Sunday, April 20, 2008

Sunny Jenkins

Henry Jenkins
Originally uploaded by Joi
This was not how it was supposed to work. On Thursday I left the office energetic to prepare for the next day's evening with my team members. I had invited them over for casual dinner and drinks. My idea was also to use some of the evening for preparing for my lecture next Saturday in Geneva. After Friday I had planned an active Saturday of studying, shopping and so forth.

Well, as I got back from work on Thursday it was clear that the flu had caught me. And it came over like a flood. By the hour it only got worse and by the evening it was evident that the next day would be ruined. Before two I could not get up from bed as my head was pounding. I had to cancel the party planned a month back which sucked big time. In the end I ended up staying home also most of Saturday as I still felt relatively weak.

My weekend was however saved by two things: Professor Henry Jenkins and a sunny Sunday. Jenkins is MIT's Professor of Comparative Media Studies and writes phenomenally and in an entertaining manner on popular culture, fans, convergence of old and new media as well as media education. He has a critical but not cynical take on media, he admits being a fan of popular culture and he provides suggestions for improvements. I also like the fact that he often consciously looks at phenomena from the point of view of the viewer. His research on how Americans watch American Idol socially is awesome. Highly recommend his book Convergence Culture. Here I also need to thank Daniel and Celia for leading me to his literature.

The weather does not need explanation apart from pointing out that I am sure everyone knows how it feels when you get outside after being ill. Superman is back! Seriously, you feel reborn. I felt so energetic that we ended up discussing the European Dream for five hours on a terrace. It functioned as a good training camp for a debate in Stockholm on Thursday on the very existence of European culture.

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