Thursday, March 8, 2007

New Mediaeval Aesthetic

The article New Mediaeval Aesthetic compares the Internet to the medieval monastery system, advising "we might do well to look to the past for clues to our future." "This system of monasteries was the original Internet...connected to a greater consciousness...real and powerful." To further the connection author Rebecca Zorach compares the "mystical intelligence...between god and man" that medieval Christians claim to have held to the "collective wired consciousness" of today's society. She goes on to correlate the introduction of the printing press around 1450 with the new idea of authorship as ownership, of intellectual property. The problem is created with the concept of fair use. She speaks of all the ways in which a writer in medieval times would copy, modify, and use other authors works, that mimic many of the ways people are restricted from using works today. This isn't because it's not written into the law, because it is, in terms of fair use, but with the introduction of the Internet the terms of fair use need to be seriously reconsidered. However, Zorach finds a aesthetic quality in the new definition of publishing that has been made available by the Internet, but warns "The power of information technology is obvious; let us see that it does not, be excluding some from its communion, invent serfdom anew." The author of this article is a medieval art history graduate and so another example, like the Bellagio Declaration, proving the scope of the issue of intellectual properly law and the Internet.

Zorach, Rebecca E. "New Mediaeval Asethetic." Jan. 1994. Wired Magizine. 8 Mar. 2007 -

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