10:04: Permanence in the Age of Social Media

After reading the first two chapters of Lerner’s 10:04, and subsequently realizing I had then already read The Golden Vanity, I found it really interesting how “the author” contemplates the idea of what is permanent in our society, whether these thoughts come from the fact that he wants to expand his short story to become a credible author, his thoughts of whether or not a storm could destroy the world as he knows it, or simply what it means to forget the memory of pain versus never feeling it in the first place. This was summed up in a really great line from The Golden Vanity when he says, “‘I’m also surprised to find,’ the author said, ignoring him, ‘that I want to have “papers,” want to leave and be left those traces, that it would authenticate me.'” For me, this line brings up the question that even though everything we post online is “permanent”, we still consider paper copies of books or documents to be more authentic and lasting than their digital counterparts. Does this mean physical books will survive the progression towards digitization or will they disappear too, along with authenticity?

One thought on “10:04: Permanence in the Age of Social Media

  1. It’s an interesting question, especially because the digital vs. print media struggle seems to live on in the background of our lives. I’m more inclined to believe that physical books will linger but would become more artifact than means of consuming literature and the value would be placed on the aesthetic more so than the contents. The odd co-existence of digital and print also parallels how the narrator mentions how he associates important news with the location where he finds out, usually through his phone, and how that’s such a modern convention as opposed to how physical notices, such as post, which would take much longer to arrive and the location would play no role since the news would be presented in a home rather than various places.


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