“Is Google making us stupid?” When Nicholas Carr, author of “The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains,” first posted this question in a celebrated essay published in The Atlantic, he tapped into a well of anxiety about how the Internet is changing us. He also crystallized one of the most important debates of our time. As we enjoy the Net’s bounties, are we sacrificing our ability to read and think deeply? Building on the insights of thinkers from Plato to McLuhan, Carr makes a convincing case that every information technology carries an intellectual ethic – a set of assumptions about the nature of knowledge and intelligence.
Carr will give a reading and talk at A-B Tech Ferguson Auditorium at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 28 with a reception following. The free public event is presented by Lenoir-Rhyne University Visiting Writing Series, Lenoir-Rhyne University Center for Graduate Studies of Asheville, and Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College. Carr will also appear on the Lenoir-Rhyne campus in Hickory, N.C. at the P.E. Monroe Auditorium on Thursday, Sept. 27 at 7p.m.
“The Shallows” was a finalist for the 2011 Pulitzer Prize in General Nonfiction and a finalist for the 2011 PEN Center USA Literary Award. An international best-seller, “The Shallows” has been published in 23 different languages. Carr is also the author of two earlier books, “The Big Switch” (2008) and “Does IT Matter?” (2004). His books have been translated into more than 20 languages. He was a columnist for The Guardian and wrote for The Atlantic, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Wired, The Sunday Times (London), The New Republic, The Financial Times, Die Zeit and other periodicals. His essay “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” has been collected in several anthologies, including “The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2009,” “The Best Technology Writing 2009,” and “The Best Spiritual Writing 2010.”He writes a popular blog called “Rough Type” and has been the writer-in-residence at the University of California, Berkley. He holds a B.A. from Dartmouth College and an M.A. in English and American Literature and Language from Harvard University.