Intolerance of distinctions Intolerance of distinctions between male and female
The continuous stream of information provided through the media, and other means characteristic of high technological societies, juxtaposes, and tends to reduce to the same level in the receiver's mind, very different kinds and categories of information. Although these may in fact differ not only in a superficial qualitative sense (some being better or worse, however these are defined), the person viewing such information, as in the case of television, comes to see such programmes as one kind of thing, where they are in fact an amalgam of very heterogeneous material, in a far deeper qualitative sense. The effect of the continuousness with which such material is presented for entertainment is that it tends to blur the qualitative distinctions between the different kinds of material. A scene of soldiers fighting and dying in a real war zone may precede or follow a scene from a war play with actors simulating war. A politician trying to raise real issues on which the population is to make up its mind may precede or follow a comedian using who is merely using his personality to amuse an audience. It is inevitable, therefore, that the distinctions between the real and the artificial tend to become blurred, at least subconsciously. The critical consequence is that even those who are quite clear in their minds as to what is reality and what is fiction, the ultimate qualitative judgement is made on the basis of entertainment values. Thus scenes of the death of real soldiers are then judged on the basis of whether they are more or less moving, absorbing, entertaining than the actors in the war play, and the politician by whether his performance was as entertaining as that of the comedian.
The Encyclopedia of World Problems and Human Potential is a collaboration between UIA and Mankind 2000, started in 1972. It is the result of an ambitious effort to collect and present information on the problems with which humanity is confronted, as well as the challenges such problems pose to concept formation, values and development strategies. Problems included are those identified in international periodicals but especially in the documents of some 60,000 international non-profit organizations, profiled in the Yearbook of International Organizations.
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