R. Kelts ruminates on a Miyazaki quote:
All of our young people today derive their pleasure, entertainment, communication and information from virtual worlds. And all of those worlds have one thing in common: They’re making young Japanese weak.
Appropriately enough, I found this through Mr. Kelts’s Twitter feed.
It’s interesting how with each wave of human innovation, moralists decry it as somehow alienating humanity from its purity or strength. I’m sure if I dug around, I could find a quote from the Luddites addressing the cotton gin or the tools of the early Industrial Revolution the same way.
In any case, as Richard Feynman was fond of saying, “For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot be fooled.” How is it, then, that Miyazaki accuses these successful technologies of alienating man from nature? More precisely, what was essentially “natural” about face-to-face human relations to begin with?
Miyazaki is truly great as an animator and creator, but this reactionary statement is reminiscent of Pentti Linkola (“Everything we have developed over the last 100 years should be destroyed.”) Here Miyazaki sounds more like a reactionary radical than an entertainment guru or visionary.