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Holding On to RealityThe Nature of Information at the Turn of the Millennium$
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Albert Borgmann

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780226066257

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226066226.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 20 September 2021

Realizing Information Building

Realizing Information Building

Chapter:
(p.105) Chapter Ten Realizing Information Building
Source:
Holding On to Reality
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226066226.003.0011

Building includes reality so vigorously that it requires and is dependent on contingency and reveals something about it. All cultural signs or symbols underdetermine their realization and are in this sense necessarily ambiguous. This kind of symbolic ambiguity makes for the creativity of realization and contingency. Real ambiguity has a difficult and distressing aspect yet than that which appears in the misguided ruminations of art historians. Gothic builders showed a sublime indifference and grand superiority to the kind of counting and calculating that the romantics deplored in the rational and industrial temper of their times. The shift of cultural energy from the presence of things to the reference of signs, from meaning to information, was part of the large contingency of historical change.

Keywords:   building, reality, contingency, cultural signs, symbols

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