All 12 entries tagged Zp V Academic

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April 19, 2006

Game playing and domestic violence

By interviewing some of my research subject, one question interestingly arises is the link between game playing and domestic violence. The girl I interviewed in the afternoon seems to be quite confirmed that her boyfriend's violent behaviour during their fightings is more or less caused by his obsessive playing of computer games. I have overheard from another friend about his Japanese flatmate being violently treated by her boyfriend who also happen to be a game addict. Although I see it more caused by social isolation and stupidity which can be caused by other things as well, but there is a role of computer/video games in the development of such situation. Nevertheless, it is also arguable that certain people would react differently towards technologies. So I tend not to draw a generalised analysis. I only want to look at the cases that I am dealing with.

Of course it's unfair to draw a conclusion that computer gamers has a tendency to commit domestic violence to their girlfriends – I know quite a few really really nice and positive game addicts as well. But it is also necessary to draw attention to this group of game addicts (though due to the limitation of data collected only confined to the group of 20 something Chinese oversea students). As this girl described, he has nothing else to look for in his dull life so that he stays at home and plays games all the time. He got so involved in games that he is as arogant as the Generation Xbox Erin Biba described that believes in – 'killing the bad guys and saving the universe…'. He believed a solution to everything – climbed the window of his girlfriend's room while she went away with another guy, he kneel down and cried in front of her house, he posted their stories on populous online forums with real pictures and explicit contents … He believed himself to be very mature and seldom communicate with his girlfriend because she knows nothing.

At this point it is promptly enough to raise the question that why the consoles dumping down some while helping the others to develop their life ambition and getting sociable. To some, their social world only confined in the virtual world – like this girl's ex, he only talks to people who plays game with him; for others the social world elsewhere is more important. And why is that? All those varieties of game relating behaviours and disvision of social spaces? The girlfriend gave some interesting insight to this question: her ex is a second and youngest son of the family, the elder sister is over 4 years older than him. In a family values the boy baby very preciously (as the Chinese saying goes 重男轻女 weigh the boy and lighten the girl), he is much spoiled and developed a selfish personality. This explanation, though a bit too obvious, is often neglected as well. In China, there is a huge gaming population. Time to time I even overheard advices from young mothers that to avoid marrying the new male generation – 'they are the only child, not knowing how to take care of themselves let alone you'. The Chinese women's mentality of being taken care of in a relationship, socially and mentally, is also one problematic area, which can be one of the reasons the gradual isolation from the bigger social context after the couple getting together.

The more research done, the less I believe the social constructionists' theories that everything can be socially constructed. This only apply to certain extent, in other circumstances, if comparing two socially identical subjects, I guess the answer might only lies in the genes. It is perhaps inevitable to accept the proposition that everything is decided when it starts.

Why I interview the girlfriends – obviously, they are the real experts of these gamers, they have more expertise on aspects in their daily life than the gamers themselves. The latters has too little time to spare to observe these. I found this sort of secondary interviews more informative than first person interviews.

April 17, 2006

The geeky world – digesting an afternoon reading the geeky stuffs

It's hard to distinguish myself from a geek:

This week I have received three warning letters from eBay concerning about my bad consuming behaviours – bidding without paying. Such emails reflect nothing but my craze of e-shopping. Apart from various fake eBay buyings, I have also done a lot of business with Amazon this week – a voice recorder and some few books. One of my secret admirers (or at least I'd like to think it this way) even sent me a book anonymously via Amazon. My life is half based on virtual spaces: I update my iTunes and MSN Messenger every two weeks, I use google everyday, check my hotmail ten times a day, most geekily I have a blog empire in which each blog doesn't make much sense. But then from what's written you can also tell that my geeky experiences are really confined with e-consumerism which is not too much distinctive from the traditional forms besides the fact that it is designed more to slackers like me.

Of course most of the geeky producers are not half as lazy as I am. They do some good things except from draining money from the Generation G (game/geek). Pam Omidyar, who happens to be the wife of eBay founder, is working on an interesting "'serious game' ": link called re-Mission, modelling a female fighter called Roxxi fighting against cancer cells. After the testing this month, they will send this game to several health centres free in the hope that young patients suffering from cancer would benefit from the game playing experience: gain some knowledge of how cancer cells work and confidence in fighting against it.

