply words (Matt 5:33-37). Do we debase our cultural conversation simply by the sheer volume of talk?