2019 - 22nd Annual Steven Galovich Memorial Student Symposium

Presentation Title

Is Social Media Content Art?

Student Presenter(s) and Advisor

Sawyer Shepard, Lake Forest CollegeFollow

Department or Major

Philosophy

Location

Lillard 048

Abstract

I investigate whether the postings of photographs, videos, etc., on social media can be considered art, as they might be if we encountered them in a museum or a book. In Plato’s Gorgias, the interlocutors distinguish works of art from forms of flattery, roughly as persuasive practices performed with and without knowledge, respectively; this distinction is apt for considering social media. In their work, "The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception," Adorno and Horkheimer critique mass-produced cultural products. Their work is readily applicable to social media. I conclude that photography, etc., posted on social media should not be considered art, but rather a kind of flattery, using a variety of real-world examples to flesh out my claim.

Presentation Type

Individual Presentation

Start Date

4-9-2019 1:00 PM

End Date

4-9-2019 2:15 PM

Panel

What is it? Philosophy at the Boundaries

Panel Moderator

Janet McCracken

Field of Study for Presentation

Art, Communication, Digital Media Design, Economics, Philosophy, Politics, Print and Digital Publishing, Social Justice

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Apr 9th, 1:00 PM Apr 9th, 2:15 PM

Is Social Media Content Art?

Lillard 048

I investigate whether the postings of photographs, videos, etc., on social media can be considered art, as they might be if we encountered them in a museum or a book. In Plato’s Gorgias, the interlocutors distinguish works of art from forms of flattery, roughly as persuasive practices performed with and without knowledge, respectively; this distinction is apt for considering social media. In their work, "The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception," Adorno and Horkheimer critique mass-produced cultural products. Their work is readily applicable to social media. I conclude that photography, etc., posted on social media should not be considered art, but rather a kind of flattery, using a variety of real-world examples to flesh out my claim.