Technologies based on virtual spaces seem to have merged with real life solutions more and more. Apart from helping to fight cancer, we also see in-game advertisements booming; a good number of faithful game fans putting on costumes in the games and name such act as Cosplay – which gradually becomes a serious art; if a USB -compatible vibrator is invented cyber-sex can be as 'real' as sex in bed; so that someone suggest that our generation is no doubtedly a generation G, giving out some significant features to distinguish this peer from others, if any:

1. arrogance: heroism towards killing the bad to preserve the good
2. sociability: being alone at home with a connected computer is not 'alone'
3. coordination: 'visual processing dramatically increases with as little as 10 hours of gameplay'
4. flexibility: to win a game there is always several ways, same to real problem solution.
5. competitiveness
6. insubordination

But is there generation G? I have not gotten any concrete evidence yet, but people spending a lot of time on virtual seems to be concentrating in the city. It is at least more explainable like this: living in block apartment, the space distributed to each person on average is far from sufficient to feel free. So in order to chase that eternal desire for freedom virtual spaces become extension of real spaces. I think it's rather generation U (urbanisation) rather than generation G. :) Moreover, like other medias, the creation of virtual space does not change the core of the system – it is after all consumerism that is the bread feeding this whole internet/game industry, among which there are charities and NGOs like the Hope Lab who hosts re-Mission mentioned above. Generation G (or even generation U) is after all no difference from generation XYZs.

(information generated from the Wired magazine April 2006)

January 12, 2006

A cultural production, a quasi–ethnography research, and a translation

Jacky Cheung: She listens to my concert (1999)

歌手:张学友 专辑:走过1999)_


a very literal translation below (by me)
She listens to my concert
from the first dating at her 17
when the boy lined up for her through the night
half a year saving, in exchange of tickets a pair
I sang, haunted her heart, tattered her heart
three years affection enclosed in a letter
she remembers the train left whistled and prompted
on the platform my songs accompanied people in tears
ah, accompanied them in tears
She listens to my concert
At her 25s, relationship is bright as sun-shine
but the boyfriend sent roses to someone else
screened the phone, she stayed up with my songs
then I sang, haunted her heart
tattered her heart
the breaking-up seems apathy to the grown-ups
Karaok and alcohol would cure alone
she sang my song, flickering pictures accompanied her in tears
ah, accompanied her in tears
I sang, haunted her heart
I sang, tattered her heart
True love seemed so precious at age 33
but the youngster pushed her away
only the man decided with whom fly faraway
ah, with whom he flied away
I sang, haunted her heart
I sang, tattered her heart
She tried to regain her vigour
years go by, we sang
we have no grudge against god or man
in the applauses my songs prompted my tears
ah, my song accompanied myself in tears
She listens to my concert
lasting passion in music lingers a 40some woman in charm
she was accompanied in tears, her child concerns
man on the side sleeps and snores
she listens to our concert in silence

(will disclose my analysis later, when I finish it as a part of my essay under construction lol )

January 10, 2006

Rationale of audience studies

Lies in Radway's manifesto towards her sophisticated designed ethnographic projects for investigating popular culture tribes. At least, this is the first time I got so much touched and made my mind up – 'yeh, this study makes sense.'

In her paper titled ‘Reception Study: ethnography and the problems of dispersed audiences and nomadic subjects’ she rationalised a core purpose of doing research in fields of popular culture: articulating the production of subjectivity. Popular cultures, in her eyes, are the remains of sites where the individual is to distinguish from the dominant culture institutionalised self. From the very first instance we were taught to confine our play space to a bounded space by our parents, the line of social productive time and personal time (maybe what we’d like to call wasteheads time ;)) was drawn. The borderline is strengthened in the school demarcation of classroom and playground, and in sequence, scaled to the leisure spaces we then automatically define as private and non-serious throughout the adulthood. For Radway, the hypothesis of the studies on those sphere is that these are ‘of empowerment where individuals experience pleasure and affective intensity and therefore construct themselves as knowing, powerful subjects’. In other words, these are places where people stop being societal productive as only a part of the collective whole and think, with the remaining part of self (if there is such a thing), 'what’s the meaning of life to me', and exactly where the core of subjectivity is produced. Thus she suggested that ethnography is the very suitable way to investigate such articulation where dominate culture of the superstructure is interacted, negotiated, and resisted hence consequently make meaning in personal lives. The validity of ethnography here is due to its flexible departure of conducting in the discourse, well not even discourse, the whole context of particular politically bounded/regionalised collectives; its processing of observing the subjectivities of such collectives as it flows; its premise of not to base the research fundamentals on any particular disciplinary circuit; and its requirement to the researchers of not being high up the sky but to be an objective part of the observed groups. Ethnography is a research method originated in anthropology where it was presented as ‘a written account of a lengthy social interaction between a scholar and a distant culture.’ It has been so far widely applied to almost all social studies disciplines. In media studies, it is especially widely conducted in audience research. In some cases, it was also carried out with production groups to examine in the face where the legitimated culture has its subjectivities derived. (I think it’s a research carried out by Roger Silverstone with a BBC science programme production group, can’t remember the name now.)

