My cool "300" word college essay
This is my fun rough draft essay that I'm going to have to scrap half of, despite believing fully that it embodies my distinctly "Chris Barclay" indifference towards having to write blegh in blegh words maximum while making sure to mention 1) blegh, 2) blegh, and 3) blegh, considering how allegedly monumental these essays are into capturing one's personality and writing style.
In 1950, a biologist named James Olds inadvertently stumbled upon a curious discovery in biopsychology by shocking a region of a mouse’s brain which controlled gratification. A mouse placed with a lever which gives sporadic shocks to this region will continually push down on the lever, without eating or sleeping, until death. And so it is with our society of mass-entertainment, ironic humor, and subtle advertising. The modern individual needn’t wait for a stoplight to turn green without being entertained with their phone at their disposal! We live almost vicariously through our screens, which offer us escape from the banalities of life. Put bluntly, it’s as if we’re reinforced into a certain unconscious lifestyle through constant advertisement and entertainment. This being mentioned, practices in meditation and conscious awareness have been scientifically proven to positively influence an individual’s cognitive and emotional states. The author David Foster Wallace discusses this theory in greater depth in his unfinished novel The Pale King, mentioning that, “. . . the ability to deal with boredom[,] to function effectively in an environment that precludes everything vital and human[, would be] to breathe, so to speak, without air.” There have been additional experiments testing how long a human can go without any social interaction or stimulus but the confines of their own mind. Within a short amount of time, the individual’s circadian rhythm got completely off-cycle, causing the person’s mental and emotional stability to plummet. No matter how wholesome or mentally-fit a person is, you go kind of bats, bio-psychologically speaking, without social interaction. My research project would aim to better understand—on a biological, sociological, and literary/cultural level—the effects of mass-entertainment upon not only our mental stability, but also upon how we approach societal issues in dire need of confrontation. And perhaps now is a reasonable time to admit that I’ve recently been completely head-over-heels captivated by this BBC miniseries from 1972 called “Ways of Seeing with John Berger”, which discusses and criticizes art and culture in a way so eloquent and unthought of by me until now. The way I’d like to explore my research project would be similar to the ways in which John Berger analyzes how photography in modern advertisement has acted as a modern substitute for oil paintings, which, he argues, were once used to display the status and wealth of individual who had purchased or commissioned it. The sincerity of John Berger’s analysis—such as the way it forces the reader to pause for contemplation while continuously providing new sources of both evidence and new variables (i.e. panning over perfectly-sequenced photographs or film)—harnesses the same essence of serious inquiry with which I’d like to approach the research project. Perhaps then, against the background of our ironic dispensation, some light can be shed upon the seemingly surreal parts of our society.