First as Tragedy, Then as Farce

| March 8, 2012

A friend sent me the link to watch this YouTube video made by RSA Animate, who has, in this case, set Slavoj Zizek’s “First as Tragedy, Then as Farce” lecture to animation.  I post this here not to compel our readers to question harmful (merely arguably!) capitalist tactics for selling “save the planet,” but because this instruction method–setting lectures or essays to animation–strikes me as a useful tool for education.

Numerous aspects of this video remind me of the resources of Teachers College Library, and of EdLab’s efforts to create multimedia software useful for educators: the dry erase board, that they’re using visual media to clarify a message, etc. Arguably, this visual version of the lecture is made far more articulate an appeal because of its dueling visual and audio components than it was originally. As I watched it, I sometimes found I couldn’t keep up with his frenetic way of speaking, and in those moments I concentrated more on the video.  I found the effect almost dreamlike, as I shifted in and out of visual and aural modes of attention to absorb the full message. See what you think.

This video brought to mind some of EdLab’s products, namely: Vialogues, which helps its users combine video with real time commentary, and The Voice, a video series featuring interviews with TC Record contributors.