Philosophy of Communication
Mon, May 28 – 9:00am – 10:15am
Location: Valley of the Sun C
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Prayer 1.0: The Biblical Tabernacle and the Problem of Communicating with a Deity
Menahem Blondheim, Hebrew U – Jerusalem, ISRAEL
Orthoprax: Judaism and Accounting
Sharrona Pearl, U of Pennsylvania, USA
Saving Information: Mormonism and Open-Source
Benjamin Peters, U of Tulsa, USA
The Theology and Technology of Omniscience
John Durham Peters , U of Iowa, USA
Stewart M. Hoover, U of Colorado, USA
Mankind’s relationship to deity has long been loaded with communication problems. Prayers to God, like petitions to bureaucrats Elihu Katz once pointed out (1969), involve persuasive appeals aimed at clearing imbalanced power relations, hierarchies of authority, and veils of silence and uncertain response. While the communicative status between man and divinity remains subject to debate, the influence of religious thought on media studies is clear: a number of leading media and communication scholars have found in religious practices deep reservoirs of insight for rethinking both timeless and pressing communication conundrums. Backlit by this tradition, this panel directs critical attention to modern-day digital technologies and techniques that mediate between religious peoples and their mediated practices. In particular, the following panel of scholars mine for insight the technological mediation of ancient and modern minority Judeo-Christian practices. Each paper is motivated by a common concern to critically recover a longer media history understood through the mold of modern media vocabulary, such as, among others, search technologies, two-way communication, complex accounting and record-keeping, public-key cryptography, and databases.