All of the writers I know are avid readers. All of the academics I know, (with thanks to Maynooth, DMU, UCD, TCD and the TCD/UCD Innovation Academy, various lists & communities etc, etc, - that's now quite a few) despite having discipline centric reading habits, often tend towards broad tastes and eclectic interests. When searching for the ideal prints, you do gotta kiss a lota frogs, amass a lorra paper and lorry those loose leaves to the charity shops. We live in a slippery segue between what Bolter calls 'the late age of print' and a genuinely networked (read ubiquitous computing) society. As usual the actual is much more fuzzy than the logically apparent.
Thus over the years I've found myself on many occasions reading (& in truth/most cases not actually finishing) the majority of the western cannon of philosophical works. From the big three, through the big four, across into anthropology, up into sociology, down into ACT, over into psychology, back into linguistics, forward into cultural theory, skipping above game theory. You get the picture.. a sort of cross between subject scrabble and four dimensional snakes and ladders. All that alongside literary theory, beside practical creative writing and narratology while supported by a vast array of actual writing talent and spectacular works of foundational literature. Really, is it any wonder I get confused occasionally.
So in today's networked interdisciplinary global village, the capitalist cogs of our western cognitive societies trundle along to a fanfare of frantic fordism. Following the global economic collapse, innovation is again top of our agenda, we need to find a new way to do the old things, we simply must preserve our way of life while the economic edifice of our society undergoes ethical erosion. The old Irish Government gave the new Irish government the same broom it has used for the last fourteen years. We'll shift some stuff from the corners but won't actually expect anything new that could be regarded as sweeping change. The IMF and ECB own our floor at present anyway.
As someone who is as often skeptical as I am comically inclined, It is seriously tough to live with first world problems and witness the turmoil, trouble and tragedy that is befalling other parts of the world, in terms of conscience wrenching ethical observations of suggested jiggery pokery. Living in an established, civilized, post-colonial democracy and understanding that our actual oligarchy is peppered with corruption, cronyism and resident buffoonery doesn't augur well for those currently seeking a version of our brand of cosmopolitan capitalism or DIY democracy. One major promise of the internet and web 2.0 is the enabling of that collective democracy, that cyberspace would be an opportunity not only in terms of communication and democratization but also liberation.
The current post building boom malaise in this country is due to economic gloom, financial ruin, a hegemonic construct brought about by the greed of privileged individuals and the unethical capitalist whoring by banks. Some things should not be for sale, freedom is obviously one of them.