in Culture, Politics and Society, Storytelling

“The kids have no imagination!”

By Limor Shiponi

This statement, made by a very close peer of mine, might look somewhat extreme to you yet it carries more than a seed of truth. Made by someone who has over 25 years experience in performing with people of all ages, she experiences the shift in audiences perception and attention – and she’s not alone.

Some kids can no longer listen to stories, they need to be shown something.

Some kids can no longer look at drawings but light-up when shown the same image on screen.

Some kids can no longer look at photorealistic images – they need a cartoon or an icon.

Some kids look deaf if you don’t shout at them or over animate every word you say.

Some adults can no longer listen to stories not about the present or the close past.

Some adults can no longer listen to stories not about themselves.

Some adults can no longer listen to stories not told by them.

They find folktales irrelevant, not utilitarian enough.

The power of the spoken word hasn’t disappeared and it never will. But with the enormous forces applied by hardware, software, advertising and media corporations – to consume, consume and consume some more – kids brains are being rewired. What to? pretty simple – to consume media. Lately becoming a synonym to advertising.

The implications of this reality are devastating. If, on the other hand, you think this ‘media wash’ is pretty cool and innovative, consider Coca Cola for your ministry of education.

Maybe not (yet).

P.S. Just before releasing this post I noticed Daniel Pink tweeting this post.

imagination-storytelling

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  1. I absolutely agree with you.
    We are hurtling towards a future where our people will be severely dependent on technology that is making them dumber and dumber.
    I look at my kids, I Iook at young people I teach, and I don’t know what the remedy is….

    • Welcome and thanks for the comment. I think the remedy is educating them about the fact they have more than one choice.
      Regards,

  2. Thank you for this.. its a perspective I don’t get access to, with young people and I’m grateful. My only critique would be to correctly spell the word losing in your quote . It’s a common mistake but cringeworthy nonetheless..

    • You’re lucky 🙂 thank for the correction. Interestingly enough, the spell checker didn’t get it… common mistakes get social approval too fast these days.

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