It’s a trap!

First I had no idea what I was suppose to do in this Zeitgeist analysis but then I started looking at the worksheet and a few ideas fell in mind. When I came to class to fill the worksheet out with other students I found out that I had fallen victim to “reduction” and only looked at one part of the big picture. My idea was about one designer in Hafnarfjörður who I have seen to be more in the spotlight on blogs and other wed media but in the class I realized that the designer was only a small part of a bigger picture which we brought to life when we filled out the worksheet.

This reduction is clearly an easy trap to fall into while doing this kind of analysis and I walked right into it. There are probably many people who don’t even know who this designer is so it could not reflect the Zeitgeist all by it self. It’s just a piece of the puzzle.

The Zeitgeist is constantly changing so it is very difficult to be on top of everything that is happening. As observers we have to be looking in all directions for clues of the Zeitgeist, even in the “worlds” we don’t think we belong in. Our world (or worlds) is not a wide enough perspective like I found out when sharing my initial idea. That I find quite challenging and didn’t realize that until I started filling out the worksheet.

I’m beginning to discover that the Zeitgeist is kind of like a snowball that starts rolling down a hill and ends up as a enormous avalanche that is hard to dig through to find solid ground; filled with thick description. One event such as the Eyjafjallajökull eruption can point the eye of the world on Iceland and everybody who missed their flight is furious. After that, a massive campaign is started to reclaim tourism to the country, which then blooms and all sorts of Icelandic designers pop up and become popular both with tourists and locals and results of that is still going on today. But we cannot predict the future and maybe I’m also not yet seeing the big picture so something else and new might be around the corner or right in front of me. Maybe next week I will think this blogpost is total bullshit, but that is the fun thing, also very annoying thing, about Zeitgeist, in never stops changing!

3 thoughts on “It’s a trap!

  1. Good! Glad to see that you are beginning to think this way. It is very important to constantly question the frames, structures, and ideas that form our own and others’ thinking. (As if interpreting human behavior is tricky enough… now we learn we also have to interpreting our own even as we try to objectively analyze.) Snowballs, layers, turtles on top of each other – in the end it’s amazing we ever find any firm ground. But that’s half the fun! Keep looking at the fun, try not to be annoyed, but let the annoyance drive you to take another look , and then another, and then another…

  2. If reduction can be a trap, what do you think that the pitfalls broad observations are? How do our own experiences influence how we might fill out or analyze a zeitgeist map?

  3. I fell into that trap too. I just looked at the small picture, when I should have been looking at the bigger one. Then when I went to class and filled out the Zeitgeist form I realised that we have to look around, and take a point of view from different angles.

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