The job of a {broader, more inclusive set of design} brain{s} is to “produce {decolonised} future{s}”

Daniel Dennett, Intuition Pumps (my emboldening, below)

How can meaning make a difference? It doesn’t seem to be the kind of physical property, like temperature or mass or chemical composition, that could cause anything to happen. What brains are for is extracting meaning from the flux of energy impinging on their sense organs, in order to improve the prospects of the bodies that house them and provide their energy. The job of a brain is to “produce future” in the form of anticipations about the things in the world that matter to guide the body in appropriate ways. Brains are energetically very expensive organs, and if they can’t do this important job well, they aren’t earning their keep.

Matt Ward, interviewed by SpeculativeEdu

Colonising the future: If Speculative Design builds competency in thinking about future alternatives, the design community needs to ensure that it is aware of the structural inequalities that allow for a privileged voice. I think it’s become painfully obvious that we don’t need any more white male billionaires telling us how the future looks, therefore by moving Speculative Design outside of the “academy” we need to make sure it’s reaching people who don’t normally have say over the future. We should aim to empower alternative views about how the world could be.

 

It’s a great interview. Read the lot.

1 comment
  1. Joseph Campbell spent his whole life studying diverse cultures in search for an answer to the meaning question. Just before he died, he concluded: “People say that what we’re all seeking is a meaning for life. I don’t think that’s what we’re really seeking. I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive…” (The Power of Myth). That experience , for me, is the greatest gift non-Western cultures can offer us. The task of speculative design, it follows (for me, anyway) is not to write a new story, but to open us up to ways of being that already exist.

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