Monday, November 22, 2010


A reader pointed out that it was unclear whether the woman in the picture I posted last week understood the meaning of her shirt or not, so I'll just say it outright: she had no idea.

After meeting her I traipsed off to an INGO-run hygiene promotion seminar for community leaders. There our presenters treated us to text bubble- and arrow- filled PowerPoint presentations, which they referred to as "tools". As the t-shirt illustrates, modes of representing abstract information are culturally-specific and learned. If they're lucky, people here have grown up copying sentences written on a chalkboard, the main school-day exercise. Bubbles of text, arrows, and flow charts don't enter into it. At the risk of anthropological pedantry: this should factor into the creation of "tools".

No comments:

Post a Comment