Radway, Janice. (1988) ‘Reception Study: ethnography and the problems of dispersed audiences and nomadic subjects’ in Cultural Studies. 2 (3)

October 25, 2005

Romance of Redlight

Writing about web page

I've always loved this story and thought about translate it into English, so that my friends can read such a beautiful but sad piece. I've always hesitated to do so, because it is so beautiful that I know I would deteriorate it. But there we are, no matter how lame it will be, I will give it a try.

As you can see with the title, this is a story about a prostitute and her less ordinary life.

(To be continued…)

I'm such a lazy translator!

Romance of Relight is written by the extrordinary Hongkongnese female writer Huang Biyun.

It's all about extreme situations in life, all about reducing the repetition of life.

May 03, 2005

Demoncratisation of culture

John Storey(2001) says that the Frankfur School doesn't oppose to the concept of demoncratisation of culture, it's just the current cultural industry blocks the demand of full demoncracy and thus stablises the prevailing social order. However, isn't the whole concept of demoncracy capitalist? Adorno used the contrast pair of reception of radio and telephone to clarify the differences between demoncratised culture products and liberal art. (The Culture Industry: Enlightment as Mass Deception) To my understanding of Adorno's text, demoncracy in the context of culture means passive reception but equal offers while liberal means multi-dimentional readings and spontaneous reaction. I wonder if it is right to say so?

March 26, 2005

the Period of Spring and Autumn

Writing about web page

春秋 (前770-前476)


the Period of Spring and Autumn (770–476 BC)

The Period of Spring and Autumn started from the event of Ping the Zhou Emperor moving the capital eastwards. The period is named after the history document of Lu county of the same name.

Today I came across that the activities of translating and foreign affairs in China can be dated back to that period. Although have encounted this term for thousands of times from history books, this is actually the first time I seriously questioned its naming.

BTW, this is a great internet resource as well :)

and there's something irrelevant I want to mention otherwise I will forget it. That is, when Chinese women tried to climb the social ladders, it was either the process that was very bloody or the result was traumatic. Historically, none of the powerful Chinese women survived in the history books without stigma. The tough struggle they made surely made them hysterious when they finally succeed. Or was it just the way people portrayed them, as mad female politicians? That's all for now.

February 21, 2005

Hey here is a trick!

Writing about an entry you don't have permission to view

Don't have much to write on blog recently, well, having a lot other things to write… but follow the link, there is a very funny quote~~

When the letters don't really make much sense, why do we still care about spelling so much? Is it sort of social obligation/pressure to test whether you are a decent person rather than testing your expressing abilty? We haven't even came across the function of spelling in our Systemic Functional Linguistic approaches…

February 12, 2005

manipulate v.

操纵? 控制? 利用?


January 03, 2005


Writing about web page

below is a collection of translation to this poem I found in other site.

1. Our body is the Bodhi-tree,
And our mind a mirror bright.
Carefully we wipe them hour by hour,
And let no dust alight.


2. Let your body be a Buddhist tree,
Let your mind be like a bright mirror,
And often clean them all over,
Then free from dust they will be.

3. Let your body be a Buddhist tree,
And your mind a bright mirror,
And often clean them all over,
Then free from dust they will be.

4. There is no Buddhist tree at all,
And there is bright mirror nor.
Now there is nothing at all,
How could be dust any more?

5. In essence, Bodhi has no tree,
And the bright mirror does not exist,
In essence, there is not a thing,
On what then can dust be found?

6. Our body be a Bodhi tree,
Our mind a mirror bright,
Clean and polish frequently,
Let no dust alight.

7. The body is tree of Awakening,
The Mind is like a clear mirror,
At all times we must strive to polish it,
And must not let the dust collect.

8. Awakening originally has no tree,
The mirror also has no stand,

The Buddha nature is always clean and pure.
Where is the room for dust?

9.There is no Bodhi tree,
Nor stand of a mirror bright,
Since all is void,
Where can the dust alight?

source/check for detailed reference in the source website

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