Explaining Things: Inventing Ourselves and Our Worlds is about how we invent ourselves and our cultures by how we explain things. We invent our explanations, and then they invent us.
It is a book about how we create our virtual worlds – the habitats of our minds – by how we explain things. It is a book about how our explanations get embedded in the stories we tell and ingest – from gossip to advertising to the pernicious “social media.”
It is a book about how everything we say or do or have is an explanation. Whatever we say or do or buy explains who we are. We multifariously explain ourselves to ourselves and to others. We talk, we daydream, we do, we feel: all evolves from how we explain things.
Our explanations are the seeds from which everything human and social sprouts and evolves. They are the sources and the sinks of how we live our lives.
We have turned our lives over to our pundits – our “experts,” our celebrities, our advertisers and entertainers, and our fashionistas. We invite them to tell us what’s what, and how to live. They are our predators. We are their prey. It is an unprecedented sea-change for civilization.
As our lives go, so goes our civilization. We evolve out of our explanations of things. But to what end?