The global media environments are filled with nonstop representations of human, planetary, and cosmic destiny — destinies which are most often portrayed as utopian or profoundly dystopian and apocalyptic. Have you ever wondered whether these destinies are desirable, plausible, or even sane? We have. That's why the mission of the Center for Media and Destiny is threefold.
1. Cosmic Media Theory: We map, theorize, and critique media and destiny on Spaceship Earth — the destiny of our species, our planet, and the cosmos. To do this, we are creating a broad new area of media studies: cosmic media theory.
2. Sane Destinies: We seek to effect the most sane long term destinies; therefore, we advocate that human civilization be grounded in the artistic-philosophical-secular merger of cosmology, ecology, and technology.
3. Universal Meanings: In a cultural that celebrate endless "differences," we seek the universal meanings beneath the differences, the universal meanings for humanity as a single species on Spaceship Earth. Thus, we hope to contribute many new memes and secular ideas for thinking about our destinies: personal and individual, shared and collective, local and global.
We pursue our mission via a variety of projects, including books, essays, podcasts, art exhibits, short films, panel discussions, public events yet to be determined, and by providing various resources at this web site. We do this out of wonder, curiosity, and a concern for the big picture: what are we doing, where we are going, and what does it mean? We invite you to join us.
COSMIC MEDIA THEORY
Cosmic media theory may be loosely defined as the study of the role of media images and media technology in:
1. how humans understand their place in the universe and on Spaceship Earth,
2. how humans orient themselves in space and time,
3. and what these effects have for human meaning and destiny.
We will help "cosmic media theory" become a new area of critical media studies, precisely because these existential effects of media technology are largely ignored and overlooked. We draw from art, science, cosmology, technology, and ecology in discovering secular values and existential meanings — if they exist — for humanity and destiny on Spaceship Earth and in the vast cosmos, as revealed by our most powerful media technologies.
The rationale for this area of study is briefly described in: Why Study Cosmic Media Theory?
CONVEY AND COLLABORATE
We convey these memes via print/electronic media and collaborate with individuals and organizations who share similar values and intellectual ambitions. So far, our projects have included:
• our first book
• an art exhibit
• various essays published in anthologies and academic journals and made available here; see the right sidebar.
• public events: traditional academic panels and nnovative panels on special topics.
• providing sources and links to topical books, films, videos, world's fairs, and other cool sites, also listed in the right sidebar.
We also welcome intellectual contributions — essays, films/videos, artworks — from theorists, artists, writers, scientists, filmmakers, and anyone interested in exploring media and destiny in the cosmos. Since re-thinking our destinies is an individual and collective project, we look forward to future collaborations.
In doing these projects, we will span the unnecessary boundaries that too often separate academia and citizens, critical theory and popular culture. We want the Center for Media and Destiny to be a one-of-a-kind organization and site for ideas about media and human destiny. We invite you to join the journey.
OUR SEED CAPITAL
Our mission embraces and continues exploring the question that concludes Barry Vacker's innovative text anthology, Media Environments (2010).
A textbook for the 21st century, this anthology merges cosmic media theory with critical media studies to teach university-level courses on "Media and Society." Media Environments is based on a simple concept: combine movies with texts to critique media and society. The textbooks provides students with four media models — the Meme, Network, Spectacle, and Hyperreal — that are used to critique media and society at multiple levels and on many topics. Given the power of our media technologies and what they reveal about life and the cosmos, here's the question: "What are we doing on Spaceship Earth?" In other words: as individuals and as a species, what are we doing, where are we going, and what does it mean?
To continue our mission and exploring these questions, the royalties from the sales of Media Environments have provided the seed capital for the Center for Media and Destiny.
We welcome your feedback. If you have comments about our mission, please contact us at the link provided. Thanks.