What’s Up in the World? - Weekly Digest 20/05/2016 Written by Harriet Lane-Tobin

With the constant pressure to do the ‘right’ thing. I have chosen to use this week's digest to explore the importance and validation of sometimes doing what is deemed to be ‘wrong’. Whether it be overly coddling the youth of today, defining a meaning, trial and error in the workplace or how you choose to present yourself to the world, the wrong can sometimes teach as many valuable and important lessons as the right.

Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett’s Guardian article emphases the significance of the student and the ‘safe’ space of the ivory tower. Where some would argue the negatives around universities these days creating a new generation of over-sensitive, trigger-warning-inclined youth, others say this is powerful as it creates a new kind of politic, unapologetic and uncensored. Raising the flag and starting the changes that ‘need’ to happen. “Worthy and irritating though student politics may sometimes be, many of us would miss it” (Cosslett 2016).

Noah Berlatsky’s Chronicle article details the issues around interpretation, expertise and art. Berlatsky argues that there is a value to interpretation, whether that be the ‘right’ or the ‘wrong,’ and this is where art holds its power. Berlatsky states that “In art, a misinterpretation may be wrong, but it is always an opportunity” (2016). In other disciplines misinterpretation prevents knowledge from expanding, but here it allows for knowledge to grow and more avenues to be explored. 

Collette Devlin’s Stuff article shows the importance of failure. Devlin relates this to the culture of failure associated with big business. She interviews Silicon Valley businessman Gary Bolles, who says that in New Zealand at large failure is something to embrace rather than hide from, as people traditionally have been seen to do. “Failure is something we need to bake into our culture, so that it is okay to learn and move on until we find the right way to do something.” (Bolles cited in Devlin 2016). Sometimes getting something wrong holds a special value that grows one more than getting it right.

Wendy Syfret’s i-d article on Vice details the significance of the nude selfie. Syfret does so by interviewing PHD student Matthew Hart. Here it is argued the nude selfie is more than simplistic narcissism. Rather it is an intimate adventure in identity that allows the documenter to explore this in anyway they deem fit. Even if it pushes social expectations and taboos. 


Photo Credit to Wikipedia Commons via i.d-vice.com

Photo Credit to Wikipedia Commons via i.d-vice.com