Monday, May 4, 2009

Vanity is Fair.

The way it's discussed in our society, "Vanity" is a derogatory term. Is it really? I'm pretty certain our generation has made it pretty clear that vanity is simply a part of the social landscape. Am I wrong?

First, let's take a deeper look: 

vanity |ˈvanətē|noun ( pl. -ties)excessive pride in or admiration of one's own appearance or achievements it flattered his vanity to think I was in love with him the personal vanities and ambitions of politiciansSee notes at egotismpride .

Get all that? Okay, based on the Dictionary definition, yeah, it doesn't seem like the healthiest practice. You shouldn't gloat, pursue unnecessary attention for self-satisfaction purposes and, I don't know, post every one of your accomplishments for the cyberworld to see on Facebook, MySpace (does that even still exist), Twitter or in a blog. Hmm, are we seeing the irony in that last statement? 

With all the online networks and "update" options, I'm pretty sure that vanity is now a part of the social scene. Disagree? At their core, Facebook, Twitter and blogs are all about gathering attention. I'm vain, I'll be the first to admit it. Cross the line with me.

Think about it. It's not a bad thing. Just the nature of our generation. 

Thoughts?

6 comments:

Sarah said...

you're vane? haha sorry.

jacquelynrachel said...

Is it really vanity, or is it simply taking advantage of what resources we have to network anything artistic and creative? I try and draw attention to every blog I write, not necessarily so people will tell me how awesome I am, but in an attempt to gain enough credibility as a writer to one day make a living off of it. Granted, the compliments are nice, too, so maybe it's just a more subdued form of vanity with the greatest of intentions?

Dan Krikorian said...

This is a really interesting concept. I struggle with feeling like this daily because building a music fanbase takes lots and lots and lots of promotion(see, even a slight promotion there, sorry). But... "How do you let people know about your passions and things you're pursuing without coming off like a pompous asshole"? What defines it for me is the word in the first part of your definition..."excessive." Simply making people aware of things you are doing is not vain. Yet, if you're excessive with it and over the top, then yes I think it could be viewed that way and it'll be apparent. All the social media outlets lend themselves to over-use, so it's a fine line. I also think you have to look at what it is the person is drawing your attention to all the time. Are they ALL about themselves ALL the time? Or do they add to the greater good by promoting others and bringing forth useful info every once and a while?

I was hoping you'd quote Carly Simon in your post...

"You're so vain, I bet you think this blog is about you, don't you"?

Flying said...

hey but in the end, blogs, myspaces, facebooks etc. it's all about getting public for one reason or another ... if not, you usually don't do it.
depends on the content I guess ...

Flying said...

and then I go back to the home page and it strikes me : your blog is called "keep chasen". if I follow your idea, you would be complying with your definition.
but is that simple ?

Matt Hoffman said...

I like this post ... solidifies a defining theme that guides our generation - self-promotion (vanity). I tend to displace some of the blame - is it really our fault we've cemented ourselves in front of the metaphorical mirror that is social networking?

If you're interested in the archetypal personalities present in the age of consumerism and social media you should check out this series pbs put out a while back ... http://tinyurl.com/qdjsnb . If I remember correctly, it discusses "cool quotient" as a process that takes place within a feedback loop ... thought it was pretty interesting.