Alex commented that:

I think you strike upon something important here in the notion of these bloggers as ghostly figures, both virtual and material (in the way Derrida remarks about the spectral). They haunt Rt. 66, visiting their haunts. And as you note in another post, it is their haunting (their frequent, periodic inhabitation) that establishes their ethos, their identities, both within the blogosphere and the "505."

I couldn't agree more. I wish I could take credit for this idea, but as you mention Derrida discusses this. A major influence on my thoughts is Steve Pile's book Real Cities. He does a nice job looking at the spectral (he uses the term phantasmagoria for its historical and performative connotations), AND does a nice job of connecting it with "on the ground" experience. I think this was what I am reaching for more generally in my own perspective (and one of the reasons I am looking at epideictic ethos, rather than, say deliberative, or forensic ethos. It's about those we share share space with, celebrate with, warn, etc. rather than just argumentation).

I also like the way that the Route 66 combines an abstract sense of movement and speed (something Baudrilled noted was key to understanding Americanness in this travelogue America) with the material realities of the automobile. Route 66 is celebrated (it is the most covered American song), and is famous for its nostalgia, but it was a BLOODY and dangerous road. There are probably more than a few ghosts, both happy and angry on this road.

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