The Shallows: What the Internet if Doing to our Brains by Nicholas Carr, a bestseller published in 2011. This book talks about the development/evolution of Digital Information Technologies and the social and societal effects that have arisen in the last decade. I am sure you can see that such considerations certainly lie at the heart of so many aspects of our lives today. Make sure that you take you time to carefully read this book, including looking up terms, historical background, or other elements that you are unfamiliar with, WHILE making plenty of notes and underlining in the text itself. Upon completion of reading the book, the next major paper assignment will follow. Close and attentive reading (“deep” reading to use Carr’s term, which you will soon become familiar with) is essential. The HW Study Questions are not simply a test of whether or not you are keeping up with the reading (though, certainly, that will also be revealed), rather, the HW questions are directly designed to assist your understanding of the text AND begin compiling materials, ideas, and quotes that will help with the paper writing assignment.
Now, let’s dive into this interesting and very pertinent (look up this word if needed) work by Nicholas Carr, starting with some of his foundational ideas–read pages 1-35, then consider these questions:
1. Ch.1 tells the story of the first decade of digital evolution. Why does Carr tell this history
2. The brain is plastic. Explain. “We become, neurologically, what we think.” (p.33) What does Carr mean when he says this?
3. Explain the showdown between the instrumentalists and the determinists. Who wins? How does this relate to the main points Carr is developing?
IMPORTANT: For all HW Study Questions, include questions on your homework. Also, be sure to provide well-explained text evidence (quotes with page numbers) for all your answers, and remember to follow the formatting rules as articulated in the syllabus.
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