[iDC] An Inconvenient Youth and Second Life

Brian Holmes brian.holmes at wanadoo.fr
Sat Feb 24 20:24:04 EST 2007

Trebor Scholz wrote:

 > My main question to Jenkins and all of you concerns the relationship
 > between this virtual world and "first life." Do these virtual worlds
 > merely provide an inconvenient youth with a valve to live their
 > fantasies of social change (elsewhere), or do they, in some
 > measurable way, fertilize politics in the world beyond the screen?

It seems to me a lot like the unanswerable question of art itself.

To my mind, there is only one way to address such questions: by plunging 
into whatever kind of fiction or fantasy it is, and trying to suss out 
all the connections to or disjunctions from the rest of lived 
experience. In this case I am not existentially qualified to do it. But 
my experience with a lot of other fantasies and fictions tends to show 
that "art," in the age of biopolitics, is deeply instrumentalized, and 
most often in the service of powerful agendas, put into effect by groups 
which have the ability to manipulate the basic parameters of our 
environments, be they "virtual" or "actual." I'm sure it would be very 
enlightening to read a full-on critique of Second Life, and I would like 
to see one here. Which wouldn't preclude the possibility of doing 
something interesting with the medium. An inconvenient youth can be the 
best kind, imho.

best, Brian

More information about the iDC mailing list