Constellation: The Plasticity of the Body and World

For my end of term constellation essay, I have chosen to utilise the theory of neuroplasticity and apply it to graphic communication. I find the theory incredibly intriguing as it explores the concept that the brain can change at any age. I feel that this relates to graphic communication, as the aim of a graphic communicator is to challenge what their audience think they know or believe in. The idea of changing the mind or emotion of a person solely using powerful graphic design is arguably the dream goal for any designer and an aim which I will explore the feasibility of. Through the lectures I have attended I have gained an understanding of this theory and its relevance to my practice. The following quotes are ones which I have found particular relevant in supporting my connections between the theories of scientists and scholars and the world of graphic communication:

“When the world was born there began a war that will last until the worlds end, and this is the war of man against nature, of the spirit against the flesh, of liberty against determinism. History is nothing but the story of the endless conflict.” (Jules Michelet (1912) The Conquest of Nature)

“Much like letters, sounds, and images can be transformed into analog or digital signals, sent across space, and decoded again by fax machines, radios, televisions, and computer screens, a signal can be transmitted between two or more individuals. All of us, from mates and god sibs to publicists and pornographers, have the ability to reach into the autonomic nervous system of other bodies, there to excite neurons and stimulate or shut off neurotransmitters and hormones (Shryock and Smail, p. 64)

“The body is molded by a great many distinct regimes; it is broken down by the rhymes of work, rest and holidays; it is poisoned by food or values, through eating habits or moral laws; it constructs resistances.” (Nietzsche, cited in Shryock and Smail, 2011, p. 75)



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