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Publisher's Summary

We present ourselves and encounter others through profiles. A profile shows us not as we are seen directly but how we are perceived by a broader public. As we observe how others observe us, we calibrate our self-presentation accordingly. Profile-based identity is evident everywhere from pop culture to politics, marketing to morality. But all too often critics simply denounce this alleged superficiality in defense of some supposedly pure ideal of authentic or sincere expression. 

This book argues that the profile marks an epochal shift in our concept of identity and demonstrates why that matters. You and Your Profile blends social theory, philosophy, and cultural critique to unfold an exploration of the way we have come to experience the world. Instead of polemicizing against the profile, Hans-Georg Moeller and Paul J. D'Ambrosio outline how it works, how we readily apply it in our daily lives, and how it shapes our values - personally, economically, and ethically. They develop a practical vocabulary of life in the digital age. 

Informed by the Daoist tradition, they suggest strategies for handling the pressure of social media by distancing oneself from one's public face. A deft and wide-ranging consideration of our era's identity crisis, this book provides vital clues on how to stay sane in a time of proliferating profiles.

©2021 Columbia University Press (P)2021 Tantor

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I liked it, worth reading

I suppose the basic critique of profilicity regarding authenticity, and of authenticity regarding profilicity (if we may be so liberal to codify perspective social valuations as codified systems) is how either
in different ways
seem to place external validation as primacy over the accurate understanding of reality in motive.
Thus, in terms of what might be considered "right action", the question is not which system of identity building is superior as indeed all systems of identity or lenses of identity have blind spots if used as an 𝑖𝑛𝑡𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛𝑎𝑙 technology to build oneself. (Rather from culture as a self-sustaining machine as perhaps the authors would seem to invoke looking at the tech)

Practically, it is a question of whether one is motivated by constituitive validation and identity-reinforcement/building or if they are motivated by a clear apprehension of reality -whatever that happens to be.
No preference, no boundary, no blindness.

I think however the construct lens of "identity Technologies" for understanding the "real" motivation or intention of profilific communication has its limitations.

There is value to veracity in all information.
To conceptually cut up the different styles of deviations from "carefree wandering" or "curious truth seeking activity"
belies a neutrality of difference between what are effectively different modes of lying to oneself and others as a neutrality of value.

However, Does it really not make a difference whether the reason I decided to get this book and decided to read through it was motivated by a sincere or authentic interest in the material and a desire to understand the subject
or if the purposes of getting and reading the book were such that I could build myself as a more sophisticated person and have something to talk about in conversation with friends or online in a review of the book so as to market myself as a sophisticated thinker?
Is the reason for my rhetoric at present to be compelling? Why do I wish to be compelling?
What is the purpose of communication?
Is it to effectively transfer or point to understanding some sense of information accurately and efficiently?
Or is it to gain the external validation of the general peer? my close family and friends or even to validate my egoic sense of self that I've structured with great sophistication as true?
I think it has to be the former if the goal is truth.
Whether or not validation comes through any given system is secondary and after effects, whether a technology happens to be prolific or authentic or sincere-friendly is secondary to the matter of communication. These technologies if presumed to be operating BY persons rather than IN persons becomes a medium of communication rather than some kind of standard or test of fulfillment in and of itself.

Indeed if I am indulging this material out of an authentic interest in it -it would appear that I'd be better positioned to understand and or interpret it than someone doing it for profilific purposes and is constantly interrupting the authors prose to interject the question of "is this useful to me and with what I've already committed identification with?"

There is of course the consideration of confirmation bias certainly but that all has to do with self-awareness which again comes back to the primacy of active truth seeking. But, the question begged here also is what is "truth"? Or what is the nature of a spirit which is interested in truth-seeking versus the spirit of an interest invalidation or self-enhancement?
Well that's a big question.
But perhaps another way to look at it is:
are there other perspectives from which to see the faked social activism stunts or faked climate change reports as bad or negative in and of themselves outside of the model which privileges profilicity?

Perhaps those events were unfortunate because they were yet another case where falsehood took precedence where general trust deteriorated.
Where the drive to be sensationalist or the drive for Capital and external validation took primacy over Simple Truth telling.
[ "Well what exactly is 'simple truth telling', blah blah blah Steven pinker this and that"]

It is not simply that one preferred Truth where suffering occurs, perhaps it is simply one prefers truth telling for the benefit of general and more basic epistemic social condition. No ego or protected identity needed to hold that view, infact identification would hold that to be counter insomuch as one wishes to have greater intelligence over another.

The investments into tried-and-true or the building of new strategies so as to fool others is always a fool's errand because the building of more sophisticated lies (lies to oneself and by effect without intention to others) in turn produce better lie detectors within the cultural milieu.
But I think I've gone too far for one review.
I enjoyed the book, very much.
In any case, pay mind to not take too seriously the nearly superstitious fear-mongering reproach of reviewers which state that books and ideas are "dangerous". Such sentiments not only presume a privileged position of discretion -ascertaining that everyone else must be stupid by comparison, but discount the text with as much (if not more) overstatement as they would attribute to the author (if only as a matter of brevity necessitated by a review). If something is dangerous, such an observation must be made in relation to a notion of safety. Mental Guard rails installed and defended —what one would usually refer to as ego with all of its accompanying delusions and distortions.

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As propaganda, it's remarkable

as analysis, it's accurate
as philosophy, it's confused and harmful

the authors apparently never heard about the map vs territory relation