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Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Fascinating

Have you ever seen Postsecret? There is a poignant vulnerability and humanity to this blog, wherein people anonymously share secrets on homemade postcards. It is fascinating. Beyond the poignancy, which draws you in, there might also be a voyeuristic attraction to it, too -- though whether a vicious voyeurism or not, I'm not certain.
(Tip o' the hat to Alastair at 40 Bicycles for the reference.)

3 Comments:

Blogger Gaunilo said...

That's a fascinating site! I've visited it periodically for a while now. I definitely think there's an element of voyeurism to it, though.

Isn't it interesting how people will share their most intimate secrets to the internet and (potentially) millions of people - even if it is anonymously? I wonder that says about our perceptions of publicness and identity.

Come to think of it, it's a lot like blogging....

Wednesday, April 13, 2005 9:00:00 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

Gaunilo:
Yes, I think there is an element of voyeurism to it, but I'm still puzzling out whether it is vicious or not. (I suppose there is a definite form of exhibitionism involved, too.) But I'm not sure that I am transfixed by prurient interest. Part of the fascination of it is the combination of intimate revelation and anonymity that then opens up some avenue of humanity in myself: "Oh, they've had that thought too", or "Yes, I've always suspected as much", or "How touching!" (I found the postcard about showing kindness to an ex-wife particularly poignant, though not because I've been in that particular situation.) But I wonder then if the vicious element in it is not prurient interest, schadenfreude, or blunt lust, but rather narcissism, in reading myself onto others who are not properly myself? Just a thought.

And yes, if blogging is not the ultimate contemporary exercise of exhibitionism and narcissism simultaneously, I'll eat my hat.
cheers,
JF

Friday, April 15, 2005 4:31:00 AM  
Blogger Gaunilo said...

That's interesting - I think that part of the fascination many have with "texts" like Postsecret and blogs in general is that the presence of anonymity and mediated remoteness in such close (paradoxical!) conjunction with emotional intimacy allows a high degree of projection - they are texts whose meaning is very much reader-centered.

That said, I don't mean to sound cynical (or vicious!). There's no denying the incredible poignancy of some of those postcards, and the very real connections that occur through blogging.

Friday, April 15, 2005 4:37:00 PM  

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