After reading Benjamin’s “Unpacking my Library” I could totally relate. Every year, when its time to go home and go through the process of storage I have boxes with books and notebooks that I don’t want to throw away. My desk is full and now I have to put books under my bed. A lot of people tell me I am not going to read, or even open any of those books, but still I prefer to keep them, just as Benjamin did. He says, “Ownership is the most intimate relationship that one can have to objects.” I agree that books are more than pieces of paper or heavy things that take up space; they are part of the journey to graduate, memories of all nighters, hard work, and accomplishment. Maybe after my senior year I’ll have to sell them or throw them out because I can’t take them to Ecuador with me. But it will definitely be something hard to do as I am connected to them. A part of me is in those books and my time in Manhattanville.
Differently I don’t identify completely with Dibbell on “Unpacking my Record Collection” because although he enjoys moving towards the digital era with music, I haven’t been able to take that step yet. I am not saying that I still walk around with my Walkman, but my friends make fun of me for still having an iPod. Everyone now listens to Spodify or Pandora, where people don’t have to actually download the music to their computers. I got my first iPod when I was 11 years old, and have collected music since. It might not have the latest hits, but I enjoy putting “shuffle songs” and getting memories of moments in my life when I enjoyed that type of music. Although the music in my iPod is digital, still I get a sense of ownership by downloading every song to my computer and passing it to my iPod, instead of just clicking an app on my phone.
Personally I feel more attached to physical things, because digital ones are infinite and you don’t really have to work hard to obtain them, which makes me appreciate them less as I don’t have the same connection.